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Working Smarter, Not Harder: Effective Business Development

Effective business development and marketing is the most important aspect of being a big biller. Sure, finding the perfect candidate for an open search assignment is an exciting moment in any recruiter’s day and contributes signifi cantly to the overall success of achieving their goals. More important than fulfi llment, however, is the role that business development plays in the process.Effective marketing is the biggest factor in any recruiter’s success.

There are three key principles to establishing a strong marketing foundation. It all starts with obtaining high quality searches. The better the search you have to recruit on, the more placements you will make. Period. Most of us agree with this concept; however, practicing seems to have become a lost art. Time is money and you want to make sure you are spending your time on searches that will result in placements. Ask yourself about the searches you are currently working on – are you guaranteed a placement if you fi nd the person you are looking for? Resources are too valuable today to be risked on uncertainty. A good search means that “if” you find the right candidate, your client will hire them -- no maybes and no excuses.

The three key business development principles follow. Integrate them into your marketing approach to increase your effectiveness immediately.


Quality is everything. How do you achieve

it? It’s not just about getting Job Orders.

It’s about continually improving them so

you have great Job Orders. The better the

Job Order you are working on, the better

chance you will net revenue from your

efforts. This is true for Contingency as well as Retained

Search. The best way to increase the quality

of your searches is to increase the quantity of Job

Orders that you have. Here is how the principle

works. A starving man will eat a moldy loaf of

bread. Why? He’s starving; he will eat just about

anything. However, the more food he has to eat,

the more particular he will become. The principle

works the same with recruiters. The more Job

Orders you have to work on, the more selective

you can be about the ones you will chose to

work on. If you have an abundance of only “C” Job

Orders, chances are you will not see great results

and you will have to start focusing on getting “B”

Job Orders to improve your results. This is done

by doing more marketing and doing volume—

getting more Job Orders on the go. Once you have

upgraded to “B” job orders, you will no longer

want to take any more “B” job orders, and will

want to start looking for the true “A” Job Orders,

or real “Search Assignments.” A critical step in

this evaluation process is utilizing the Job Order

Matrix, a fantastic tool that will help you to qualify

the Job Orders that you get. (


Once you focus on quality and have continued

to upgrade your Job Orders to “A” Search Assignments,

continued marketing will allow you to then

focus on the next level, getting money down and

retained work. The quantity of Job Orders you achieve

(volume) will resolve the quality of the Job Orders.