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Pareto Law Recruitment Agency

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    Hi everyone

    Today I had a phone call and a telephone interview from a graduate recruitment agency called "Pareto Law", apparently they specialists in recruiting graduates for sales positions...
    After a successful telephone interview I was asked to come to an assessment center which I accepted. Now... that's when my questions start

    Have any of you heard of this recruitment agency and if you have what are your views and experiences.
    I have read some very interesting reviews from people who attended and received employment but majority of them are hideously outraged with the company and its services.

    Anyone experienced or have heard anything about them?
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    Hi, I've had a call from them today and just like you read all the net reviews so am sceptical. Did you go on the assessment day in the end? I'd love to hear back from you if you did.
    Thanks
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    (Original post by Parcae)
    Hi everyone

    Today I had a phone call and a telephone interview from a graduate recruitment agency called "Pareto Law", apparently they specialists in recruiting graduates for sales positions...
    After a successful telephone interview I was asked to come to an assessment center which I accepted. Now... that's when my questions start

    Have any of you heard of this recruitment agency and if you have what are your views and experiences.
    I have read some very interesting reviews from people who attended and received employment but majority of them are hideously outraged with the company and its services.

    Anyone experienced or have heard anything about them?
    I went to an assessment day in 2009. Things might have changed since then.

    It was a fairly typical assessment centre. They are observing you from the moment you walk through the front door. They had someone with a clipboard recording notes even at the stage where you first walked in and shook hands with the greeter (presumed they were making notes on how well you presented yourself). There was an icebreaker (stand up and talk about your proudest accomplishment), then a couple of group tasks and a 2 minute presentation in front of an employee.

    They are very big on looking/acting the part of a sales professional. So dress smartly, be confident, assertive but not overbearing, talk up as much as you can whenever you have something intelligent to say.

    I wasn't successful (and thankfully so, as I realise now Sales is not my natural environment) but the feedback they gave was very detailed. I was quite impressed with the high quality of the feedback, which came in useful for subsequent interviews.
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    (Original post by Parcae)
    Hi everyone

    Today I had a phone call and a telephone interview from a graduate recruitment agency called "Pareto Law", apparently they specialists in recruiting graduates for sales positions...
    After a successful telephone interview I was asked to come to an assessment center which I accepted. Now... that's when my questions start

    Have any of you heard of this recruitment agency and if you have what are your views and experiences.
    I have read some very interesting reviews from people who attended and received employment but majority of them are hideously outraged with the company and its services.

    Anyone experienced or have heard anything about them?
    I had the same happen to me.. They were so impressed and that was wierd because I never impress anyone!! I was starting to think they were a fraud (seriously I never impress) and I didnt attend the open day because of it. It was all the way in Manchester with one bitchass train ticket, plus I dont think sales was for me. So to that end, If your going, then make sure sales is for you. Otherwise your wasting your time. Have fun
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    Hmmm, interesting, I really wish someone who'd done the assessment day, been successful and had a job with them would reply so we could find out if they follow through with what they're offering....I just don't want to waste my time!
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    More and more of these "all commission" sales jobs are springing up all over the place. There are so many of them now, making a HUGE proportion of the graduate labour force in this country. A LOT of Recruitment Consultant positions springing up, and Door to Door Sales, etc. And the saddest thing is the ridiculously high turnover of staff due to the quite frankly unsustainable working conditions. It's not so much that the job is difficult, it's that the job is not sustainable (even though it's pretty hard). Unless you are extremely good with rejection and can keep your morale high.
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    (Original post by AestheticOverload)
    More and more of these "all commission" sales jobs are springing up all over the place. There are so many of them now, making a HUGE proportion of the graduate labour force in this country. A LOT of Recruitment Consultant positions springing up, and Door to Door Sales, etc. And the saddest thing is the ridiculously high turnover of staff due to the quite frankly unsustainable working conditions. It's not so much that the job is difficult, it's that the job is not sustainable (even though it's pretty hard). Unless you are extremely good with rejection and can keep your morale high.
    Agreed. On Reed.co.uk it's all you see on the graduate jobs section, headhunter this, sales executive that, it's just the same job. They basically do what i do and contact companies and businesses asking for work. When i see a role that sounds good in a particular area, i google the place, eg acccountants in east peckham, and contact them all in that area, hoping to beat the snide recruitment agency at their game.
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    (Original post by AestheticOverload)
    More and more of these "all commission" sales jobs are springing up all over the place. There are so many of them now, making a HUGE proportion of the graduate labour force in this country. A LOT of Recruitment Consultant positions springing up, and Door to Door Sales, etc. And the saddest thing is the ridiculously high turnover of staff due to the quite frankly unsustainable working conditions. It's not so much that the job is difficult, it's that the job is not sustainable (even though it's pretty hard). Unless you are extremely good with rejection and can keep your morale high.
    I agree with this completely...the commission pay only jobs on the market is crazily high. It’s like they are trying to take advantage of desperate graduates looking for work. Pitiful. Although tbf recruitment is not only commission pay (they pay you a basic salary), but it is largely target driven. So if you don’t keep up to a set number of sales, you are screwed.
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    Hi Everyone,

