Monday Musing by Travel Recruitment Specialist: Rebecca Fernandes

Read more about recruitment and sales tips on her personal blog:

Happy Monday, happy Labor Day! I can’t tell you how much this three-day weekend has been needed! This year has been a total whirwind and I truly can’t believe we are now officially in the dawn of autumn. My favorite part of the year, fall always seems to promise new beginnings: the start of the holiday season, the winding down of the year, and crisp cool mornings.

Today I wanted to touch on success in recruiting/headhunting – whatever you want to call it. I’ve been a recruiter for healthcare contract workers for a whopping eleven years now – an amount of time I can’t even believe is real. I started in 2010, right in the midst of a depression and job shortage for college grads who didn’t have much experience. I took the offer, just expecting this to be a short term pit stop on the way to a successful career in sales. I figured I’d pick up some job experience, then move on. I never expected to love recruiting, and to find such success with it. I not only stayed in the industry, but also at the same company all these years later.

Recruiting is definitely not for the faint of heart. Here’s a few things I’ve learned over the years that helped me find success in this cutthroat industry.


The big one. Salespeople are looked down upon as being sleazy – the “used car salesman” mantra. Recruiters are no different. Many people come in to talk to you with guard up, thinking you are not going to be out for them, taking advantage of them, etc. It’s so important to break down those walls and build rapport, and that is done by being open and honest from the get-go. Letting the candidate know you are looking to be a partner breaks down to a lot of simple things: following through with what is said – letting them know all the details on any job/interview/offer (good AND bad!) help break down those walls and build that relationship.


This really does go hand in hand with building that rapport and shedding that “salesperson” image that so many people distrust off the bat. You want to come off as a human to those you are repping. Make sure they know something about you! Tell them about your life, your family, your background. Have a social media presence that you are using to connect with your candidates, whether it’s your personal or business account. Post “real” photos – not just your company headshots. Share stories, articles, and more than just your “work” life. Become a real person and you will not only gain trust, but help gain friendships that can lead to referrals and long term working relationships.



You must be curious about the people you are talking to in order to find success recruiting. Ask questions! When you have exploration/qualifying calls, turn off all your distractions and be fully tuned into that conversation. Become genuinely engaged in the conversation you are having and make it your mission to get to know the person at the other end of the line. Know what motivates them, what their ambitions are, and what their current setup is. It will help you hone your professional expertise to tailor to their personal and professional ambitions – they both always go hand in hand.


You develop this as a recruiter, but you MUST trust your gut instinct. The longer you’re in recruiting the easier this becomes. Trust it! If you feel that there is a bad feeling, a red flag, etc – follow through on those hunches to dig into why you are feeling this way.


It’s easy in recruiting to turn to a factory line mentality – process your person and move on to the next. This is not the way to grow a true long term desk of success. The candidate experience does not just end when the contract is signed! Your follow up is what will open the floodgates for referrals and long term working relationships.

This ties back into your exploration calls. You should know something about your candidate! Experiences are great to gift (spa treatments, for example). In my experience the smallest gestures usually turn the best results. A $10 gift card for coffee after a rough week can mean the world to someone. Wishing a happy Birthday can touch someone- just the fact that you remembered usually shocks candidates! Even something like checking in when you know the weather has been bad in their hometown can do wonders. Come up with a plan to come up with a great candidate experience. The book Never Lose a Customer Again covers this in great detail, and is a great read for recruiters and entrepreneurs.

It’s important to note with this that you want your candidate experience to be genuine. You shouldn’t just be throwing some money someones way with no thought or care to it and expect it to churn results. Remember to give care and thought and try to differ every candidates to tailor to them to have maximum effect.


Finally, you shouldn’t work with every person that happens to come across your desk. Be picky. Work with those of excellent caliber, someone you would feel pleased to represent you. Someone you *want* to get a phone call from. This will not only keep your mental health better on the job, but it will allow you to take pride in what you’ve built.


Are you looking for superstar healthcare candidates to be a part of your long-term employment strategy? Contact Fortus Healthcare Resources to find out more about how our recruiters can help you today.


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