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A day in the life of a CBSbutler consultant

1 Jul 14  | CBSbutler |  Recruitment News

The key to a business' success lies firmly in its workforce - a team of people who will be moving collectively in one direction and working towards the same goals every day of their professional lives.

While agencies are often taken for granted by those who don't directly rely on them on a daily basis, they play a crucial role in the efficiency with which the world's industries operate.

They act as a link between skilled people and the businesses that so desperately need them.

Recruitment agencies also depend on hardworking, goal-driven people - or consultants, to be more specific. CBSbutler is no exception. We have been at the forefront of the technical recruitment industry for almost two decades and show no signs of slowing down. So, on a day-to-day basis, what exactly do tour company's employees get up to?

A typical morning:

The hard work begins bright and early for all recruiters, whether they’re more experienced or newer to the industry. Getting stuck in from around 8am, the first part of the day usually comprises reading through any new emails; scanning them for details of any new candidates or vacancies.

As with most companies, development and progress are key focus areas at CBSbutler and the initial two hours of catching-up are followed quickly by a business development session. The idea of this is to give the consultants a chance to build relationships with new clients and improve their links with existing ones - both processes are crucial to the company's success.

While some recruiters’ days are a little less structured, client interaction also plays a big part in the first few hours of a normal day for most. Whether it is calls to clients or candidates based across Britain or in the Middle East, keeping in touch is crucial for maximising future opportunities.

Typically, the morning activities are completed with a spot of reflection and response. From around 11am, both the light and heavyweight recruiters will assess how successful their morning’s work has been. This is the time they will begin advertising for any requirements that popped up overnight or through the morning, too.

Post-lunch productivity:


From noon onwards, the day can take a slightly less predictable turn. The afternoon schedule will depend largely on how successful the morning was. While it's normal to find contract and candidate management on the 'to-do' list, the way in which these tasks are approached will differ. This comes with working in a fast-moving and reactive environment, recruiters say - essentially, things can change completely at the drop of a hat.

Although it sounds clichéd, no two days are the same for recruiters working at CBSbutler: something which they say keeps things interesting. One recruiter even talks of being a managing director, recruiter, financial manager and sales person all in the same day!

In the afternoon, once contact has been made with clients far and wide, generating new connections is the main focus. If a recruiter has specific plans to target an international audience, the order in which they reach out is largely dependent on each contact’s time zone. For example, calls made to potential clients or candidates based in California would take place towards the end of the day (the state is eight hours behind the UK).

Of course, the afternoon’s plans can be thrown off course if a new vacancy pops up: especially if it’s an urgent one. At this point, the day’s general goal can instantly change from lead generation to following up and investigation of the new requirement.

Goals and obstacles:

In the last few years, CBSbutler has been decorated with a number of awards for the success of both external and internal operations. In June 2014, for instance, we were commended by Global Recruiter for its client service (2nd year running), while the Sunday Times named it as one of its 'Best Small Companies to Work For' in 2012. For a business as a whole, it is these kinds of things that generate feelings of fulfilment - but for the individual cogs in the well-oiled machine, the sense of achievement comes from reaching more regular goals.

For many, it’s the eventual placement of a candidate that drives their ‘buzz’ at work each day. It’s typically a long cycle: having a sales call, being awarded the role, finding the right candidates and completing the interview process: so reaching the end point is a significant win.

The elation that follows a successful placement at CBSbutler can be put down to the hard work that goes into the build-up. Things don't always go to plan, though - there's plenty of potential for disaster and stress is to be expected. While the role is generally sales-based, recruitment consultants deal with human beings, not physical objects, and it's this fact that causes the majority of hiccups. After all, people can be unpredictable and while this does help to make things extremely interesting at times, a change of heart can be the difference between hitting a target and being forced to drop everything and start over.

Tools of the trade:

Like companies in most other sectors, recruitment agencies must respond to changes in the world around them.

Of course, industrial, political, social and technological developments all determine the tasks they're faced with - whether directly or indirectly - but these changes can also impact the ways in which these tasks are approached.

This is something that experienced recruiters, with ten-plus years’ experience, might find easier to handle than their less experienced counterparts. Being able to think on their feet and make decisions within minutes isn’t something that can be learned by recruiters through study; it’s a skill picked up whilst on the job. What’s more, an ability to adapt their approach in line with industry changes is crucial - take social media, for instance. Its impact on the business world is undeniable, but how do recruiters with different levels of experience view it?

For someone with a decade or more in the industry, seeing the light at the end of the social media tunnel might not be that easy. It also depends on their specific sector. Take aviation specialists, for example, whose blue collar candidates are more likely to turn to sites like than Twitter or Facebook to search/apply for roles. Recruiters with fewer years’ experience behind them, who are more likely to use social media on a personal basis, often show more enthusiasm for the medium. LinkedIn, for example, is often cited as a great tool for connecting with candidates based in places other than the UK: as well as connecting with clients.

Penetrating markets like Hungary, Germany, France and Switzerland through mainstream social media can be a little trickier than some recruiters suggest, so sites like Xing and Viadeo can be useful too.

Rewards and the future:

For CBSbutler, our reputation is one of its biggest weapons moving forward. Having the chance to work as part of an established brand is a key draw for many of its recruiters: something that could interest Britons considering a move into a recruitment role. Achieving success in what is a fast-paced but rewarding industry depends on many things. Understanding the specific sector in which you want to recruit is crucial, a task that should be easy for recent graduates or those with only a few years’ work experience.

Those with 10 -15 years’ working experience who fancy taking a step into recruitment can use skills gained in their past roles to achieve great success. For example, ex-aviation journalists are likely to have a network of contacts comprising both potential candidates and clients, giving them a ready-made address book. Likewise, well-established engineers should have a great idea of the type of person that would excel in their role; using this knowledge to sort the wheat from the chaff.

It's clear that being a consultant in this market requires a lot of effort and this is unlikely to change any time soon. As the industry evolves, CBSbutler will be forced to find new ways to stay ahead of its competition; new differentiators must be established as more and more companies adopt the existing ones. In many ways, though, it's this lack of predictability that makes working in recruitment such an exciting prospect.

   Click here to find out how to join the CBSbutler team

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