Author: veebee

How to be a successful IT contractor

With so many digital transformation and change projects occurring across organisations there is an intensifying demand for IT contractors. Employers are capitalising on the flexibility of a contractor workforce which they can easily scale up or down dependent upon project demands.

With a growing desire for flexible workforces, employers are more open to engaging with contractors and appreciate the specific value and skill sets they bring. Contractors too are realising their value in this market, and many are relishing a rewarding career, negotiating good rates for themselves as well as enjoying the benefits of flexi-working.

Clients see you as the specialist in a particular area for a position they cannot fill with current staff. The company does not have an expert as qualified as you. By fulfilling this role, you are providing the client with a productive advantage. The client isn’t forced to train someone less qualified, and there is now someone, you, present with a prosperous track record.

Whether you are applying for a position or in one already, smart contractors are always on the lookout for ways to leverage experience to gain further contracts. Here are some tips to impress both current and potential employers:

Be reliable

Being on time and completing work reliably to a high standard within agreed timeframes goes a long way toward building trust. Employers will remember you as a person they can count on to be through the door on time, handing in tasks before deadlines and showing up to meetings prepared. There’s no better way to make a good impression and become a contractor of choice.

Part of being reliable means knowing how to set expectations. Set deadlines for projects with a bit of wiggle room and you’ll impress your employers by delivering ahead of time. 

Upskill yourself

Unlike full-time employees, contract workers have fewer opportunities to upskill on the job. Often, workers pick up skills slowly over years on a job, but you won’t have this luxury, which means you need to take upskilling into your own hands.

Be sure you’re covering the basics: stay up-to-date with industry trends and standards. But beyond that, show employers that you’re committed to your profession by undertaking short courses in your free time. This will be a major boost to your CV, and allow you to negotiate higher rates based on your skill set.

Of course, any time you come across the opportunity to upskill while on the job, raise your hand. This shows initiative to your employer, and it allows you to pick up new skills while you’re being paid. 

Keep abreast of the latest tech: Contractors keep abreast with the latest technologies by attending formal courses, meetups, conferences and boot camps.

Also commonplace is reading industry magazines, subscriptions and relevant blogs to increase knowledge.

Hone your soft skills: IT contractors are also aware that soft skills are just as important as technical ability and have now become the real differentiator that characterises top talent. Additionally, the more adaptable and flexible contractors are, the easier it is for them to thrive in their roles.

Be professional

One of the benefits of contracting is the freedom it allows – you have a lot more power to set the terms of your employment than full-time employees do. 

However, that doesn’t mean you can treat a contract position as though you were working from home. Be sure you have a full understanding of the expectations of the workplace – ask about dress code and workplace policies and then strive to meet them. 

Even if you turn around the best work your employer has seen from a contractor, he or she won’t think highly of you if you can’t meet professional standards and this could negatively impact future opportunities.

Fit into the culture

While the benefits of integrating into the team might not be visible in the short term, it could lead to future hires or recommendations. In addition to being professional at all times, go a step further to find out what makes your new office tick.

You can start by asking the employer to give you a rundown of company culture: What are their values? Do they have any regular events or office functions? 

To truly get a good idea of the soul of your new company, you should start building relationships with your new colleagues. Engage with people in the office kitchen, invite your desk buddy for coffee breaks and say yes to after work socialising to get a better picture of how the office works. 


Whether your contract is for five weeks or five months, it’s important to always be networking – whether that’s by building relationships with your current co-workers and managers, meeting people in other teams or divisions or attending networking events outside the company. As a contractor, your reputation for reliability and professionalism is an essential one – your reputation may precede you in your next contract.

You’ll need to develop some of your own networking tools, since they won’t be provided by your employer. This could mean designing your own business cards or building a digital portfolio that showcases your skills. 

When bringing a successful contract to a close, you’ll likely have a meeting with your manager to wrap things up. This is the perfect time to let him or her know that you enjoyed your time at the company and that you’d be keen for future opportunities down the line. 

