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Hattie Hynes is a Recruiting/HR Marketing Intern with Milliner & Associates. She will graduate from the Indiana University Kelley School of Business in 2018.

This summer, I was surrounded by the staffing industry through my internship with Milliner & Associates (a staffing firm, go figure). Prior to my internship, I didn’t even know staffing firms existed. I sort of knew what temporary workers were (mostly just from watching Ryan on “The Office”), but had no clue how they got there or that they were employed by a third-party agency. For those of you who may not know, a staffing firm forms relationships with area businesses and when the business has a personnel need, they call a staffing firm and they (hopefully) find or already have a job seeker who fits what they’re looking for.

There are many different paths you can take in the Human Resources world (recruiting, employee engagement, training & development, health & benefits, to name a few), so it’s already overwhelming for someone who’s graduating college with a degree in Human Resources. But still, lots of students don’t realize that there’s a whole other path you can take: staffing.

A staffing recruiter could have a fantastic interview with a stellar candidate and get back to their desk to find that one of your employees isn’t performing well. A client could ask for five new candidates by the end of the day, and you have to deal with all these things before 5:00 p.m. If you want a job where you have to be flexible to other people’s needs and it’s very easy for them to dictate how your day goes, you should be a staffing recruiter.

Our clients don’t appear out of nowhere. Recruiters need to be able to effectively market themselves to get new business and foster the relationships with existing clients in order to continue to have jobs to fill. That means selling yourself and your company. If you want to be a salesperson half the time, you should be a staffing recruiter.

Now, it may sound like I’m not a huge fan of staffing recruiting… and you might be right. But, that’s only because of the personality that I have. I’m quiet, I like consistency, and I like to do my work without a whole lot of fuss. HOWEVER, there are TONS of people out there who are staffing recruiters who absolutely love what they do. They like rapid change and are incredibly good at managing their time… it comes naturally to them. They enjoy the fast pace and love how they can quickly make matches between clients and candidates. They’re extroverts and love meeting new people, but can still get stuff done. If you’re a person who loves to work fast and go from 0 to 60 mph in a heartbeat, you’ll love staffing recruiting!

Now, you may read this and think that I’m bitter, or that I feel that I wasted my summer interning within an industry that I don’t want to work in. That’s not at all the case. I may have learned that I don’t want to be a recruiter, but I also learned that I actually like doing paperwork. Weird, right?

I learned a lot during my internship with Milliner & Associates, here are a few highlights:

  • The different paths of Human Resources that I can take (even with my not-so recruiter-friendly tendencies).
  • The differences between age and gender within the workplace.
  • Unemployment claims and background checks
  • How to conduct myself professionally while still being myself.
  • Networking is one of the most important things you can do for your career and that the interviewee is really in charge of the way the interview goes.

I met many Indianapolis business leaders, and spent a lot of time with an amazing mentor. I even made a true friend or two from work who I trust to help me with my career. My internship has been invaluable to me. To think back to when I started in January, my level of comfort in the professional world has comes leaps and bounds, and my knowledge of all things HR has expanded like crazy… and I haven’t even taken a Human Resources class for school yet! Imagine how impressed my professors are going to be!

One major thing I learned is that internships are fantastic and I would advise all students to do at least one, ideally more. Even people who are already in the professional world who are wanting a fresh start in a new role! My point is, internships are a great way to learn and I’ve been blessed to have had the experience that I did. I believe it will catapult me to the next step of my career, wherever that may be.

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