A recruitment sales forecast is when you report on the placements you plan to make - and the money you intend to bring in to your agency - in the coming week, month or quarter.
It might sound like recruitment forecasting is something that's only interesting to your manager, but in practice it's a process that can do amazing things for your own progress towards KPIs and targets.
Great sales forecasting is all about taking control of your numbers and learning from them to increase your numbers over time.
Here are a few ways sales forecasting will benefit you as a recruiter.
1. Forecasting removes nasty surprises
When the end of the quarter is in sight, the last thing you need is to suddenly realise you’re behind on your recruitment targets with no way of pulling it back.
Learning to forecast accurately week-to-week will make you hyper-aware of your pipeline, meaning targets will never run away with you again.
2. It gives you complete control of your pipeline
Staying in control and delivering under pressure are two skills every recruiter needs to master.
The good news is, sales forecasting is your greatest ally in this respect: By monitoring your pipeline more accurately, you'll gain greater control over what's on your desk.
That way, you can manipulate situations to your benefit – no matter what challenges the market throws your way.
3. Forecasting helps you identify your easiest salesThe key to being a top biller is knowing exactly which prospects are most likely to convert and focussing all your energy on them.
Forecasting is different for everyone: the recruitment clients you find easiest to make placements for won’t be the same as your colleagues. That’s why doing your own forecasting is so important – it tells you a lot about where to find your low-hanging fruit.
The sooner you start forecasting in detail, the quicker you'll be able to identify the big winners in your pipeline and focus your BD strategy on others like them.
Qualifying sales like this will also help you cut out the time-wasting recruitment prospects that you know deep down will never convert.
4. Future-proof your pipelineSituations that negatively affect your recruitment pipeline often appear out of the blue – this is just part of working in a business where people (candidates) are your currency!
But if you’ve forecast properly and you have a stable pipeline, these sorts of surprises shouldn’t impact your pipeline too heavily.
While one placement might drop off, or be pushed back, there will always be something else to work on and forecast in its place.
5. Forecasting keeps your boss happy
The bottom line is that recruitment is sales and this means sales forecasting is an essential part of the job of being a recruiter.
There are so many reasons why forecasting keeps recruitment managers happy: it keeps you accountable for your output, keeps you realistically on track towards your KPIs and gives you measurable results you can learn from.
The sooner you equip yourself with the tools and knowledge to accurately forecast the probability of every placement, the happier both you and your boss will be. Hit this sweet spot and you could very likely be looking at a promotion!
To find out how to start forecasting effectively (and have a go of our free placement probability scorecard) download the eBook below.
Becki is the Senior Content Marketer here at Firefish! She heads up our award-winning recruitment blog.