Networking is key: Making connections and networking was considered key for upskilling by 52% of respondents. 42% said interacting with online user communities is also beneficial to help keep their skills relevant. The opportunity to pool experience and expertise, and share knowledge with millions of tech experts around the world is a no-brainer.

Utilise connections & recruiters: More than half of the contractors we spoke to are partnering with a recruiter (55%) to find their next role. At Hays, we have 120+ dedicated IT consultants working across ANZ and an average of 2,100+ IT contractors working through us on a weekly basis.

Your contracting work is only as good as your last so engage with the client, grasp their feedback, and enquire if there are other available contracting roles. There may be another role for you at the same company but with a different team. Keep this in mind during your contract term.
Ask clients to supply a recommendation and/or testimonial to post on your website and/or LinkedIn. Online referrals hold significant weight to potential and repeat customers.

Advantages of hiring through a Recruitment Agency

Do you have a vacancy in your team? Are you agonising over whether to hire directly or through a recruitment agency? These are some of the reasons we think that using an agency is a great idea:

Extensive Networks
Some roles are hard to fill and the perfect candidate can be hard to find. If quality candidates aren’t responding to job advertisements it may be because they don’t see themselves as the ideal candidate, or they simply aren’t checking job ads regularly. Agencies have many networks or ‘talent pools’ with candidates of varied experiences and qualifications. They have the potential to leverage their networks to help connect you to people with a range of skills and experiences, many of whom wouldn’t be actively job seeking and potentially missing your advert. According to LinkedIn, 12% of the workforce is actively looking, but 85% would consider a change if the opportunity is right. There’s a strong chance that a good recruiter will know how to reach them.

Brand Promotion
If you’re still not convinced on why using a recruitment agency may be the right move, the decision to do so can bring some added benefits that may be difficult to quantify immediately, but are nevertheless very real. Unless you’re Google or Apple, you probably don’t have thousands of qualified candidates camping outside your door and lining up to work for you. A good recruiter will “sell” your company to a candidate.

Quality of Applicants
If you have ever advertised a role directly you may agree that a lot of applicants may not be good matches for the role. On average, over 80% of CV’s received aren’t given serious consideration by hiring managers. Significant time will be invested in filtering, assessing, matching and communicating with unsuitable candidates. Internal HR/Recruitment teams that are time and resource poor may not be able to run a thorough matching process. Using a recruitment agency should mean that you only see job seekers who have been pre-selected to match all the criteria that you are looking for and who are worthy of serious consideration for an interview.

Time Saving
There are are time constraints to performing a thorough candidate search, so it is often easier for managers to interview from an agency shortlist – in fact many hiring managers, themselves possibly placed by recruitment agencies in the past, often favour third party recruiters. There is little doubt that a hard pressed HR or in-house team can benefit from the networks of a trusted agency partner. Many will see the recruitment fee as a worthwhile investment and a significant time saver, time that can be spent more effectively, working on strategic business initiatives.

The Guarantee
In addition to the recruitment help, all good agencies offer guarantee periods. If the hire doesn’t work out, you don’t pay and they start the search over, not you. If you look back at the staff turnover you’ve had, how much can be attributed to rushed hires, lack of screening, or settling/compromising just to fill that spot? When you use a recruitment agency you stop making those mistakes on your own, and start making them work in your favor.

Quality People can save you time in sourcing and short-listing candidates; find candidates who wouldn’t find you on their own; and allow you to spend more time focusing on your job. Contact us for a free and confidential discussion about the needs of your business.

First day at a new job

Starting a new job is very exciting but it can cause some
people a level of anxiety, even for the most experienced of professionals.

