MockQuestions

Temporary Staffing Recruiter Interview Questions

To help you prepare for your Temporary Staffing Recruiter interview, here are 30 interview questions and answer examples.

Temporary Staffing Recruiter was written by and updated on February 6th, 2021. Learn more here.

Question 1 of 30

What questions do you have for me?

How to Answer

It's always a great idea to have questions ready for the interviewer. Since you are interviewing for a recruiter role, this is an excellent opportunity to show the hiring authority that you have insightful questions! Review the company website and other online resources to ensure the queries you have are not mundane, or redundant. The last thing an interviewer wants to hear is a list of items you could have found the answers for from merely watching a video on their company site!

Here are some sample questions:

- When would you like to have this position filled?
- How long has this role been vacant?
- Is this a replacement search or a newly created role?
- What is your favorite part about working here?
- What is the company's primary goal for this position in the next 12 months?
- Is there anything from my background and experience that I can clarify for you?
- What do you see as the most significant change in this industry over the past three years?
- Is there any reason why you would not hire me?

Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

Next Question

30 Temporary Staffing Recruiter Interview Questions & Answers

  • Ask The Interviewer

    1. What questions do you have for me?

      How to Answer

      It's always a great idea to have questions ready for the interviewer. Since you are interviewing for a recruiter role, this is an excellent opportunity to show the hiring authority that you have insightful questions! Review the company website and other online resources to ensure the queries you have are not mundane, or redundant. The last thing an interviewer wants to hear is a list of items you could have found the answers for from merely watching a video on their company site!

      Here are some sample questions:

      - When would you like to have this position filled?
      - How long has this role been vacant?
      - Is this a replacement search or a newly created role?
      - What is your favorite part about working here?
      - What is the company's primary goal for this position in the next 12 months?
      - Is there anything from my background and experience that I can clarify for you?
      - What do you see as the most significant change in this industry over the past three years?
      - Is there any reason why you would not hire me?

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      1st Answer Example

      "I would like to ask if there is anything in my recruitment background on which you need clarification? Also, after discussing everything today, is there any particular reason why I would not be the best fit for this temporary recruiter role?"

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      2nd Answer Example

      "I appreciate you opening the floor for questions. I am wondering what your timeline is for a decision on this opening? Also, what was the biggest struggle the last recruiter encountered in this role?"

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

  • Behavioral

    2. What approach do you take when telling a candidate that they did not get the job?

      How to Answer

      It isn't easy to pick up the phone and tell a job seeker that your client chose someone else for the assignment. However, this is a big part of your role as a temporary staffing recruiter. Show the interviewer that you can navigate situations such as this, and discuss how you go about letting an eager candidate down easy. If you can, turn this response into a short role-play.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      1st Answer Example

      "When I need to tell a candidate that they did not get the job, I rip off the bandaid to not lead them on, but I do offer feedback if they want it. I will turn the call into a mini coaching session if the candidate is up for it! For instance, I would say, 'John, unfortunately, ABC client has decided to hire a different candidate for this forklift driver opportunity. They felt your background looked good; however, you could use further training on Raymond Reach. Please let me know once you have expanded your skill set to include this type of forklift, and I will happily submit your resume to this client again.' This method allows them to understand how to increase their chances in the future, and who wouldn't want that."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      2nd Answer Example

      "It is important to be straightforward and forthright when telling a candidate they did not get the job. Since I have such a high amount of interviews and client submissions, I need to make sure they all know where they stand, and what opportunities are not the best for them. First, I will call, rather than email. I have a script that I stick to while also adding in specifics related to their situation. I tell them why they did not get the job, and give two to three suggestion on what they could do to make their candidacy stronger in the future. My recommendations may include further training or even interview coaching. Most of the time, my temp candidates appreciate my candidness and always ask me to keep them in mind for future opportunities."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

