Navigating the job market can be a daunting task, particularly if you've not been through the process in a while or are new to the world of work.
Recruitment agencies are often a great way of gaining feedback about your suitability for a role, your skill set and interview technique, without jumping right into the employer ring.
Yet finding a recruiter that will work for you can be just as challenging a task.
So how can you get an agency to help and land yourself that dream job?
Mel Flavell is Managing Director of Frontline Retail Recruitment.
She's spent 17 years recruiting and understands that for potential candidates the process can be frustrating.
"The first thing to look out for is an agency that is listing jobs specifically in the industry or vertical that you work in.
"Look at which agencies appear to have the most specific roles advertised - they are your best starting point."
"Don't register with too many agencies at once, and always follow up with a call after you've applied for something, even if you're unsuccessful."
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From there on, Mel suggests that its reasonable to have fortnightly contact with your recruiter. If your situation changes make sure you let the agency know, it's important to communicate and it's a two way street.
"Honesty is key to a good relationship, for example be open about when you are available for interview, rather than only being available for interview after hours to then have the recruiter set you up for a lunchtime meeting - it gets everything off to a bad start."
While it might sound like a big commitment, a good recruiter working for you can be a great thing for your career.
"We work to present people not CV's to clients. And we usually have long established relationships with employers so if we recommend someone then they will usually follow that advice.
"Agencies can be particularly useful for people looking to change industry, we can pick out transferable skills and advise on the best route to get into the desired field.
"It's important to be realistic though."