Video Time: 4 Minutes Action Time: 30 – 60 Minutes
Before we get to the good stuff, let’s give everyone a quick understanding of recruiters and how they differ from one another. Because you are going to start hearing from recruiters, you need to know that there is a difference between Contingency and Retainer Recruiters. It’s probably not something you learned in one of your introductory college courses.
Contingency Recruiters are usually Independent Contractors. They only get paid if they fill the position and usually for a specific time frame and urgency. Often these recruiters have to compete with the client’s internal HR department, advertising, direct applicants, and typically one or more other recruitment companies.
Retained Recruiters are usually working for the company as an employee or they are on retainer meaning they work for a certain amount of time like a year or longer while getting paid upfront to find the right people for the open positions within the company. Usually, companies will do a retained search when looking to fill a senior position or when cheaper options have been exhausted.
Here’s a big difference! Contingency Recruiters are scrappy! They are working fast and furious. They want to get people placed like yesterday because that is how they get paid. Paid by placement. If you don’t fill their needs, you will likely never hear from them again unless they are dog-earing you for another position they are thinking about! If you get ghosted by a Contingency Recruiter, don’t feel bad. It’s not about you! Just think at least it’s not your crush ghosting you.
Conversely, Retained Recruiters take longer, they have more obligation to the company because they are more likely an employee or long-term retained recruiter. They are more about finding the right person for the long haul. If you don’t fill their needs, you will likely hear from them again sometimes years or decades later, especially if they liked you. Usually Retained Recruiters will give you honest feedback so you can do better in the future if you don’t get the job offer.
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