What to Ask When Interviewing for a Recruiting Job?

You are currently in the process of interviewing for recruiting positions?  What do you ask when interviewing for a recruiting job?

Why is the position available?

It is important to know why this recruiting position is available.  Is the reason because someone quit or is it because of company growth?

What is the company tenure of your recruiters and account managers in your department?

This is important to know because the recruiting industry is known for high turnover.  If the tenure of the recruiters and account managers are five to ten years, then that is comforting.  If the tenure is six months to two years, then that can possibly be a bad sign.

What is the turnover percentage in your department?

Both the tenure of employees and the turnover percentage is important information to know.  If the turnover percentage in the particular department that you are interviewing for is high, then that is possibly a bad sign.

What are the daily, weekly, and monthly metrics goals for senior level recruiters?


Most big recruiting firms have metrics goals in place that you have to consistently meet in order to keep your job.  Make sure that you are aware of the metrics goals that you will be responsible for meeting and that you are confident that you will be able to meet them.

How many placements have the senior level recruiters averaged this year so far? What about last year?

This question is important to know in order to accurately estimate what your commission will be and how productive the company department is.

How much business is VMO versus direct manager contact?

This is important because if you have ever worked a Vendor Management Office (VMO) account without any management contact, you know how stressful it can be.  I personally would never work in a recruiting position if I were going to be assigned to a VMO account with no manager contact.  The candidate submittal to hire ratio is ridiculous with some of those VMO accounts.

What is the process for recruiting candidates (Do you need to meet each candidate in person before you submit them, etc)?

This is important to know, especially if you have a candidate submittal metrics goal.  If you have to meet each candidate in person before you submit them, then you will need to make sure that the submittal metrics goal is something that you are confident you will be able to meet.

Are the positions that I would be recruiting for local to the DFW area or are they spread across the US? 

This is important to know because it will affect the way you pipeline candidates.  If you are concentrating on one single area or skills set, then it is easier to create a solid candidate pipeline.  If you will be recruiting for tons of different skills sets across the United States, then your pipeline will become harder to maintain and solidify.

Would I be assigned to a single account or supporting multiple accounts and account managers?

I personally do not enjoy being assigned to one single account or account manager.  Personally I feel like that is ‘putting all my eggs in one basket’.  If the account manager is not any good, then you come across as a non-productive recruiter because you are not making hires.  If the company loses the account you are assigned to, then your job may be in jeopardy.

Is all work performed on site or can some work be done remotely?  If some remote work is allowed, does the company provide a laptop?

This is good information to have.  If no work can be done remotely, then you need to pay close attention to the sick time and Paid Time Off (PTO) time offered.  If some work can be done remotely and the company does not offer a laptop, then a laptop or home computer might be a good investment.

Does the company offer any expenses reimbursement?

Some companies will reimburse your personal cell phone expense but they will expect you to use your personal cell phone to contact candidates, etc when needed after hours.  Some companies will provide you with a company cell phone or blackberry.  Some companies will reimburse your public transportation costs or gas mileage.  Some companies will reimburse your home internet cost if remote work is allowed.

What is the base pay range for senior level recruiters?

Make sure you ask about the base pay and also ask if there is a draw or not.

What is the commission plan for senior level recruiters?

Will you be paid lump sum?  If so, how long does the new hire have to work before you are paid?  Are you paid off gross margin, revenue, etc?  Make sure you get all the specific details and you understand them completely.

How are recruiters ranked in the company?

Will you be ranked on how many hires you make, the gross margin of your hires, revenue you are bringing into the company, etc?

What are the work hours?

Make sure you know when you are expected to be there and how long you are expected to stay.  Also find out about the lunch break policy.

How are the medical/dental benefits?  What is the yearly deductible and what is the average cost for a family?

Make sure the medical, dental, and vision benefits are with a well known company.  Make sure the yearly deductible and monthly cost is something you can afford and is acceptable to you.  This is especially important when considering working for a smaller company, because the insurance rates are typically much higher than the bigger companies.

How much vacation and PTO are offered?

This is important to know, especially if no remote work is not allowed.

What is the dress code?

This is important to know so you can make sure you can afford working for this company in the beginning.  If you are used to working in a business casual environment and the company dress code is business professional, then you will need to make sure you own enough work suits to get through the week.

Does your company have a 401K?  If so, how much can you contribute and is there any company matching?

If a 401K is an important retirement option for you, then you need to make sure that you ask about it and about the specific details of it.  Some smaller companies do not offer a 401K.

What recruiting technologies are available for recruiters to utilize?

Does this company have cutting edge recruiting technologies for you to use?  Ask about their candidate database and its functionalities.  What candidate job boards and/or web crawlers are available for you to use?

Is there Candidate Ownership?

Make sure you know if there is or is not a candidate ownership recruiting policy.  If there is a candidate ownership policy in place, ask about the specific details.  If it is 30 days or less, then that might be acceptable.  If it is two to three months or more, then that might create a problem for you coming in as a new recruiter.

What is the job posting procedure?

Will you be responsible for posting your own job postings?  If so, are you allowed to have the candidate responses come to your own personal work email or does it have to go to a centralized email that is available to all the recruiters?  If it goes into a centralized email, what is the recruiting procedure for retrieving the candidate responses?

Will I be required to sign a non-compete?

Most companies require you to sign a non-compete.  Just make sure you read the non-compete document very carefully and are comfortable with the details of it before you sign it.

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