When a recruiter at a staffing agency is trying to connect you with a project, you want to make sure you’re asking the right questions to determine if it is the best role for you. If it is your first time working directly with a staffing agency to identify your next position, you might be unsure of the right questions to ask him or her. If this is you, wonder no more! Below are eight essential questions to ask your recruiter.
1. What project will I be working on?
When you are being brought on as a contractor, it is usually for a specific job for a particular time frame. Instead of just a general idea of the department you would be working in, you can learn precisely what the client is looking to accomplish, what your overall goals will be, and the tools you will use.
2. What is the relationship between the client and the recruiter?
Your recruiter is your connection between both the staffing agency you will work for and the client. You want to learn more about his or her relationship with your next potential assignment. Understanding the duration of their partnership and how frequently they work together will help in getting extra insight, particularly when they have a long-term partnership. A recruiter who takes the time to learn your skills and passions and knows their clients very well will be more likely to guide you to the roles that will be the best fit for both.
3. Can the contract be extended?
It is important to know if there is a hard stop or room for flexibility. If it is a company you would like to stay at longer, it is good to know up front whether you will have that option. Find out what the initial term of the contract will be if there is potential for extension, and whether there are any restrictions on your or the client should you mutually agree to convert.
4. Is there a limit on how far a contract can be extended out?
Similar to knowing if the contract can extend, you want to know about any potential limits on duration. In some cases, there is a limit to whether a contract can extend and potentially how far out you extend. Your recruiter will likely let you know all of this upfront, however, make sure to ask if you do not get this information.
5. What are the benefits?
Benefits will vary based on the account you are assigned to and the agency you are working with, but you’ll want to know about eligibility and enrollment deadlines for benefits. Remember, the agency is your employer, and you will be on their payroll and benefit plan. Be sure to speak with your Recruiter or their team during onboarding for any questions you have on benefits.
6. What makes me a good fit?
Even if it seems like a good fit, learning exactly what the client wants may make it easier to determine if it’s the right role for you. A good recruiter who knows their client will share this with you: however, it never hurts to dig deeper. If a Recruiter wants to present you to their client, consider asking them a question, “what makes me a good fit?” That one question will help you determine if you are working with someone that genuinely understands your skills and how you want to apply them.
7. What else should I know about the company?
Because the recruiter works with the client, they might know the information you didn’t think to ask about. This question will help you learn more about the client and determine if it’s the right role to pursue.
8. When would I start?
Understanding the hiring timeline is also a factor. Typically, the client will at least have a rough idea for when you’ll start so you can see if it works with your schedule. It is essential to highlight any pre-planned time-off or vacations you have as well. This way, when you get the offer, there will be no surprises to the client if you have time-off planned shortly after your target start date.
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