  • Competency

    3. How would you make an average candidate appear more attractive to a client?

      How to Answer

      As a temp recruiter, you will that find many qualified job seekers look plain terrible on paper. The interviewer would like to know what you do to make a candidate appear more enticing to a client, before sending their resume or profile. Discuss the steps that you take to repackage or coach a candidate, making them easier to place. Express your interest in helping people to find suitable jobs, while also touching on why it's important to represent your agency professionally.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      1st Answer Example

      "I often see candidates who can be an excellent match for my client; however, their resume is vague, a total mess, or shows unexplained gaps. It's important to me that I present only the best to my clients so for that reason, I will coach these candidates on how to write a proper resume. Often I will work with them on these documents, ensuring they put their best foot forward."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      2nd Answer Example

      "Too often, I see highly skilled candidates being passed up for opportunities they are qualified to fill. Generally, this happens because the client, or potential employer, cannot see the fit. When presenting a candidate to my client, I will write a profile about them, highlighting the top skills that will benefit the employer, along with the candidates' most significant career wins. By pulling this valuable information out, it helps the client to see where the alignment is between their job description and the candidate's skill set."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

  • Competency

    4. Do you consider yourself a persuasive person?

      How to Answer

      The art of being an excellent communicator is also having the power of persuasion when necessary. There is a difference between persuasion and debating - or even convincing. Persuasion is used when you want to influence someone rather than tell them that they are wrong, and you are right.

      As you know, recruiters are well-trained and highly persuasive professionals. The power of persuasion is essential if you are pitching a candidate to your client. It is also a helpful skill when you want to gain momentum with your coworkers or have your boss better understand your approach on a staffing project.

      It is not a negative thing to be persuasive. Talk to the interviewer about whether or not you consider yourself to be a persuasive individual.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Competency

    5. What is your most successful strategy in attracting new candidates for your clients' temporary positions?

      How to Answer

      It's crucial for a temp recruiter to have a fresh pool of candidates, at all times. With technology today, and the internet at our fingertips, there are endless ways a temp recruiter can quickly attract new candidates to a job posting, ensuring a happy client with a filled position. Talk to the interviewer about the strategy that you rely on most often when it comes to being a talent magnet.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Competency

    6. Walk me through your process after receiving a new job order.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know that you are well-organized and that you fully understand your responsibilities, as a temporary recruiter. If you have many years' experience in recruitment, this question should be simple for you to answer. If you are newer to your career in recruitment, think about the tasks mentioned in the company's job posting.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Competency

    7. When interviewing a temp candidate, what is the most important question you could ask?

      How to Answer

      There are many excellent questions you could ask a temp candidate, but the bottom line is, you want to make sure they have an investment in this opportunity, are reliable, and trustworthy. One of the best questions you could ask a temporary candidate is if they are looking for a permanent opportunity down the road. If a temp employee's desire is to be hired on a full-time, permanent basis eventually, there's a great chance they will perform to the best of their ability. Tell the interviewer the most important question you ask in an interview and be prepared to discuss why this question matters.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Customer Service

    8. How do you maintain relationships with your clients?

      How to Answer

      Happy client relationships are everything to a recruitment agency, and the hiring authority wants to see that you are capable of maintaining their well-established client relationships while also creating new ones. Temporary recruitment is a competitive industry with many staffing firms vying for exclusivity with their clients. As you know, exclusivity can only happen when your clients are thrilled with your service and have an excellent rapport with you. Discuss the ways you ensure the best customer service.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Diligence

    9. How often do you look for opportunities to approach potential new clients?

      How to Answer

      This question is a sales based inquiry. The hiring authority wants to see that you keep your eyes open for opportunities to gain new clients, or take on more job orders from reviving a client who has not put in a job order in some time. Discuss the ways you approach opportunities. Be sure to show that you are enthusiastic about business development!

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Experience

    10. Tell me about your experience in terminations.

      How to Answer

      As a temporary staffing recruiter, there will be times when a candidate does not do their job well, and your client asks you to replace them. Other circumstances may also arise where the temp employee performance is excellent, but their assignment is ending much earlier than expected. Show the interviewer that you can approach difficult conversations productively and professionally.