    I thought I'd take the time just to put my 2 cents in. I went to the assessment day at Pareto Law and was successful and have now been placed in a brilliant job.
    My friend who previously went through Pareto themselves suggested I go through them.
    I think people need to take the assessment day with a pinch of salt the whole idea of the day is to see how you work within a variety of situations. The staff I met with were really helpful and prepared me well for the day.
    People saying its a scam are obviously lying as you just have to look at the companies they work with to see that isn't true.

    Once I was successful I was placed 2/3 weeks after my assessment day with company that organize conferences and I am really loving it.

    I feel that the negative reviews are coming from those who are slightly bitter from being unsuccessful on the day. This isn't a detriment to them but shows perhaps sales wasn't the right career choice for them.

    I have nothing but good things to say about Pareto and would recommend the highly if your looking for professional, fast paced and well paid job. (p.s none of the clients they work with offer commission only salary)

    Hope this helps
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    Parcae, thanks for replying! So was the assessment day a Pareto law one or was it for a specific roll/company?

    To be honest I'm considering going along to the assessment day anyway on the basis that I've never done one and would quite like to see what its like..... Worst case scenario I'll have wasted a little money on the train

    A couple more questions:
    1. Should you bring your own lunch then?
    2. Was it evenly split with roughly the same amount of men and women?
    3. Did everyone (grads) look like clones....all men in black trouser suits and women in skirt suits?
    4. If it seems to be heading the same direction as yours did towards the middle of the day would you recommend leaving and just enjoying the day off work instead?
    5. Did the people that were successful seem like they were going to take the job after all that or did you not get a chance to ask?

    Thanks

    Thanks
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    they are training you and then place you in positions when they come up but from my experience more people quit than actually get jobs through pareto

    basically it goes
    apply
    they phone everyone that applies because the callers (graduates) need the training in how to do phone interviews
    they invite those who sound normal on the phone to assessment day (basically every day they do assessment days because again their employees who are graduates need training on how to do them)
    they then offer you a job where you are the person who sifts through applications and call people to do phone interviews and you are rotated into the assessment days too

    pareto works with companies who want good sales people or HR staff who are good at the grunt work of sifting through CVs and telephone interviews. so they recommend their own staff for these positions and they say you are trained and give you a reference.
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    Interesting, I think that's the type of assessment I'll be on, but a friend of a friend said he'd been offered a specific roll in a specific company (still sales though I think...) and that the interviews were at the offices of the company the job was in (i.e. not Pareto, but the people who are using Pareto as a rec agency) so maybe that's better? But then again I suppose you'll end up in that position if you were sucessful at a Pareto assessment day too eventually if what you're saying is right.
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    (Original post by Gemmab1988)
    Parcae, thanks for replying! So was the assessment day a Pareto law one or was it for a specific roll/company?

    To be honest I'm considering going along to the assessment day anyway on the basis that I've never done one and would quite like to see what its like..... Worst case scenario I'll have wasted a little money on the train

    A couple more questions:
    1. Should you bring your own lunch then?
    2. Was it evenly split with roughly the same amount of men and women?
    3. Did everyone (grads) look like clones....all men in black trouser suits and women in skirt suits?
    4. If it seems to be heading the same direction as yours did towards the middle of the day would you recommend leaving and just enjoying the day off work instead?
    5. Did the people that were successful seem like they were going to take the job after all that or did you not get a chance to ask?

    Thanks

    Thanks
    AFAIK, Pareto are a recruitment agency (although they do sometimes take on people who pass through the assessment centre, the majority will be working at other companies). They use the interview and assessment centre as a screening process to get the people they think have potential to sell well for their clients. The vast majority of successful candidates will not end up working at Pareto- they will work for other companies under Pareto's employment (in other words, they will be contract workers).