Here are 3 easy tips for making a good impression on day one of a new gig:

  1. Introduce
    . The most comfortable scenario is to wait for others to introduce
    you, but there’s no harm or shame in introducing yourself to other team
    members. It demonstrates confidence and a willingness to integrate into an
    established team environment. It will help you to establish professional and
    personal relationships with your co-workers from the outset. Talking to new
    people will relax you because you’ll realise that your new colleagues are good people
    and they’ll help you settle in. They all know what it’s like to be the new kid,
    allow them the opportunity to make your transition as smooth as possible.
  2. Remember
    Name recall is a difficult skill, particularly when you’re faced
    with a situation in which you’re meeting several people at the same time.
    Remembering names requires some practice, it may help to repeat their name
    twice or three times in the initial conversation. “Hi Jane, my name is Darren.
    Lovely to meet you Jane. What is your role in the team Jane?”
  3. Smile.
    Your colleagues don’t know you yet, and the power of a warm and friendly smile
    can not be overstated. Your smile conveys friendliness, it makes you
    approachable, and it will contribute to your new colleagues’ willingness to assist
    your transition into your new role.

If you’re starting a new role soon and you’re feeling a
little bit anxious, feel free to reach out to the Quality People team on (03)
9576 6388 for some free coaching. We wish you every success for your new job!

How to manage non performing staff

Handling difficult conversations is one of the reasons you got where you are. Another reason is that one day you had a manager who was patient enough to teach and guide you, to accept your mistakes, and to allow you the opportunity to learn from them. Now that you’re in that position, you have the duty to your company and your staff to afford them the same opportunity.

You may be tempted to allow poor performance to slide, hoping it will improve by itself. It won’t. An underperforming employee can have a negative impact on the rest of the workplace, because other employees are forced to pick up the slack. This can lead to feelings of resentment which could ultimately lead to the wrong staff members leaving the business.

Tips to handle these situations:

Assess the situation objectively

Is this an employee who consistently does not meet performance standards, or a good employee who has hit a slump? Look at each situation in isolation. Try not to let the frustrations of missing that deadline cloud your overall picture. There could be a combination of numerous factors that contributed to the deadline being missed. It’s important not to point all the blame in one direction. Also, it may be a good time to look in the mirror, what could you have done differently during the course of the project? Take responsibility and alter your behaviour next time.


Don’t assume you know the underlying causes of the non-performance. It’s time to call a meeting and listen. Sit down with your employee and ask how work is going. What are their frustrations? Find out if your employee is aware of the performance issues or not. Only once you know what the real issue will you be able to find a solution and move forward.

Focus on Facts

Receiving negative feedback is never easy for staff members, and the employee is likely to take it personally. To help prevent that from happening, focus on the facts, giving clear examples of times when the employee failed to meet the expectations of the job. Difficult conversations should be held sooner rather than later, delaying these little chats could cause the unwanted behaviours to become a pattern.

Work on a Solution Together

This is an opportunity to collaborate with your employee to come up with a solution together. Giving your employee a chance to take ownership of the situation is empowering, and it is more likely to provide that much needed buy-in. As you work on a solution, outline clear objectives and necessary actions to meet those objectives. See if the employee needs extra training or resources that would help him or her perform better. Document these discussions and get them to agree with the suggested course of action in writing.

Work out what you can do to help

Once you’ve formulated a plan, create a schedule to follow up regularly (at agreed intervals) and assess the employee’s progress and address any challenges that have come up. Take responsibility for their training.

Actually help

Nothing like providing the support you’ve said you’ll provide. Remember that boss who nurtured and supported you all those years ago? The one that, without him, you wouldn’t be where you are today? Be that boss.

Internal Interview tips

Sometimes in your career you might be faced with the situation
in which you’ll be required to attend an internal interview. You may need to
reapply for role after a fixed term contract officially ends; there may be a
restructure which has resulted in newly created positions; there may be a
promotion opportunity for you.