      If you do not have experience with terminations, discuss how you believe they should be handled and have confidence in your ability to perform undesired tasks such as letting someone go.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Experience

    11. Do you have experience using an ATS? Which applicant tracking systems do you know best?

      How to Answer

      Most recruitment firms will use an ATS or applicant tracking system. This system collects and stores job applicants' resumes, personal information, interview notes, documentation, and candidate history.

      When a job seeker applies online to one of your job postings, their application, documents, and notes will automatically populate into your company's ATS, allowing you to quickly see how well they match to the role they have applied.

      Some of the most popular ATS programs will enable you to email a job seeker directly from the system, and even book interviews or push out bulk SMS messages.

      Popular ATS' include Taleo, Bullhorn, Kenexa, SAP Success Factors, and JazzHR. Discuss what you know about ATS features, and which systems you have used the most.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Experience

    12. Recruitment requires a lot of selling. Do you have any sales training?

      How to Answer

      Most temporary staffing recruiters will run a 360 desk. The term 360 means that you handle everything from client acquisition, business development for new job orders, finding the right temp candidates, placing them, and all the documentation required in between. Many of these tasks require the same skill set that a professional sales person would have. Discuss any sales training you have, and how you believe it will help you to succeed in this role. If you do not have any sales training, you could ask the interviewer for recommendations of online sales courses, or other helpful resources to grow your sales skills.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Experience

    13. Why would a client prefer to hire a temp over a permanent employee?

      How to Answer

      There are a few primary reasons why a company would lean towards temporary placements over permanent hires. It may seem more expensive to have a temp, but the math will often make more sense to an organization. Some of the reasons include:

      - Temp employees fill the gaps while companies mull over their hiring needs
      - Companies have ideal staffing levels without the commitment of permanent employees
      - Temp employees may not require paid vacation days, workers' compensation, or health insurance
      - A staffing agency handles payroll, truancy, and other matters, saving a lot of time
      - When a temp employee does well, you can hire them down the road, after they have proven themselves through excellent performance!

      Discuss with the interviewer the reasons why you believe your clients prefer temp hires over permanent employees. What is the reasoning your clients use when putting in a job order with you?

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Experience

    14. In which industry are you best versed, when it comes to temporary staffing needs?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know which industries you are most comfortable working within. You should know, before your interview, if this staffing agency or company focus' on one particular area of staffing, or if they are a generalist firm. Some of the most common areas for temporary staffing needs include:

      - Trades, Construction, Machine Operations
      - Industrial & Warehousing
      -Information Technology & Computer Science
      - Administration & Accounting

      There are significant temporary staffing needs in seasonal construction positions; maternity or paternity coverage, vacation time coverage, sabbaticals, or any work that requires a brief uptick in a company's workforce. Some accounting firms will hire accountants on a temporary basis, to help with tax season or to assist through an audit. Some warehouses will have peak seasons, for instance, if they are a 3PL for a retail chain that may have additional stock and merchandise needs around Christmas or Halloween (decorations and candy need to be warehoused and moved at rapid rates!). Discuss where your expertise is, within temporary staffing, but be sure to express your ability to make placements in any industry.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Job Satisfaction

    15. What could your current employer do for you that would have prevented you from looking for a job?

      How to Answer

      A hiring authority at a recruitment firm will always dig deep to understand your motivation for seeking a new role. After all, staffing and hiring is their forte! Be prepared for challenging questions that will require a thoughtful response. If you regurgitate the same old 'work-life balance' nonsense that most job seekers offer up, you will likely lose to the competition.

