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The Role of a Recruitment Firm

The role of the hiring company is simple….they have a need that requires a qualified person and they post a position or exert in-house efforts in hope of attracting a profile candidate…but what about the role of the recruiter? What should we know about this specialist?

Generally, a recruitment firm takes on the challenge of a hiring company's need (either via contingency or retained search) when the hiring firm has exhausted all avenues to surface appropriate candidates through traditional means (advertising, in-house recruitment, etc.). Using resources and contacts, recruitment firms perform the valuable service of identifying potential candidates and arranging mutual discussion.

To that end, we wish to add flesh out a more definitive explanation of their import:

A) A recruitment firm acts on behalf of a hiring company, through the development of a position description. By definition, recruitment firms generally do not make a concerted effort to find applicants a job; their purpose is to satisfy a hiring company's needs. At times they may market an extremely valuable person to alert client companies of their availability.

B) Respected recruitment firms do not charge the candidate a fee for candidate placement. Search fees are paid by hiring companies and should have no bearing on ultimate candidate choice or compensation offered. Search fees are a cost of doing business and represent an investment in the hired person relative to the import of the position.

C) The recruitment firm and hiring company agree on a viable candidate profile. This set of skills is used as the template for search. After a telephonic or face-to-face interview, responsible recruitment firms will tell the applicant that they either do or do not match the skills sought, so as not to waste the valuable time of both applicant and company.

D) A recruitment firm's initiative is to create a true win-win situation. The talking points may include, but are not limited to: compensation, responsibilities, location and future career expectations.

E) All recruitment firms should be able to guarantee some form of confidentiality to the candidate and be specific with regard to who the information will be shared. Conversely, the hiring company should be morally in-sync with a candidate's desire for confidentiality.

F) A verbal offer is just that and should be verified in writing by the hiring company before a final decision is made.

Many "guarded (shows a company weakness to the competition or insureds)" or executive positions become search-oriented domain. It's important that hiring companies, their hiring authorities and potential candidates create longstanding relationships with recruitment firms that understand your market, your company and your skills.


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