These are some tips for nailing your next internal interview:

Don’t assume that just because you know the interviewer, they’ll
do you any favours

Don’t treat your internal interview as a formality, you have no
idea how many other candidates (internal or external) are applying for this
role. It is definitely an advantage to have an existing relationship with the
interviewers, it will help you feel relaxed, but you’ll still need to charm
them! The answer to ‘why are you the best candidate for the role’ should not
simply be ‘because I’ve already been doing it”. Ensure you prepare your key
achievements prior to the interview so you can confidently demonstrate your
value to the organisation – the panel may not remember everything you’ve
achieved to date, it’s your job to remind them.

You would be well advised to mentally treat the interview as an external interview and that nobody on the interview panel has met you before.

Ensure you understand what the role is designed to achieve

It is important to have a strong understanding of the job
responsibilities and ensure you are familiar with the organisation’s strategic
direction. Familiarise yourself with the position description and the company’s
business plan. If this is a newly created role, ask for information from
managers or the project team to get a better understanding for the reason and
strategic shift.

Play to your strengths

Whilst it is not the deal clincher it is definitely an advantage
to already be in the role you’re applying for. Highlight your understanding of
the organisation’s culture, and the existing networks or relationships you have
developed whilst in the role. Provide examples of when you have collaborated effectively
with other staff members.

Prepared for questions about any gaps in your experience

If your current manager is interviewing you for the role, there’s a fair chance that they’ll have identified some areas for your future developement. Be proactive before the interview to determine any gaps in your experience and the role. Suggest ideas and solutions about how you would approach the reduction of these gaps.

Highlight your experiences from previous jobs

It is easy to only focus on your current role and the experience
you currently have, when, actually, this is a great opportunity to remind the
panel of prior experiences you can bring to the role from your previous

Body Language during the interview

To be on the safe side, bring a spare copy of your resume to the interview. We advise arriving at least ten minutes early as interviewers are unimpressed by lateness and will rarely accept excuses from prospective employees.

A firm (but not bone crunching) handshake with a big smile will do wonders when you first meet your interviewer. Some small chit chat from the reception area to the interview room will also help. These are the vital seconds (not minutes) in making your first impression.

Body language and other forms of non-verbal communication are important elements in the way an interviewee performs. Appearing relaxed and trying to act naturally is easier said than done but good appearance is mostly a matter of assuming a position that you are comfortable with. We suggest sitting up straight, leaning forward slightly and always maintaining good eye contact with the interviewer or panel. Looking disinterested will limit your options.

If offered a drink this can help and can be used as a prop to perhaps give you some time to answer a difficult question. By accepting a drink it does show that you are fairly confident and reasonably relaxed.

Power-pose your way to interview success

by Jane McNeill, Director, Hays Australia

The statistics on how much we communicate through our body language are widely known and available – one well-known study believes it accounts for 55 per cent. Your interviewer will certainly be watching what you communicate through your body language, which could ultimately affect whether you’re successful.

Your body language will also have a big impact on your own thinking; whatever pose you choose to adopt will only further propagate what you’re feeling. 

Research from Princeton University has found that by proactively altering your body language you can actually change your frame of mind. If you’re hunched over and fidgeting then you’re only going to heighten your anxiety, if you’re sat straight with your chin up then you’ll exacerbate your feelings of confidence. “It’s not so much mind over matter as it is matter over mind,” says our CEO Alistair Cox in this Viewpoint blog.

Sitting yourself up for success

You’ve done as much research as you can about the interviewer and the business ahead of time – the least that will be expected of you, you’ve considered the questions that might crop up and thought of a few of your own, you’ve even planned the outfit that you’re going to wear – don’t let all this preparation go to waste by adopting lazy body posture!

Do you know how much you can tell about someone’s personality simply by observing how they sit in an interview? Even if you have the perfect CV and flawless answers to tough questions, negative body language could be enough to deny you the job. For example, if you are slouched in the chair, tapping your foot or fidgeting, you’ll come across as disinterested and, worse, rude.