      There is a multitude of reasons why an employee would want to leave their current job, and the interviewer wants to know that they will not be the next place of employment that you quit. Can they meet your expectations? Talk to the interviewer about your reasons for moving on and what could have prevented you from starting your employment search. Be sure to avoid speaking negatively about your current employer.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Job Satisfaction

    16. How do you like to be recognized for your accomplishments?

      How to Answer

      As a temporary staffing recruiter, there are many targets and goals to hit on a regular basis. It's a busy and fast-paced career choice, with a lot of wins along the way. The interviewer would like to know what motivates you to be an over-achiever in the workplace. We all want recognition in some way for our accomplishments in the workplace. Perhaps you enjoy surprise gifts, financial perks, public attention, kind words, added responsibilities, or title promotions. Share with the interviewer how you would like recognition for your hard work.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Performance

    17. Name one thing you could improve in your process, as a Temporary Recruiter.

      How to Answer

      This question is another way of asking what your weaknesses are as a recruiter. You will want to discuss an area where you could use further clarification or training, without bringing up a point that would be detrimental to your candidacy. For instance, a recruiter should never say that they could work on their desire to make phone calls. Why? Because a temp recruiter spends most of their day 'smiling and dialing!' Discuss an area where you could improve your performance, and also respond with a solution to that weakness.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Performance

    18. How is your recruitment performance measured in your current role?

      How to Answer

      Recruitment is a competitive industry, and your role as a temp recruiter is similar to that of a sales professional. Some of your performance metrics will include the number of placements you make, how quickly you fill a job order, your business development activity (gaining new clients or asking for more job orders), your temp-to-hire ratio, and total temp hours billed. Discuss with the interviewer the ways that your performance is measured, and discuss how you stack up compared to others on your team.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Performance

    19. What is your current temp-to-hire ratio?

      How to Answer

      Temp-to-hire, or often called contract-to-hire, is when a company takes on a temp employee to perform a role for about 3-6 months. If the temporary employee does well, the company will then make an offer of full-time employment. Often, in these cases, the staffing agency will credit the commission on hours billed and apply those funds spent, to the hiring company's final invoice. There is minimal risk for the employer when they hire this way.

      Recruiters are often measured on their performance when it comes to their temp-to-hire ratio. The higher this number, the better they are matching employers with valuable candidates. Think of this as a 'successful match rate.' Tell the interviewer if you measure this metric in your current role, and why you believe your numbers rank how they do.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Performance

    20. Which technology and tools you do lean on most often during your day?

      How to Answer

      Recruiters have a plethora of tools at their disposal, and the interviewer would like to know which ones you take advantage of on a daily basis. Some of the most common tech and tools used by a temp recruiter include:

      - Candidate relationship management software such as SmartRecruiters
      - Headhunting tools like LinkedIn Navigator
      - Premium subscriptions to job seeker boards such as Indeed
      - Applicant tracking systems such as Bullhorn or Zoho

      Speak about the technology and tools that you use most often. If the tools used by the hiring company are mention in their job description, be sure to bring up your experience with those!

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Problem Solving

    21. When have you had to shift your priorities in response to sudden changes?

      How to Answer

      A great temporary staffing recruiter knows how to pivot from one task to the other, reacting well to sudden changes and urgent client needs. The interviewer would like to see how you handle those sudden shifts in priorities. Do you become uber-focused on the task at hand, or are you willing to drop what you are doing, and switch your focus? Discuss a time when you have been asked to change your priorities on a dime.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Problem Solving

    22. When a problem requires a quick solution, how do you respond?

      How to Answer

      When it comes to complex problem solving, decisions are not always readily reached. It takes practice, experience, and confidence to learn what sorts of decisions yield the best results. Walk the interviewer through your process when it comes to making quick decisions. Do you rely on past experiences? Perhaps you go with a gut feeling. Maybe you have read case studies that you lean on in these instances.

      Problems that require you to act quickly can be emergencies where a temp does not show up to work, and your client is angry. Going with your gut is a skill, and the more you learn to trust your intuition, the easier it becomes to make these types of decisions. Demonstrate that you are confident and able to react swiftly when the need arises.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Salary

    23. Are you comfortable being paid on a 100% commission basis?

      How to Answer

      Many recruiters work on a 100% commission basis; however, not all of them. It's vital that you fully understand the pay structure offered by the recruitment firm, before accepting any job offer.

      The interviewer would like to know if you are happy with being paid solely on your performance. Whether the job pays 100% commission or not, may not be the point of this question. Assure the interviewer that you are confident in your ability to be a top performer, regardless of commissions or a comfy base salary. Are you able to work hard and be paid based on your performance alone?

