Reading List

What Makes a Good Buyside Recruitment Consultant


Elliott James Consulting currently have ambitious expansion plans in place for Q1 and Q2 in 2021. Many of the hedge fund and asset management firms that we recruit for have given us strong growth plans on the back of vaccines being announced and lower lockdown conditions therefore on the back of this EJC are hiring consultants at all levels to join the team and to help us drive the business to the next level and make sure we are fully in a position to assist our client base.

Being specialist buyside recruiters we find that our chose sector to be sometimes very technically demanding, as financial services is an expansive business sector with a multitude of products and strategies for our consultants to understand. At Elliott James Consulting we have therefore have specialist recruiters who purely focus on one particular strategy or job focus. For example Hannah Davey specialises in Distribution across some of London’s leading buyside houses and at any one time has a strong rolodex of excellent hedge funds she is working with and some incredible candidates she is hoping to secure the next role for.  It makes sense for each of our consultants to “own” a specialist channel and become the go to expert in their chosen field
To find consultant who are capable of the above, the question is “what does a buyside recruitment specialist look for in terms of potential recruits”?

1. Intelligence

Whilst its def not necessary to have PHD in Mathematics or Economics to work in recruitment that’s for sure, it is important to have the ability to speak to senior investment professionals and understand their requirements. A certain level of grey matter is needed that’s for sure to understand some of the complex strategies in play and then to have the ability to convert this information into positive recruitment action by sending appropriate CVs.  The quickest way to lose confidence in a client or candidate alike is to point roles / candidates who are not right for their requirements. The phrase “less is more” is something that all consultants should follow on occasions as clients don’t want inboxes full of material which are not relevant. We also find that our most successful consultants have a genuine interest in the markets which manifests itself in the quality of work they produce. We don’t expect our recruiters to be MENSA IQ candidates that’s for sure, however a strong sprinkling of common sense and desire to learn are certainly useful.

2. Thick Skin

This is an essential attribute that all successful recruiters need to have.  Being the broker in the recruitment process means we have two variables at play, these being the client and candidate, both of whom have the ability not to like each other, pull out from the process, be late for an interview, not wearing suitable attire for an interview, delays on the Northern Line etc etc etc, the list goes on.  A successful recruiter learns to never bank on a placement taking place and would always try and have contingency plans.

3. Communication Skills

Another key attribute in any people focussed role. Recruiters invariably spend a lot of their time on the phone to clients and candidates and therefore the ability to orate clearly and concisely is so important. Clients don’t want to hear waffle, they want to hear that the person on the phone is credible, has an understanding of what they do and what they seek and has the ability to deliver. A recruiters goal is to make sure that they work for a client or candidate as their “sole recruiter” this meaning that the hedge fund or candidate looking for a specific role in the hedge fund has complete faith in that recruiter being able to deliver. The ability to communicate clearly is one of the key stones in securing this.

4. Attitude

If you don’t have the right attitude then recruitment is certainly not the job for you. We touched on some of the highs and lows above, however to say recruitment is a roller coaster of epic proportions would be an understatement. There are so many variables in play that even the most experienced and meticulous of consultants can still be hit by curve balls which can impede on their recruitment process. The ability to bounce back from set backs is key however sometimes just as important is the ability to continue to strive for success and not rest on your laurels. The right attitude in recruitment manifests itself in many different ways, things like being on time for work, replying to your emails from clients and candidates and colleagues, being a good team player.

5. Understanding Equal Opportunities and Diversity

This is a lynchpin of Elliott James Consulting and how we operate as a professional city recruitment house. We fully embrace equal opportunities and diversity in the workplace and make sure our recruitment practices reflect this in our approach to our candidates and clients alike. We expect any new hires who join EJC understand the important of this and are educated.

The above are just a few glimpses into what makes a good consultant, the list would also include things like confidence, listening skills, patience, honesty, integrity, time management skills, multi-tasking skills, sales ability, marketing skills etc etc.

Recruitment in asset management and hedge funds is not rocket science, it’s a competitive sector with many firms operating in this field, however if someone comes on board to Elliott James Consulting and embraces many of the above attributes they would surely see great success.

If you are interested in discussing roles working in the fast paced world of financial services recruitment then please reach out to us on for a confidential conversation. operate as a buyside recruitment specialist covering London and European financial services houses ranging from top tier global asset management firms through to start up hedge funds who are just launching.