Your 5 step checklist

With that in mind, here’s how to use your body language to create as positive an impression as possible:

1. Come prepared

Preparation for an interview always builds confidence and when you’re confident you have fewer body language issues. If you struggle with confidence then try just pretending to be confident – this is one of the tips offered in Susie Timlin’s ‘7 ways to communicate confidence’ blog. Your body language and personality could be the game changer if you are up against someone with the same qualifications and experience. Practice it with a friend or family member; tell them what to look out for.

2. Wait patiently

You begin to be judged on your interview performance as soon as you walk in the door of the building. It’s common practice for the receptionist to report back to the interviewer on your general demeanour and attitude; even slouching in the waiting area could cost you. Spend the short period before the interview thinking about how you will say hello, all the while sitting in a straight and upright neutral position.

Our CEO advises spending five minutes before a big interview or meeting adopting a “powerful, non-verbal position in private”. Forcing your body language into this pose helps to make you appear (both to others and yourself) more confident and able to handle the stress.

3. Sit confidently

Once in the interview room rest your arms on the arms of the chair or your legs and try and keep them there. While using gestures to convey a point can help show your passion, excessive hand movements can make it seem like you are trying to express yourself a bit too frantically; let your words do the talking. Folding your arms and legs can be seen as an aggressive stance; something which will count against you if you’re being interviewed for a very social, team dependent role!

Avoid touching your face and hair as it distracts the interviewer – they might think you are not comfortable with the questions being asked.

4. Maintain eye-contact

Make lots of eye contact during the interview, both when you are listening and when you are speaking. It’s a great way to convey a sense of calmness and control, but don’t go overboard. It’s not a staring match and it’s normal for the other person to break off contact throughout the interview. This is a very important form of non-verbal communication.

5. Sign-off with a smile

After you’ve pulled off a flawless verbal and non-verbal interview performance sign it off with a handshake and a smile. A firm grip, sustained eye contact, a genuine smile and the usual pleasantries are the perfect way for the interviewer to remember you.

A final thought

Even if you are not feeling confident you can give off the impression that you are by adapting your body language. Sitting up straight, communicating clearly, maintaining eye contact and smiling are the main pillars of body language interview success.

What’s even more surprising than the fact your body language can affect someone else’s perception of you is research that shows it can even affect your own brain chemistry – you can hear more on this in Amy Cuddy’s TED talk.

How to nail a job interview

The interview will be the primary method of selection for the majority of positions we recruit. Below are some suggestions that, together with guidance from our staff, may help you to improve your interview performance for the greatest chance of success.

What is a potential employer commonly trying to assess?

In every interview, no matter how junior or senior the position, the interviewer will likely be probing for the answers to three basic questions:

  • Can you do the job well? (Your skills, qualifications, experience)
  • Will you do the job? (Your motivation, attitudes and career goals)
  • Will you fit into the team? (Your cultural match)


The better prepared you are, the more relaxed and comfortable you will be when the interview questions begin.

Developing an understanding of the business before the meeting can be a vital component of securing a role. Handy information can often be found from the company website, annual reports, and a simple internet search. LinkedIn is another valuable tool but don’t be tempted to send a LinkedIn connection or Facebook friend request to your interviewer!

It is common for one of the first interview questions to be “what do you know about our us?”.

It is also valuable to spend some time reviewing your own CV and have a clear understanding of how the key responsibilities and achievements of your prospective role link to your previous employment.

Focus on the skills you believe offer most value to your prospective employer. Whenever possible, relate your skills and experience to the role requirements and always have practical examples ready to support your statements. Be aware, particularly for senior candidates, there can be an idea that “my experience or results speak for themselves”. Remember that job interviews are a competitive process, so give yourself the best chance by explaining not only what was achieved but how you made it happen.

Review some probable answers to likely questions in the interview. Provide answers that are tailored to the position and paint a picture of you as being positive and with the potential to add value. It is also essential that you prepare your own questions so that, not only can you be sure that this is the right opportunity for you but also so that you can demonstrate you are particular in regard to the opportunity you are looking for.