    You should definitely go to the assessment day just to use it as practice and for the experience if nothing else. You are sure to meet a range of interesting people there. Whether you choose to leave or not is up to you- personally I wouldn't as it comes off as very unprofessional.

    There was a roughly 50/50 split gender wise and everyone was 'cloned'- that's the sales uniform and it's only reasonable to expect candidates to dress professionally.

    Just relax, be yourself, and see what happens. Also don't be disheartened if you are unsuccessful- it doesn't mean you are not suited to a sales career but just not for the sales roles that Pareto recruit for. I was subsequently offered an excellent (salaried) position through another company despite failing the assessment day (my feedback was that I had some strengths but wasn't assertive enough- it seems Pareto are looking for the 'stereotypical' uber-confident, pushy, driven sales type people).
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    This seems a little harsh. Pareto only bring in those with a 2.1 to their assessment days (or at least, they used to) and so everyone has the same baseline academic credentials. When they asked us what our biggest achievements were, they told us not to mention anything academic for the specific reason they are interested in people who can show they have had success in other areas of life. This is not really any different from the majority of graduate recruiters, most of whom are looking for well-rounded people who have additional skills to offer besides academic ability.

    The MD was at our assessment day and I distinctly remember the interest he took in each person's speech about their greatest/proudest achievement. He seemed far more impressed about and approving of the achievements of those who were self-starters and had obtained something without any outside help.

    Cold calling is a big part of most sales jobs and not an easy job to do- you do need to be good with your mouth but that doesn't mean that you can leave your brains at the door. Everyone who goes to an assessment centre has the minimum level of brain function required. They therefore want to find out what else you have to offer.
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    (Original post by Gemmab1988)
    Parcae, thanks for replying! So was the assessment day a Pareto law one or was it for a specific roll/company?

    To be honest I'm considering going along to the assessment day anyway on the basis that I've never done one and would quite like to see what its like..... Worst case scenario I'll have wasted a little money on the train

    A couple more questions:
    1. Should you bring your own lunch then?
    2. Was it evenly split with roughly the same amount of men and women?
    3. Did everyone (grads) look like clones....all men in black trouser suits and women in skirt suits?
    4. If it seems to be heading the same direction as yours did towards the middle of the day would you recommend leaving and just enjoying the day off work instead?
    5. Did the people that were successful seem like they were going to take the job after all that or did you not get a chance to ask?

    Thanks

    Thanks
    The assessment was just to have Parato Law represent you , so although I applied to a specific sales role that was just "advertisement" and they place you as they see fit into small companies. Although they name drop "BT, J&J" you are not necessarily are going to be placed there but rather in small company doing IT sales.
    If you haven't done an assessment day ever then go , have a look and experience whats its like, but keep in mind that majority of assessment days that I went to was nothing like i experienced at Parato.

    Questions:
    1) Lunch, you can but im afraid you either will be asked to put it away or asked to wait until the end. I just had a water on me and that I couldn't drink quickly enough.
    2)There was a 7:24 women:men.
    3) Yes, everyone looked like clones, you are asked to be dressed smartly. The Sales Manager was telling us a story of a candidate which came into the assessment day with a pony tail and was asked to leave.
    4)Since you haven't had any assessment day experience then stay. Either way i would have stayed, its rude to leave and if they are behaving in an unpleasant behavior then doesn't mean that i should do the same. Keep calm.
    5) To be honest with you we were asked to leave very soon and haven't had the chance to see who was successful. But the people that I spoke to that left in two separate groups seem like they will take the job but they had standards.

    I have to address a point on the candidates which I seem like haven't done yet, in many reviews that Ive read they were very negatively addressed. I felt that the people that were there were genuenly looking for a job, and like any of us today are desperate to cling onto something. They were very nice people, i spoke with majority of them and I couldn't fault them.
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    (Original post by standreams)
    This seems a little harsh. Pareto only bring in those with a 2.1 to their assessment days (or at least, they used to) and so everyone has the same baseline academic credentials. When they asked us what our biggest achievements were, they told us not to mention anything academic for the specific reason they are interested in people who can show they have had success in other areas of life. This is not really any different from the majority of graduate recruiters, most of whom are looking for well-rounded people who have additional skills to offer besides academic ability.

    The MD was at our assessment day and I distinctly remember the interest he took in each person's speech about their greatest/proudest achievement. He seemed far more impressed about and approving of the achievements of those who were self-starters and had obtained something without any outside help.

