Recruiters Are Misunderstood!

Sharon Hulce Blog, Career Blog, Featured Posts

When you’re not involved in the day-to-day of Executive Search like our team is, it makes sense that many folks still don’t understand how our industry works OR the value that developing a relationship with a search firm can be in transforming a company or a career.

Truth is… recruiters are misunderstood.

Companies hire search firms to fill critical roles that, if left unfilled, will leave a noticeable  void within their organization. A misconception from those not aware of how a search firm works is that it is a role no one desires, therefore a fee must be paid to fill it. It’s the exact opposite. If a company is willing to invest in hiring a search firm, the role is critical and has the opportunity to make a very big impact both in the short and long-term goals of the organization.

Another misconception we hear often is around the fee owed. This is a one-time expense and most companies budget their expense for acquiring talent each year. That cost is not going to change the offer a candidate receives and no, the amount of the fee does NOT come off the top of a person’s job offer. Think about it this way – clients hire us to find the best and brightest for their position. How many top performers would take a pay cut to accept a job they weren’t looking for?

Another misconception involving recruiting is around the position itself. Some candidates believe they can be just as successful on their own. Well, some are… but almost all roles we recruit on result in a promotion/advancement for the placed candidate. Most of the roles we work on are never publicized and quite frankly, most of the successful candidates we place were not looking for a new role to begin with, but the opportunity was one they could not pass up at least investigating. So what search firms offer is the opportunity to hear about something you would never know about if not for the recruiter contacting you. And clients would miss out on some terrific talent if they are not open to hearing about a person who can transform a market sector, a business unit, etc.

Let’s talk brass tacks: we are not headhunters! Most professionals in this industry hate that term. The whole perception that we grab a body to throw into the fire is just crazy. Now, I can’t speak for everyone, because just like every industry, there are good souls and bad souls, but I can speak for those I know best. We are in the business of transforming lives for the better. We will always put an immediate stop to the process if either side is wrong for each other.

Many search firms won’t divulge the company they represent and I agree that would bother me as a candidate. Your career is a highly-confidential value proposition. Being a retained firm allows us the ability to share confidentially who we represent once we confirm your skillset to be a good match. It’s one of the many reasons we work within that business model.

If you ever have concerns, just be open and ask the question that is on the tip of your tongue. A good recruiter should be caring, transparent and value first and foremost what is important to YOU. If you are not feeling this, keep looking. There are lots of great recruiters out there. If we can be that fit for you, give us a call anytime at 920.996.9700 or email us at