Always treat the interview as a two-way discussion and answer questions honestly, directly and keep to the point. Everyone present will be focusing their attention on you, so clouding your answer with jargon or evading the issue will be more obvious than you think. If you are not certain about a particular question, do not be afraid to ask if it can be rephrased. Listen, never interrupt and answer only what is asked.

The little things

  • Presentation can have a large influence on first impressions. Always attend an interview in corporate attire and if in doubt always err on the side of more formal as opposed to underdressed.
  • Be clear about the exact time, date and location of the interview as well as who you are meeting and be there five to ten minutes before the interview.
  • Listen as well as talk. This will give you valuable clues as to the responses required. Wait for the question to be concluded before commencing your response.
  • Be aware of your body language. Interviewers will pick up on a lack of congruence between what your mouth your body are saying.
  • Answer questions informatively but briefly. Never embellish the truth but don’t be afraid to sell your skills and accomplishments.
  • Avoid negativity in statements and body language. Interviewers look for positive, likable people and any persistent negative characteristics such as a lack of interest, enthusiasm or purpose regarding your career will reflect poorly.

End of the interview

At the end of your interview, smile and thank the people involved for their time. While decisions and job offers are usually made some time after the interview(s), so it would not be appropriate to ask for an assessment of your performance.

Interview your interviewer

During an interview, it’s customary for you to get a chance to ask your own questions to find out whether the company is a good fit for you. This is the perfect opportunity to work out whether it’s the job you’ll love.

Ask the interviewer what the traits of successful people in this company are and compare it to what you’ve established about yourself. This should help you work out if you’d fit in with the existing team.

Working on finding a job you’ll love is about more than just your duties. Organisational structure, company culture and employees’ insights will all play a role, so make sure you’re doing all you can to work out where you think you’ll be happiest.

‘Do you have any questions for us?’

Towards the end of the interview, you will usually be asked if you have any questions of your own. Be confident when asking your questions and use them to score additional points in your favour.

Examples include:

  • Why is the position available?
  • What training and induction will be given?
  • What prospects are there for personal and professional development?
  • What are the company plans for the future?
  • When can I expect to hear from you?
  • What skills and attributes do successful people at your company usually have?
  • What do you like best about working at the company?
  • What results are expected from me?
  • What specific problems are you hoping to solve during the first six months?
  • What communication style do you prefer?
  • What are your goals for the department?

How to use technology to land your dream job

Your dream job is out there, somewhere; you’ve just got to find it. And according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics there are plenty of options for you. In May this year there were approximately 146, 000 job vacancies in Australia, up 2.1% from February, and whilst it’s likely that out of all those positions there are some that don’t fall into that dream category of yours, unless you’re blessed with some kind of inhuman super job scouring strength, you won’t necessarily even be in a position to know.

Figuring out how to separate the wheat from the chaff in the job market can seem like a task of biblical proportions for your average job seeker, but for those willing to take advantage of the technologies available to them, finding the perfect role is more possible now than ever before.    

top tip 1: use your mobile

According to research conducted by Google and Ipsos Media in 2013, 77% of Australians don’t leave their homes without their device. Furthermore, 82% of the population uses their phone on the go with 75% also using a device at work. Needless to say, and as the ‘Our Mobile Planet: Australia’ report finds, smartphones are “indispensable to daily life”.

So how can your smartphone help you find that once in a lifetime role?

