Recruiting agencies

I'm due out soon and have been looking at recruiting agencies. What is the general feeling of recruiting agency's understanding the military system and using it to our advantage or is it pot luck if they get what training and experience we have.
I'm due out soon and have been looking at recruiting agencies. What is the general feeling of recruiting agency's understanding the military system and using it to our advantage or is it pot luck if they get what training and experience we have.
It's not up to the recruiting agency to sell you - you have to sell you. It is important for you to realise from the start that a recruiting agency is not working for you but for the hirer as they are the footing the bill. It is your CV that is the critical document and it needs to be written in a way that equates as far as possible your roles and experience to civilian contexts and makes you stand out from all the other CV's on the Agencies files. Make no mistake, you are a commodity as far as they are concerned. You have to make sure the Agency understands your attributes and experience in a way that they can sell to the employer as the first filter. If you get to the interview stage, then you have to do the same in front of the employer. I am not saying play down your military experience, far from it. Just make sure that people understand it. Welcome to the real world of employment and unemployment at the whim of budget controllers!
Twats. Seconded.

In my experience you'll spend ages jumping through their stupid hoops giving them all your info, get fucked about if your lucky and no contact at all from them if your not.

They'll not be interested in your Red Book, or whatever shite your given nowadays, they'll not help with transferring your mil spec quals into civvy speak, but they are very good at spamming your email inbox every day with jobs you a) are not qualified to do and b) wouldn't touch with a barge pole.

They'll charge a fortune to your temporary employers for your attendance there, and pay you a fraction of that, after they've fucked you about a bit more over some piddling admin bollox.

Agency workers are often treated with distrust by the regular workforce, including the management.

Miss out the middle man, and get stuck into researching the type of company you'd like to work for, and don't give it the big 'I'm ex military' because honestly, most places couldn't give a rats arrse how many tours you've been on or how many gongs you can swing. It can of course be an advantage if you use your military experience with subtlety. Good timekeeping, no sick days, loyalty, honesty, integrity and flexibility will count for a lot.

Civvies are a funny bunch to work for, so you should consider self employed. It's tough, but it can be cracked.

Good luck.
Mate you will just be a walking, talking bag of cash to them. I know this as I've 10 years experience. Register with at least 3 and let each of them know that you've done this as it will motivate them to get you a placement. Never wait for them to ring you, be proactive.
Thanks for the advice. Food for thought and definately need to square away a good cv. That's the next task.
Thanks for the advice. Food for thought and definately need to square away a good cv. That's the next task.
There is a member here with a good rep, who transposed all those pesky initials on a military style CV, into something approaching the English language. I can't for the life of me recall who it was, although someone will probably be along later with his name, and confirm if he is still doing it. No fee, just a promise that Hols 4 Heroes would get a bung.

In the meantime have a gander at this thread.
I think it was meridian who did the CV service.

I'm afraid you are going to have to suck up working with agencies. Other annoyances include asking you back to their office over & over to meet new members of the team. These meetings add nothing, but I suspect that the agents have targets of number of meetings held to get bonuses so they'll get you in to bump up numbers. It's similar with CVs - they look good if they have a huge portfolio of them even if most are never used.

I'd also beware a lot of the bespoke ex-military agencies. Of the many I contacted only one found me a possible opening but couldn't get me past the gatekeepers to interview; one offered some extremely odd CV advice & then never spoke to me again; & the rest made no contact whatsoever. Looking at a lot of their feeds all they do is find jobs on the net & in the newspapers and try and get you to apply through them so they then get a finders fee.

Sites like Monster & Jobsite are all very well, but you need to set your search parameters very tightly or you will be endlessly spammed with things that are not appropriate. Again, do not expect anyone who you apply to through these sites to actually be in touch with you.

It might be useful to get a bit more of an idea of where you want to go & what you'd like to do so we can recommend relevant agencies.
ashford_old_school:4493611 said:
Twats! That is all.

