The Benefits of Face-to-Face Engagement in the Recruitment Process

Woman and man meeting face to face in front of a laptop

Rutherford Cross’ Jonathan Donnelly discusses the benefits of getting back to in person meetings with clients for understanding workplace culture.

Over the last few months, it has been refreshing to be back meeting more clients face-to-face in their offices. There’s no doubt the evolution of video calls has added a time saving convenience that we have all benefitted from in recent years, however there are aspects of a face-to-face meeting that cannot be replicated virtually.

Understanding the Brand

Working for a brand that employees can engage with and in a culture that aligns to a candidate’s values remains a real priority for those looking for a next move in their career, even during the cost-of-living crisis.

In our role as recruiters, it is our responsibility to bring our clients’ brands and cultures to life when promoting senior finance vacancies.  We can amass plenty of information from meeting a client by video call, often very efficiently, but it has been fantastic to be able to visit clients on-site and in person in recent weeks

Hybrid Working – the Benefits

Whilst home working has been widely embraced over the last few years, having recently visited some drinks businesses, media companies, and facilities management businesses, it is apparent that these organisations benefit from at least a couple of days per week in the office.

Being in the office allows employees to connect with people they may not interact with daily. These spontaneous conversations over coffee or while passing in a corridor are hugely valuable. A thriving office environment is usually the heart of your business culture, it creates increased collaboration for meetings and group working, enhances relationship building across colleagues and helps with training and development opportunities.

Working in environments surrounded by company products, posters reflecting businesses’ achievements and values reminds employees of the purpose and end result of their work. The “buzz” created by a vibrant and busy office, drives energy levels and job satisfaction.

Reflecting on recent meetings there is a marked difference in clients’ enthusiasm for their organisations and the careers on offer when meeting with hiring managers in face-to-face meetings.  The levels of passion a hiring manager convey often translate to how their recruitment partner positions the business and opportunity, with in a more energised approach usually provoking a greater level of interest.

Experiencing the Work Environment

As culture becomes an ever-increasingly important factor in people’s priorities when choosing career options, it is highly advantageous for us as recruiters to experience the working environment first hand, as we engage with the candidate market on a business’ behalf. It is really beneficial for all parties that we are able to portray an accurate reflection of a company’s culture in order to source candidates who align well with the organisation.

For some the physical working facilities can be really important, how modern, corporate, busy, the lay-out, gym facilities, dog friendliness, the list goes on.  There are so many factors that people take into consideration and its important that we can relay all the relevant information.  Going out on site also allows us to understand how is easy/difficult it can be for a potential employee to commute to the office.

Like with any meeting, when we meet with our clients, building rapport and gaining an appreciation of the hiring manager’s personality is much more easily achieved face to face. A direct manager who can complement and accelerate an individual’s development can be a key factor in ensuring a career move is right, therefore it is imperative we are able to convey their personality.

Meeting face to face also allows us to gain more trust and buy-in from our clients, it is easier to have a discussion on market trends and challenges and explain how we have helped other clients navigate certain issues.

Fundamentally the more we understand a business, its culture, and the workplace environment, the better equipped we are to promote them as an employer.  In recent weeks we have seen the number of face-to-face meetings increase dramatically and this will help us present the right opportunities to candidates and provide them with greater understanding of the business prior to an interview.

For a confidential discussion around your finance recruitment requirements, contact [email protected]