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Hot seat: Graduate consultant, Dan Whitmore

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Posted on 24/02/2016 by Rachel Williams

After graduating, taking your first step onto the career ladder can be overwhelming. Recruitment is an increasingly popular choice for graduates, as it is a highly rewarding industry with opportunities for rapid progression.

Consultant, Dan Whitmore, joined Cast UK a year and a half ago on our Purchasing & Supply Chain team, recruiting for engineering & manufacturing roles in the West Yorkshire. Dan began his career in recruitment after graduating from the University of York with a degree in Mathematics. Here’s what he enjoys about working at Cast UK:

1. What attracted you most about a career in recruitment?

I actually got into it quite by accident! I went to a few careers fairs and met quite a lot of people who told me that their jobs were ‘Fantastic, great fun, you’ll love working at this company, etc.’, it was only really the recruitment companies that said actually, it’s really hard work but it’s very rewarding. They told me that if you’re willing to put in the time and the effort then it’s very meritocratic, and that’s what attracted me really. It wasn’t just all buzz words about how great your career will be, it was more a case of if you work hard then you’ll be rewarded, and that’s what drew me into recruitment in the first place.

2. How would you describe the beginning of your career in recruitment? What did you do in your first few weeks?

We had 2 weeks of fixed training, this was mainly classroom learning with all of the managers and senior consultants. They sat with us and talked us through how everything works and fits together; the client cycle, how to manage candidates, how to take a brief on a role, even with the IT we were given a course on how to deal with all of that. Then we got on the phones, talking to clients about their requirements and talking to candidates about the roles. 18 months down the line and here I am!

3. What has been your biggest success in recruitment so far?

Probably the first fee! I think everyone must say that; the first time you actually land a deal and somebody gets a job because of the time you’ve spent talking to them. It’s pretty cool, I find it really rewarding when you find someone a job that didn’t have one when you first started to talk with them and it’s down to your hard work.

4. How would you describe your working environment?

It’s really good, I really enjoy it. I’ve got a good team around me and we’re all friendly; sometimes you have to just laser focus in to concentrate but we do have a lot of fun. I guess you could say we have a bit of ‘banter’. It’s noisy enough when you need it to be but when you just need to crack on with work it’s great environment too.

5. What do you think makes a good recruitment consultant?

Thick skin; you’ve got to have a really thick skin in this job because there are a lot of recruitment agencies out there and to stand out in the market you’ve got to have a strong personality. Over the phone it can be challenging to engage with people and you can get knocked back a lot. You’ll have candidates who aren’t interested in your jobs and you’ll have clients who are being bombarded and don’t want the people you might have for their roles. I think the ability to handle rejection is one of the key things that you need.

6. What is the most rewarding aspect of the job?

I think that everything you do here is your own work and everything you reap comes as a result of that; so if you put so much in, you’ll get so much out. I don’t think there are many jobs where you can track very clearly what you’ve put in and then see the exact rewards that you’ll get out of it.

7. What advice would you give to any graduate considering a career in recruitment?

Meet as many recruiters as you can! I think before I took this job here I met with maybe 6 or 7 different agencies which all had very different atmospheres and feels to them. Some were very ‘hard sales’ and some had a bit more of a family feel. So, I would just say try and meet as many different agencies as possible to get a feel for them because if you don’t fit in with the culture then the chances are you’ll struggle. When you get the right team around you, you’re much more likely to last a long time in that role.

8. Finally, what do you enjoy the most about working at Cast UK?

Probably the team, it sounds really cheesy but I have a really great time with my colleagues. I think the people around you and making sure you join the right company is really important. Having a friendly and supportive atmosphere is great and I think we definitely have that here!

Cast UK are looking to double the size of our team in 2016. So if you are considering a career in recruitment and would like to be a part of a company committed to your development, then find out more about our opportunities here or contact Rachel today on 0161 413 6902 or email rachelwilliams@castuk.com.

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