Start by using an effective platform to search for jobs. Sites that are optimised for mobile use don’t just look like miniature versions of a website, they are fully responsive, which means jobs are easy to view no matter where you are or what device you use. Features to help you find the right jobs include those on the new Randstad website like:

  • Simplified application processes (without lengthy application forms)
  • Easy to use navigation menus
  • Buttons positioned and sized for smaller screens
  • Adapted mobile advertising, if it applies

If you’re prepared, applying directly via a mobile device is oftentimes more efficient than using a desktop computer.

top tip 2: optimise your CV

Scott Belsky, Vice President of Community at Adobe, says, “Optimisation isn’t about making drastic changes…the key to optimisation is making incremental tweaks…” As such, you don’t need to reinvent your CV to get the most out of it; you just need to optimise it. According to Google’s ‘The New Multi-screen World’ report, 90% of people move between devices to accomplish a goal, so having a version of your CV saved to your mobile device will greatly decrease barriers that prevent you from applying to a job ad at a minute’s notice.

Users can also use cloud technology such as Google Drive, Dropbox and We Transfer to store and send resumes. Increasingly, employers are enabling job seekers to apply through sites such as LinkedIn and The Loop, which means you should ensure your CV is adaptable across multiple social platforms. If you choose to host your CV on a website, you may also wish to include key words and a simplified bullet point structure.

top tip 3: personalised search

Lastly, make searching for jobs even more efficient by taking advantage of the personalised search feature on the new Randstad website. Once you have created a myrandstad account, allow the technology to find relevant jobs for you based on your previous searches.

As the trend towards mobile continues to penetrate the recruitment industry, smart job seekers will get ahead by essentially automating processes. By using mobile devices, having their applications optimised for all opportunities and relying on recommended job ads based on previous user behaviour, these applicants are in a better position to find their dream job than those with no considered approach to utilising the technology around them.

Getting head hunted

Have you always wondered why your friends and colleagues seem to get that tap on the shoulder with amazing jobs offers, with perks and career progression?

You work hard, but sometimes, you feel a bit un-noticed. It’s time to get noticed! Here are 5 tips to help you on the way to being head hunted.

1. Your personal brand

We hear a lot about our own personal profile, and in a world of social media and communication apps, it is more important than ever to have a clean and clear online image that really reflects who you are and what you stand for. Your whole online presence is an ever changing resume, so keep it nice, and aim for continuity, integrity and interesting content.

2. Work beautifully

The very best recommendations will come from ex-colleagues, and managers, or even suppliers and customers. Remember the customer whose problem you solved? Remember when you didn’t yell at your supplier, but helped them resolve the issue? Remember when you created a new strategy and shared the credit with your team? If you work well with others, are highly regarded, and even if you work in a seriously difficult situation – the way you operate every day is your best advertisement.

3. Align yourself with influencers

Influencers are those people with a great profile online and excellent social connections. They know other ‘power’ people and often have senior roles. Most importantly, they are well respected in their space. They would be the type of people you would use as referees and they will naturally want to recommend you if they get the chance. Pay it forward, do a good deed, share a post of theirs – show them that you are engaged in their world.

4. Be visible & approachable

Get out there, go to industry events and start talking with people. Catch up for a coffee with contacts in industries that interest you. Make connections via Linkedin, start talking to recruiters, use your personal network as well. If the opportunity comes up, you can mention that you are open minded to new opportunities. Reciprocate too, if people ask you out for a coffee, take every opportunity, you never know where it will lead. Be generous with your time and support and don’t forget to switch your Linkedin profile to ‘open to opportunities’ to get the word out. (Need Linkedin profile advice?)

5. Keep your cool

When all the elements combine and you get that delicious mystery phone call with a job opportunity to explore, try not to get too excited and accept the role! A head hunter will make the first tenuous steps of communication after a swag of research. They already think you are a good option. You need to strongly consider whether the role is a genuine fit for you, in terms of wages, culture, industry and more. Most importantly, you need to understand that they are not ‘offering’ you the role, but just the chance to discuss and interview for it. Don’t be so flattered that you want to take the role straight away- this will actually send a red flag to the head hunter and could make you look a bit desperate.

By keeping these 5 points uppermost in your mind and being aware of the way you operate in your work and social life, you are well on the way to being head hunted. If you are working well and enjoying life, people will be drawn to you and exciting opportunities will start to drop into your lap!