Back in the day, to be a good contract recruiter you just need to know your ABCs – ‘Always Be Closing’.

But times have changed. As the UK workforce has become more in control of how and when they want to work, a contract recruiter has to have more going on behind the scenes to close the deals.

So, if you were wondering if you’d make a good contract recruiter, we’ve shared 7 traits you should have to succeed.

Whilst upskilling yourself in the space of contract recruitment, if you require support in terms of funding, back-office work or timesheets, Sonovate has got you covered. Get Started to scale your recruitment business with smart tech and funding solutions. 

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#1 Market knowledge

Like an all-seeing eye, a good contract recruiter knows what is going on in their target market. As a minimum, it’s essential that you know the key projects happening in your market over the next 3-6 months.

The more detail you know about your market, the better equipped you are to attract high performing candidates and fill more roles.

These details could be:

  • What roles are coming up with your current clients
  • What roles your candidates are being contacted about
  • What your candidates are meant to do on a day-to-day basis

Knowing this information means you are able to start sourcing suitable candidates, reach out to potential clients and have a fuller understanding of a role specification.

We regularly share data and insights about companies you should be paying attention to online, which is used by recruiters and agencies to get ahead of the competition.

#2 Constant business development

Top contract billers are always looking for new ways to develop and to connect with new clients and candidates.

A standard business development method contract recruiters go for is connecting with contractors on LinkedIn – but there are several other ways in which you can create good connections:

  • Attend relevant events where new clients and candidates will also be.
  • Market yourself to them – whether that’s a direct mail or email campaign.
  • Search the job boards to find potential clients who are looking to fill roles.
  • Go through freelance-focused sites to find candidates who are experts in their fields.

#3 Be a proactive contract recruiter

Being a proactive recruiter extends beyond cold calling clients and candidates.

A good recruiter never lets a contract come to an end without having another opportunity already lined up for the candidate. Alternatively, they prevent the contract from ending by presenting the candidate as invaluable to the client.

To really get the most out of your candidates, and to be a top biller, you need to do work with them to understand:

  • the roles they want to work.
  • their key responsibilities in the role they currently work in, as well as in the roles they would like to work in.
  • future projects they can add value to – whether that’s at their current role or at a new role.

#4 Check in with candidates and clients

To be a good contract recruiter, your relationship with your candidates and clients doesn’t stop when you’ve filled a role. From this point, you need to nurture both and be a constant point of contact.

By investing your time in maintaining a good relationship and flow of communication with them, you increase the likelihood that you will be able to work more with both – whether that’s through extending the contract or find suitable replacements.

#5 Obsess about metrics

Rather than just focusing on closing, a good contract recruiter also measures the success of their work. Analysing the impact of the work you do is key to being a top biller, as you can focus on what works best, and stop wasting time on the activities that aren’t performing well.

To calculate your metrics, you need to do the following three things.

  1. Judge every scenario numerically.
  2. Set yourself realistic goals.
  3. Make sure you hit the numbers you set out to achieve.

#6 Know your network inside out

The best contract recruiters close the deal before the phone goes down. How they do this is simple, yet difficult to do in practice.

They have an encyclopaedic knowledge of their contractors, where they’ve worked, their accomplishments and successes.

Above all, they have a number of contractors that are always ready and available to start immediately.

This means that they can instantly find the a small pool of the perfect candidates for a role, and they will save time by only putting forward the ones who are suitable and available.

#7 Stay goal oriented

Even when the workload is overwhelming – and a life in recruitment can often feel overwhelming – the best contract recruiters are able to remain positive and focus on reaching their goals.

To do so, you need to focus on the things you can effect:

  • Prioritise your workload
  • Keep track of where you’re at with each of your clients and candidates
  • Have realistic expectations of what you plan to achieve each day

Managing your workload around these three points will help you to remain driven, focused and on the right path to reach your goals.


This isn’t an extensive list of what makes a good contract recruiter, but these are definitely some of the key traits you need to make it in the business. So, set yourself the task of performing all of the above, and you’ll become a better contract recruiter in no time.

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Sonovate is an invoice platform designed to reduce admin, save time, and let you focus on growing your recruitment business. Choose from a funding and back-office platform for an all-in-one solution, or just funding to complement existing systems. Giving flexibility at times you need it, or growth engines when the time is right. 

Book a short demo with our team at a time that suits you to find out how Sonovate can help your business grow.