    Cold calling is a big part of most sales jobs and not an easy job to do- you do need to be good with your mouth but that doesn't mean that you can leave your brains at the door. Everyone who goes to an assessment centre has the minimum level of brain function required. They therefore want to find out what else you have to offer.
    Ok, what I have a problem with is the part where they stress that there will be NO cold calling, and that was said to me during the telephone interview. She was categorical that no cold calling will take place and then on the assessment day what do I get " cold calling is essential". Now I dont know about you but it made me feel very stupid as it did majority of people there.
    Dont forget you are dealing with graduates, and Parato specifically deals with graduates, our degrees are our greatest achievements at age of 21 and over. Let me tell you why he took an interest in each person, that is when your personal assessment started, he was examining if you spoke to everyone, maintained eye contact with everyone and if you moved the conversation forward. He wast taking interest in any achievements he was testing you there and then how you reacted to his questions.
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    (Original post by Parcae)
    Ok, what I have a problem with is the part where they stress that there will be NO cold calling, and that was said to me during the telephone interview. She was categorical that no cold calling will take place and then on the assessment day what do I get " cold calling is essential". Now I dont know about you but it made me feel very stupid as it did majority of people there.
    Dont forget you are dealing with graduates, and Parato specifically deals with graduates, our degrees are our greatest achievements at age of 21 and over. Let me tell you why he took an interest in each person, that is when your personal assessment started, he was examining if you spoke to everyone, maintained eye contact with everyone and if you moved the conversation forward. He wast taking interest in any achievements he was testing you there and then how you reacted to his questions.
    You have a legitimate grievance if you were told one thing but the reality was different. Hopefully the woman you spoke to made an error rather than intending to mislead you.

    As for the second part, I would dispute that a degree is necessarily somebody's greatest achievement when they are in their early twenties. Plenty of people have achieved bigger things even at a young age. And even if your degree is your biggest achievement, they specificially say that they want to hear about your greatest non academic achievement. Hopefully you had something to say. They want people who have a life outside of academia and who have other accomplishments to talk about.

    You have misunderstood my point- I have been on enough assessment days to know what assessors are looking for in terms of interpersonal skills. I am telling you that on the day I was there, he was very interested in certain people's achievements. And the common bond between all of those people who merited extra attention was that their achievements were all self-made. For example, one guy told how he had bought and managed his own pub for 4 years and sold it at a profit. The MD looked impressed for a while, but then asked how he had got the money to buy the pub. The candidate replied that his parents had loaned it to him. MD lost interest. Conversely, someone had started up their own much smaller, seemingly less impressive enterprise, but entirely off their own back by working a part-time job and taking out a small business loan. This warranted extra questioning and a note of approval. My own 'achievement' (though seemingly rather minor) resulted in considerable approval (and was mentioned again in my feedback as being very positive)- not because my achievement was particularly impressive but simply because it was unusual and I had achieved it without any help and it required stepping way out of my comfort zone.

    In short, if your achievement was that you got a 1st from Durham or went backpacking for a year in Thailand on your parent's money, they won't be particularly impressed. If you have shown some get-up-and-go in life, they will take notice.
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    (Original post by standreams)
    You have a legitimate grievance if you were told one thing but the reality was different. Hopefully the woman you spoke to made an error rather than intending to mislead you.

    As for the second part, I would dispute that a degree is necessarily somebody's greatest achievement when they are in their early twenties. Plenty of people have achieved bigger things even at a young age. And even if your degree is your biggest achievement, they specificially say that they want to hear about your greatest non academic achievement. Hopefully you had something to say. They want people who have a life outside of academia and who have other accomplishments to talk about.

    You have misunderstood my point- I have been on enough assessment days to know what assessors are looking for in terms of interpersonal skills. I am telling you that on the day I was there, he was very interested in certain people's achievements. And the common bond between all of those people who merited extra attention was that their achievements were all self-made. For example, one guy told how he had bought and managed his own pub for 4 years and sold it at a profit. The MD looked impressed for a while, but then asked how he had got the money to buy the pub. The candidate replied that his parents had loaned it to him. MD lost interest. Conversely, someone had started up their own much smaller, seemingly less impressive enterprise, but entirely off their own back by working a part-time job and taking out a small business loan. This warranted extra questioning and a note of approval. My own 'achievement' (though seemingly rather minor) resulted in considerable approval (and was mentioned again in my feedback as being very positive)- not because my achievement was particularly impressive but simply because it was unusual and I had achieved it without any help and it required stepping way out of my comfort zone.

