Are Recruiters on Your Side? |

By Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter

Recruiters can be very persuasive but are they on your side?

The Connector’s Advantage

‘Are recruiters on your side,’ is the question for today. There are three parties to a transaction– you, the corporation, as represented by a recruiter and hiring manager, a third party recruiter. So let me deal with each of the recruiters on this.

Now, you’re posturing for advantage; you’re representing yourself to the best of your abilities. And you may not be as good as you claimed to be, right?You may be exaggerating what you’re capable of. As a result, you’re posturing. Corporate recruiters are sharing information that may or may not be accurate. Why do I say it may not be accurate? Because they’re posturing for their firm, advocating for their hiring manager, they don’t really know. They don’t work in the department, do they? As a result they’re posturing, too.

And the third party recruiter, the good ones are only the messengers of the posturing. They don’t add anything new into the equation that makes anyone question whether they’re being honest.

Now, third party recruiters are paid by corporations to find people with specific backgrounds who that firm will hire and work there for a period of time that they guarantee. If they hire you, and you don’t meet that guarantee, they don’t earn their money. So the question is, are recruiters on your side? Ultimately, they’re on their side. And part of that is matchmaking between the two. And since the firm is paying them, and they’re hoping to have a longer relationship with them than with you, they’re going to tend to push you a little bit more than they’re going to push the corporation. Most of the time . . .  there are exceptional situations where they’ll advocate for you, of course, because again, they’re trying to do the deal.

But they can’t make a company do anything that they’re not willing to do. They can make a persuasive case and the firm can fold its arms and go ‘No.’ On the other side, the firm is going to say, ‘look, the offer is going to be at this number. Make that person say ‘Yes,’ so we’ve got someone else.’

Are they on your side on this? No, they’re on the company’s side, because they want to get paid, just like you want to get paid. So no, they’re not on your side. They’re on their side. They’re on the side of the people who pay them. And they advocate in both directions in order to earn the fees that are going to allow them to get paid.

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Jeff Altman, The Big Game HunterJeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years. His work involves career coaching, as well as executive job search coaching, job coaching, and interview coaching. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with over 2300 episodes.

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