ABC’s of Hiring #13: Why Use a Recruiter?

Professional recruiters know their markets better than anyone. Savvy executives learned long ago that working with a recruiter is a strategic investment and a value-added expense. Some hiring managers are well networked, have established management development programs and enjoy high retention of top talent. Most do not and need the help of a professional recruiter to find the best people for their company. There are multiple factors to consider when deciding to use a recruiter.

Cost and Speed

Using a recruiter saves you time and money. Hiring managers have even less time when they cover for open positions. Oftentimes, they compromise their selection because they don’t have time to find the perfect fit.

  • What does a key opening that goes unfilled cost the company?
  • What is your collective management time worth?
  • What does a bad “fit” cost?
  • What does it cost to do it all again months later after a bad hire?
  • What about the salaries, benefits and the overhead of internal recruiting staffs?
  • How many resumes do your resources have to go through to find one or two good ones?
  • Without industry experience, what is the cost of training and onboarding?

These are real costs in hard-earned dollars. Recruiters can devote full time to your search and surface qualified and interested candidates relatively quickly.

Casting a Wider Net

Professional recruiters have an extensive database and network of contacts with industry-specific experience. They keep track of talent and know where to find it. They focus on talent that will never be accessed by newspaper ads, alumni associations, internet postings, trade associations, applicant databases or employee referral systems. Recruiters know your competitors, frequently talk to them and have easy access to them. They track talent that leaves the industry that may be interested in returning for the right position. They are able to penetrate market segments in great depth. They can access the passive candidate who is not looking for a job because they are busy working very hard for their current employer. These are the candidates who will consider a better opportunity with a better company when presented to them. Passive candidates’ resumes are not posted on any internet sites. They are not responding to your ads or postings even on LinkedIn.


Whenever an incumbent is involved, it makes sense to use a third party. Whenever any position is posted, current employees experience anxiety and apprehension, wondering why they weren’t considered or whether the new person will create problems for them. Going public also can alert your competitors to a current weakness or void in your company. Recruiters live in a world of confidentiality all the time and can contact potential candidates without disclosing who the client is.

Unbiased Third Party Input and Reality Check

Recruiters don’t try to fit square pegs in round holes. They are concerned with finding the right match for the opening. They understand the dynamics of the company and what problems need to be solved by the new employee. Their integrity and reputation hang in the balance. Most recruiters have unbiased views of candidates. Their job is to “see” what the hiring manager sees and to provide candidates that fit that vision and culture. Internal resources tend to be less objective, injecting their own biases and requirements beyond that of the hiring manager.

Sometimes, a company needs to hear from a third party about how they are perceived in the marketplace and what is required to land the right person. Oftentimes, it is about competitive compensation; other times, it is about the organizational structure or the commitment to change that the company will have to support. A good recruiter provides the company with what they need which may be slightly different than what they asked for.


As a third party intermediary, a recruiter can help balance the needs of both parties and avoid hard feelings or issues with a face-to-face negotiation. Recruiters always find out what is motivating the candidate to make the move which is crucial to closing the deal. When a candidate surfaces a need after the offer is made, clients can become frustrated with post –deal surprises. A recruiter can ferret out any issues beforehand and avoid problems with closing the deal, creating a win-win for the company and candidate without any ego bruising for either party.


Recruiters know your marketplace and your competition. They know where the talent is and can access it quickly, saving you time and money. They are experts in representing your company and negotiating mutually acceptable deals. They are strategic problem-solving consultants in the human capital marketplace.

Outsource your recruiting efforts:

  1. To save money.
  2. To save time.
  3. To optimize your talent acquisitions for the long term.
  4. To access industry-specific skills and experience.
  5. To access the passive and “hidden” talent pool.
  6. To find quality candidates quickly.
  7. To allow your managers to do what they do best and not dilute their efforts recruiting.
  8. To overcome internal biases and maintain confidentiality.
  9. To find the “truly exceptional” rather than the “readily available” candidate.
  10. To assess your competition and the talent pool available in your market niche.


Bob Harrington Associates has been in the executive search business for 20 years and can help you find the best people for your business.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s