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Scenario Based

    24. Tell me about a time when you had to make a decision without all the information you needed.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to hear more about your decision making and critical thinking skills. Many times, a client will call you with a new job order, without giving you all the details you feel you need. Maybe you take the job order but then realize that you forgot to ask how long the assignment will run for, or you didn't gain clarification on the tech skills the employer would prefer to see.

      Keep your answer career based and discuss a decision you made where you may not have had all of the pertinent information. The interviewer would like to see that you can use logic to make a sound decision. Show the interviewer that you are capable and confident when it comes to independent thinking and decision making. Be sure to include the success you saw in your sound decision making.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Scenario Based

    25. Tell me about a time when you were unsuccessful in filling a job order. How did you handle the situation?

      How to Answer

      Temp recruiters work with tight deadlines, important client needs, unreliable candidates (at times!), and a variety of circumstances out of their control. In this high-pressure, fast-paced environment, the interviewer wants to know how you react when failures occur or you fall short. Nobody is perfect. Show the interviewer that you get back up and try again, never giving up in the face of perceived failure. The best temp recruiters have grit, and the interviewer wants to see that this is a characteristic you possess.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Scenario Based

    26. What would you do if a client asked something unethical of you?

      How to Answer

      Sometimes your clients may not know about human resource laws, and will unintentionally (or intentionally) cross the line when it comes to hiring and employment ethics.

      Most often, as a temporary staffing recruiter, you will come across clients who cross the line when it comes to gender, age, race, and other equal employment rights.

      You may hear a client unintentionally say 'she' when they refer to the type of front-desk receptionist they need for vacation coverage. Or, more blatant, you may hear a client say 'we can't hire anyone over 40 for this job.' Discuss what you would do if faced with this situation. Of course, the only right answer is that you will politely refuse, and kindly educate your client on how to best work with you and your agency.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Stress

    27. Temporary staffing can be highly frustrating at times. How do you cope with the fact that you are always putting out fires?

      How to Answer

      Temporary staffing recruiters are always solving problems, and often these issues occur with no warning. Experience shows that temporary employees are not as reliable as professionals who seek permanent opportunities; however, this can also vary from industry to industry.

      Many temps are university students who need the flexibility of choosing when they work. Others are people with a criminal background who cannot as easily land jobs through traditional hiring avenues. Many temporary employees are new immigrants who have yet to thoroughly learn the ropes when it comes to employment in their new country.

      Discuss with the interviewer how you cope with working in a highly reactive job, where anything can happen in a day.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Stress

    28. What do you believe to be the most significant change in recruitment this year?

      How to Answer

      Recruitment is a fast-paced, ever-changing industry. Your approach will need to change with economic ebbs and flows, workforce legislation, and other trends related to human resources. Show the interviewer that you remain up to date on trends and changes in the recruitment world. Name the resources you utilize for your news and updates. If you would like the interview to have a more conversational tone, feel free to ask the interviewer what they think will be a significant change affecting their industry, this year.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Teamwork

    29. Do you like being around people?

      How to Answer

      If you are interviewing with a very busy and successful agency, you will be talking to dozens of temp job candidates every day. This high level of people-based activity is why a temporary staffing recruiter needs to like people and can converse with people of all personality types and backgrounds. Share the kinds of people or situations that you enjoy. It's essential to maintain a positive angle when addressing this question.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view

  • Teamwork

    30. When was the last time you contributed to a team effort and what was your role?

      How to Answer

      Sometimes a very last minute job order will come in, and you will have to collaborate with your teammates to fill the position in time. The interviewer would like further details on what you consider to be a substantial contribution when you are in a team setting.

      Your example can come from a previous role or your current one. You can also draw on experience from your high school or post-secondary education if you are newer to your career. Volunteer experience is a great situation to bring an example from as well. Give the interviewer an idea of what you did to contribute, and be sure to mention any accolades you may have received for your excellent contribution.

      Written by Rachelle Enns on February 6th, 2021

      Answer Examples Have Been Hidden

      Please upgrade to view