The life of a recruiter

By Jason Donnelly

I’m a multi-talented, multi-tasking, multi-directional (take my word for it), creative staffing mastermind. Maybe that’s not how I should start this, being that I just started here at TTS Staffing, last week. Then again, without that kind of thought process bouncing around the insides of my skull, I couldn’t do what I do.  When you staff for creative positions like I do, you have to understand the market, the people that are asking for the talent, and the talent themselves. I believe that with my background and MFA in Creative Writing, I am one of the few that really “gets it.”

Every day is a rollercoaster (pardon the cliché) of emotion. We get in to the office, open our email, and pray that we have email from someone responding to one of our ads, feedback on one of the resumes/portfolios we sent out, or any kind of positive response about who we work for. Most days, we come in to pictures of LOL cats and emails asking if we’ve heard any news about the position that we sent out the day before. Some days we don’t.

The rest of the day is dedicated to reviewing resumes with misspellings, portfolios that are in no way deserving of being looked at by the client, let alone by us staffers, and trying to look for a needle in a haystack (yes, that’s another cliché). When you’re hiring…anything, in NY, you’re going to see that there is competition, when you hire in the creative field, you better be the best of the best, because if you’re not, you don’t exist.

Let me be the bearer of bad news. If you want to work in an advertising agency and you don’t have any advertising experience, you’re not going to get the job. If you’re trying to get a job that pays 100k a year and last year you made $35k, you’re not going to get the job. If I ask you for your online portfolio, and your response is, “I don’t have one, but I have some photo-copies,” you’re not going to get the job. This industry is brutal, and even if you actually are the best of the best, a lot of people are still not going to like your work (let alone who you are as a person). That’s just a fact, accept it now, because if you don’t, you’re not going to make it.

 Finding that needle that I spoke of earlier is much harder than you might believe. Especially if you show your work to your mom like I do. Trust me, mine tells me how great my stuff is all the time.  Just today, I found the perfect candidate for a position, they had the experience, they had the portfolio, they had the connections, they had ‘it.’ So, I sent over the goods to the client. The client told me that they changed their mind. They didn’t want someone with the experience that they previously wanted. My day was spent finding a needle that was actually a tire iron. Sometimes, it’s not even your fault that you’re not the needle, so develop a skin impervious to needles early, but again, remember that most of the time, the reason you don’t get the job is you.

The reason that we do what we do, is for that one person, though. That one person that sends us an email saying, “thanks for all you do,” “I can’t believe I got the job,” “you’re the best recruiter I’ve ever worked with,” or anything really (we also take gifts, seriously, anything you’d like to drop off. I’m fond of bourbon, scotch, and dark beer). Our day in one sentence? TTS Staffing is here to connect the best of the best with the best of the best.            

Then again, I’ve been doing this a week, maybe I don’t get it…or do I?