For some reason, things always sound easier in the real estate industry than they really are. The same holds true with the recruiting of new agents. Or should I say, the art of recruiting. At the surface it sounds simple, but once you get started, you quickly realize it's a rather complex task to undertake and it is not something you can take lightly. Recruiting new agents is a great way to expand your firm and in return, expand your profits. As the founder of a company that has developed software which recruited over 8,000 agents in the past 3 years, I have learned a number of best practices to apply in order to achieve success in recruiting.
Below are eight top tips you need to follow if you want to start bringing in quality agents to your brokerage.
1. Cast a wide net
94 percent of active REALTORS® began their careers in another industry. Bottom line: the best agents of tomorrow could be working at your local Costco or Cheesecake Factory. The first rule of agent recruiting is that everyone is a potential recruit.
2. Forget the whales
Most recruiting directors waste way too much time trying to woo top producing agents from other brokerages and not nearly enough time building a system for generating new agent leads—the future of the business. Top sports franchises have known this for years—draft picks are more valuable than high-priced free agents. Let other brokerages overspend on top producing agents, while you build out your brokerage with the top producers of tomorrow.
3. Make time for part-timers
A lot of brokers scoff at part-time agents. Ironically, many of these same brokers started in the industry as part-time agents. Part-time agents eventually convert into full-time agents, and in the interim they take up fewer in-office resources. Plus, an agent with a second job is less likely to leave the company quickly due to a couple bad months in real estate.
4. Build a frictionless online lead experience
The quickest way to generate a high volume of leads is online. Job boards like Monster, Careerbuilder, and Indeed can be excellent sources of new agent leads. The key here is to make it super simple for leads to pass information through to you. Don’t complicate the process by asking for information you don’t need or providing information they don’t need. Are they interested? What’s their name, email address, and phone number? That’s it. Leave the surveys, personality profiles, and mission statements for later on in the process.
5. Promote the lifestyle
For most new agent recruits, the number one selling point of a career in real estate is the freedom it affords. We find time and time again that emphasizing no set schedule, no bosses, and no mandatory meetings attracts recruits much more quickly than talking about income potential.
6. Master the career night
When you start generating leads at scale, career nights are essential. A career night allows you to invite all of your potential recruits to a single event at your office, instead of holding dozens of individual interviews. You can provide basic information about your company, answer pertinent questions, and schedule follow up interviews and tasks with serious candidates.
7. Partner with local real estate schools
A lot of your best potential recruits will be unlicensed. Not a problem. Getting a real estate license is easier than getting a driver’s license, but it’s important to guide your recruits through this process, so they end up at your brokerage as soon as they’re licensed. Better yet, partner with a local school and offer to send them a steady stream of customers if they send top-notch graduates your way. It’s a perfect symbiotic relationship.
8. Know your audience
Most experienced agents make their brokerage decision based on commission splits and perks (like office space and parking spots). Most newer agents make their brokerage decision based on training, mentoring, and technology options. Adjust your pitch accordingly.
If you follow these eight tips, I can't promise you will begin recruiting top talent overnight, but I can promise you it will greatly improve your current results. It's important to understand that everyone has their own style and it's important to develop your own. Every firm has their own strategy, culture, and strengths. If you focus on the core of your company and apply these best practices, you will develop a custom recruiting strategy just for your brokerage which is bound to deliver an endless supply of top quality agents to your firm.
Casey Wright is Founder, Owner and Chief Executive Officer at Wright Brothers, Inc.(WBI), a web development company that builds rapidly evolving web applications for the residential real estate industry. With almost a decade of experience equipping small business leaders with digital marketing tools and education, Casey is passionate about leading a new generation of technologically-empowered professionals. Under his direction, WBI has more than doubled its revenues for three consecutive years, earning the title of “4th Fastest Growing Privately Held Company in San Diego” from The San Diego Business Journal in 2014.