16 Apr 2018
Why a 3 month probation period is necessary for both you and your new employer when starting a new Recruitment role.
Probationary period for Recruitment Consultants – why is it important?
A probation period is usually a 3 – 6-month stage at the end of the recruitment process that is agreed between both hiring Recruitment Agency and the incoming Recruitment Consultant when contracts are signed. The probation period gives the Recruitment Agency a chance to assess whether they have made the right Recruitment Consultant hire without fear of repercussions; a Recruitment Manager can dismiss the new Recruitment Consultant during this time without the risk of unfair dismissal claims. The probation period can also work in the Recruitment Consultant’s favour. During this time the Recruitment Consultant is not tied into a notice period so if they feel they have made the wrong choice they can leave at short notice without wasting any more time in the wrong Recruitment job.
Legalities aside, the probation period should be viewed favorably by the Recruitment Consultant as a less intense period where they have time to settle in and learn the ropes. During the probation period, the pressure is off, there are no targets and your Recruitment Manager and colleagues will be providing you with guidance and support. You should use this 3-month period effectively and perhaps even visualise those first few days and weeks to manage your own expectations during this time. As a seasoned Rec to Rec recruiter, I would suggest the following.
Start your new recruitment role with the right attitude and be prepared for unfamiliarity. There will be days when you feel like your last place of work was a better option, but these sentiments will reduce over time as you become more settled. When you start a new recruitment role, you can sometimes feel overloaded as you adapt to so many new ways of working. This can be overwhelming at times and again, you may become nostalgic for your old recruitment agency where you knew everyone, understood the systems and processes and could probably do the job with your eyes shut, but you must also remember you left your old job for a reason. If you are prepared for unfamiliarity before you start you will adapt to new things quicker and easier.
Be prepared for new KPIs, perhaps more or less of them and for a different management style. Not to mention a different commute, where perhaps you might not pass your favourite coffee shop. By embracing change you may find an even better coffee shop on the doorstep of your new Recruitment agency. Plan for this in advance if you’re a stickler for routine comforts.
Don’t ever feel awkward about asking questions. It really is the best way to learn. In fact, if you aren’t asking questions frequently a good Recruitment Manager should be worried. Sometimes it’s more about how you approach the asking of questions. Speak to your new colleagues and Recruitment Manager about what works best for them. Are they happy for you ask across the floor as and when or would they rather you met up with them every few hours with a list of questions you need answering? Or, are they happy to receive questions on email. Sometimes people prefer this as it means they can answer you at their convenience so you don’t feel like you are interrupting them if they are in a particularly busy moment. And finally let’s face it, most people like answering questions as it makes them look like the more experienced colleague. It’s good for a person’s ego. Very rarely will you come across a Recruitment Consultant who takes umbrage at answering a new person’s questions.
Finally, take notes. This is imperative. From day one you should be armed with a large, neat A4 pad and a working pen. Write as much down as you can in a clear and coherent manner where possible and refer back to these notes again and again.
Following these simple steps in your probation period should help you sail through it. There will always be days when you crave the familiarity of your last place of work, this is normal, but remind yourself that by month 6 you will feel part of the furniture.
Please contact Carlin Hall to discuss your next role in contingent Recruitment or Executive Search. 020 796 7292.