The Disadvantages Of Using A Recruitment Firm

Recruitment firms are an established part of the employment landscape, filling a need for both employers and job seekers. As with anything, though, there are some disadvantages to using a recruitment firm. Whether you are a job seeker or a hiring company, it is important to fully understand what it means to use a recruitment firm and what potential impact it can have.

The disadvantages for job seekers and hiring companies do differ somewhat, though, since each party has a different perspective and purpose for using a professional recruiter.

Disadvantages for the job seeker

For the job seeker, using a professional recruiter can be an exercise in frustration. It can be very difficult to get a recruiter to notice you and respond to your e-mail or telephone calls. You should not take this personally, however, as the recruiter may receive literally hundreds of such contacts each day and there is no way to respond to them all.

Another disadvantage for the job seeker is that the recruiter is paid by and therefore works for the hiring company. Their primary interest is focused on finding qualified candidates for the company’s open position(s) so if you don’t fit the needs perfectly you are not likely to be of importance to the recruiter at that particular time. Of course, if you are noticed by a recruiter and are considered for a position you can expect to be treated with respect, but always remember that the recruiter’s primary allegiance is to the hiring company.

Some job seekers become confused about using recruiting firms because many firms offer services other than traditional recruiting. More and more recruitment firms are expanding their revenue streams by offering career counseling, interview preparation, and resume writing services to job seekers. The job seeker is charged a fee for these services, but is in no way guaranteed consideration for open positions on the recruitment side of the business. Depending on your situation, it may be beneficial to seek out such services, but remember that true candidates for a recruitment position should never have to pay a fee.

In most recruitment firms, only one recruiter is allowed to use your file at any given time. This means that if you are under consideration for one open position and another position comes along that would be a better fit, you will not be considered for the other position. This is why some employment experts suggest you work with two or three recruitment firms at a time.

Disadvantages for the hiring company

One of the biggest disadvantages for the hiring company is the cost of using a professional recruiter. The typical fee for a successful placement runs anywhere from 20% to 30% or more of the new hire’s first year salary. And if the recruiter is hired on a retained basis, the fee is generally paid regardless of whether anybody is actually hired for the position or not.

For many companies, the time it takes to evaluate and select a suitable recruitment firm is a disadvantage. If only one or two positions need to be filled and qualified candidates are easy to find, it is often more cost effective to do the hiring process internally instead of going to an outside recruiter. The cost vs. benefit will vary from company to company, so it is important to consider all options before committing to a professional recruiter.

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