    In short, if your achievement was that you got a 1st from Durham or went backpacking for a year in Thailand on your parent's money, they won't be particularly impressed. If you have shown some get-up-and-go in life, they will take notice.
    Every employer wants a person with a get up and go attitude but having a degree proves that in itself, you were willing to go to higher education , taking up loans and future financial hits. The very action to better yourself through education reflects your attitude. And with that at the age of 21 (+) in the country where it is hard to get even a temporary job many people may not have the opportunity to reflect their full ability.
    But ok, so far lets go with your point of people having non academic achievements. I agree with that people have to show initiative but I showed alot of initiative to better my university, i was lucky, i stood out, i showed myself to be competitive and my views on restructuring my university was taken on board.
    Very small minority of people got to do what i did but that doesnt mean they dont have potential to do what I did. Non academic achievements are also very subjective and its strength vary with the assessors.
    Lets take the example of the guy owning that pub, parents loaned him the money but he showed initiative to do something about the running of the pub.Money is important and gives you boost but unless you have a good mind to place the money into correct corners of the business to make it profitable.
    See, I recognized that without drive he wouldn't make the business profitable and in my mind he would have stood out, but for MD he didn't, as something was given to him. See how subjective non-academic achievements are?
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    (Original post by Parcae)
    Every employer wants a person with a get up and go attitude but having a degree proves that in itself, you were willing to go to higher education , taking up loans and future financial hits. The very action to better yourself through education reflects your attitude. And with that at the age of 21 (+) in the country where it is hard to get even a temporary job many people may not have the opportunity to reflect their full ability.
    But ok, so far lets go with your point of people having non academic achievements. I agree with that people have to show initiative but I showed alot of initiative to better my university, i was lucky, i stood out, i showed myself to be competitive and my views on restructuring my university was taken on board.
    Very small minority of people got to do what i did but that doesnt mean they dont have potential to do what I did. Non academic achievements are also very subjective and its strength vary with the assessors.
    Lets take the example of the guy owning that pub, parents loaned him the money but he showed initiative to do something about the running of the pub.Money is important and gives you boost but unless you have a good mind to place the money into correct corners of the business to make it profitable.
    See, I recognized that without drive he wouldn't make the business profitable and in my mind he would have stood out, but for MD he didn't, as something was given to him. See how subjective non-academic achievements are?
    Your point here seems to be that 'non academic achievements are subjective.' Well....yes....and....so what??? I don't know how long you have been out of university or looking for employment but you will learn very quickly that the vast majority of employers will assess you primarily on non-academic skills and competencies. Hence why there is so much focus on getting work experience and taking part in extra-curricular activities at university. They ask all candidates to meet a minimum academic standard (usually a 2.1 for graduate jobs), therefore every candidate they see/interview will have this standard, ergo no need to discuss it any further. Unfair/subjective this may be but it is reality and a reality you'll have to face if you want graduate-level employment.

    In light of the fact that 100% of their candidates have at least a 2.1 degree, I think it is entirely logical that Pareto explicitly state "do not talk about your academic achievements." Would you find it particularly productive or an efficient use of time for all 30-40 people in that assessment centre, when asked what their greatest achievement was, to stand up and say 'I got a 2.1/1st from a good university' and then sit back down again? Perhaps ''I got a 2.1 from a good university while raising a young child as a single parent and taking a professional accounting qualification in my spare time'' would spark their interest as it shows additional effort. Similarly, while strictly speaking 'academic' I'm sure they wouldn't object to you telling them how you taught yourself Mandarin and then studied in China for a year by organising your own language exchange or something similar.

    But having a degree in itself is irrelevant beyond the screening stage- they already know you have it, if you didn't have it you wouldn't have passed the screening stage- so why mention it as an achievement?

    It would therefore be unfair to characterise Pareto as not caring about academic credentials- they obviously do care, otherwise they wouldn't ask all their candidates to have at least a 2.1 degree.

    Bottom line: your 2.1 will get you through a screening interview and through the door of the assessment centre. Beyond that stage, it is largely irrelevant- and that is true for most graduate employers.
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    Hi guys...Sorry to dig up a week old thread, but I had a very brief phone conversation with Pareto this morning and they said they would phone me back later today for the formal phone interview. I haven't got the best degree and have been really struggling to find a job since graduating, I was just wondering if anyone had any advice for the telephone interview? I would really like the opportunity to experience the assessment centre even if I don't get selected as this is the first response I've had from any prospective employer and I've been jobhunting since June! Any help at all would be greatly appreciated,

    Regards,
    Billy

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