Beware agencies phoning you up and the person on the phone doesn't quite sound like they know what they're on about: they definitely don't.

In my experience they're snake oil salesmen and women out for a fast buck; be discerning and suspicious and be clear in your mind that it's not going to be a waste of your time pressing your suit and heading out for an interview.
I wont touch them with a barge pole, I always deal with the employer directly.
Don't forget the Home - RFEA
They only deal with Ex Forces so they understand what you can offer.

I'm due out soon and have been looking at recruiting agencies. What is the general feeling of recruiting agency's understanding the military system and using it to our advantage or is it pot luck if they get what training and experience we have.
Get yourself a LinkedIn account and network like crazy, the more people you add the more likely you will get seen and headhunted if you have a specific skill.

Agencies are fast going the way of the do-do its a totally new ball game now
Just had an email through from one of the Forces-specific agencies. I will say that this is an agency which did find me possibilities (although never an interview) and with whom I worked pretty closely so I do have a warm, fuzzy feeling about them:

Adaptability– servicemen amd women move to a completely new role every 2 / 3 years. The unwritten rule is that they are expected to hold their own within 6 weeks, and to be fully effective within 6 months. That’s an ingrained trait they aren’t going to lose on leaving the services.

Accountability– the military runs on procedures: if there is a process to apply then individuals from a military background will readily shoulder responsibility to their superiors for adhering to it, documenting it or indeed applying it imaginatively and in compliant fashion under demanding circumstances.

Teamwork– Officers and Senior NCOs (and the bulk of those whom we identify, screen and place fall into this bracket) have team leadership training and experience in spades, and are also well used to contributing as members of a multi-skilled team.

Problem Solving– contrary to the stereotype, whilst they are used to being told clearly what they have to do, military managers are allowed very considerable latitude in how they achieve their task. Again, this is a mindset which translates very effectively to business. It’s called initiative.

Relationship Building– military operations of the type the Armed Forces have been engaged in over recent years are hugely dependent upon positive influencing of the local community and security forces. There are excellent people coming on the market with plenty of experience of ‘tricky customers’.

Professionalism– these individuals will represent their parent organisation to the highest standards in terms of discipline, timekeeping, appearance and delivery on commitments.

Integrity– very highly valued in the military, and significant responsibility is simply not achieved without it.
This is all very lovely & quite true. However having experienced both sides of the fence I would not say that, in a serious business position at least, that anyone ex-Forces has these skills any more than the purely civilian managers I've met. In fact the holding one's own within six weeks and fully effective in six months seems a little slow for the demands of civvy street...

Edit to add:

The spelling mistake in the quote are from the newsletter, and there are others in the full version. Oops, could do better if trying to impress civvy employers with presenting a professional image. Show Again :wink:
Can only add to the Truckers side of Agencies, as it was only during my Truck driving days i used them.
Twats Twats Twats Twats Twats Twats Twats etc etc.
However! they can be useful if your skills aren't up to date [DCPC], aside from that best avoided.
Seriously, have you though about working abroad, both Canada and Australia, seem to have rode the recession well and they are both great Countries to work and live in?
A lot of recruiting agencies will take your cv, stick it through a computer programme, which will match the buzz words in the job spec to those on your CV, and often rank the cv according to the number of buzzwords matched. it may then get in the hands of a human being to be further scrutinised. To take advantage of this, print out the job ad, highlight the buzzwords, include them somewhere in your cv, but not just in a list of words or something.
As for jobsites such as monster etc, upload your cv, and remember to change it slightly every week or so, to keep it "fresh".
I'm not sure what the point of the RFEA is, all I got from them was "dont put military abbreviations in your CV",and they send me the same newsletter crap which I get from CTP.
Good luck.
Lie like **** then blag it. Everyone else does.
If you have a passing aquaint with something you are now an expert, if you know something you are a teacher.

Take no prisoners, lie, blag, fabricate and make it up. Look down upon the agency staff when you use a big word and they fail to understand it, use another one, they'll be on the back foot. Aim high.
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