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When you are searching for a recruiting firm, ask the following questions to make sure you get the right match for your job search.
- Does the firm specialize in your industry?
- Does the firm specialize in the geographical areas that you are interested in?
- How many recruiters work for the firm?
- How do they go about matching job seekers with companies?
Search firms are paid by the hiring company.
Contingency firms are paid only when a company successfully hires a candidate. Retained firms are paid in increments throughout the employee search process. They sometimes receive a bonus if the new employee stays with the company for a certain amount of time.
It is appropriate to use multiple search firms if you are interested in several industries and geographical areas. Look for firms that specialize in the different areas that you are interested in. If you are concerned about confidentiality, this may not be the best route to go, however, since your information will be spread among many different places.
Some professional recruiters will be able to accurately guess your work preferences because of their experience working with job seekers. A good recruiter will ask you to confirm any guesses instead of going solely off of assumptions about you. Insist that you have a thorough interview with your recruiter to make your career goals clear.
Employment agencies specialize in entry-level positions, temporary employment or staff positions. They can be paid by the job seeker rather than by the company.
Search firms are paid by the company looking for employees. Contingency search firms handle beginning and mid-level management. Retained search firms focus primarily on senior and executive management.
Treat your meeting with the retained search consultant as if it were an interview with a potential employer. Research potential employers, dress professionally and expect to sell your qualifications. By presenting a good image to the consultant, you'll ensure that you have more opportunities to present yourself to employers.
When you meet with an executive recruiter, be prepared to answer a lot of questions about your career goals, your skills, your preferences and your expectations. By learning as much as possible about you, the recruiter will be able to better match you up with appropriate companies.