Top 5 Myths About Headhunters/Recruiters

By Carly-Anne Fairlie, Toronto-based Marketing Recruiter

We’ve all heard horror stories about Headhunters and perhaps you even have a few of your own to share (I know I have!).  But it’s important to note that not all of us are bad.  Not until I became a Headhunter myself did I realize that there are some really great recruiting companies out there.  I’m lucky to be working with some of the best in the biz at a company that prides itself on transparency and integrity.  I can’t speak for every company out there, but without further ado, I will attempt to ease your mind and dispel the Top 5 Myths About Headhunters.

Myth #1: Headhunters/Recruiters are Pimps

We do make money by placing candidates into roles but we are not Pimps.  We will not turn you out on the street or strong-arm you into taking a role that isn’t right for you.  Reputable recruiters certainly won’t put you into any compromising positions.  There are definitely some less than stellar recruiters and recruitment agencies out there, but if you do your due diligence, you should be able to sniff them out fairly easily.  We will not make hollow promises of a perfect role.  We will not submit your resume to anyone without your permission.

Myth #2: Headhunters/Recruiters take a cut of your salary

We are hired and paid by the client.  This fee is ON TOP of what they will pay you in salary.  We are not taking a cut of your pay and it does not mean that you will get a lower salary because a recruiter put you into the role.  That being said, we do go to bat for you and will help in the salary negotiation process.

Myth #3: Headhunters/Recruiters are being replaced by job boards and social networking sites

These are definitely great tools to enhance your personal job search, but not all companies are keen on using a job board or social networking site.  When a company posts a job publicly they are usually inundated with hundreds of irrelevant resumes and it’s painstaking and extremely time-consuming to sift through to find one gem.  There is a fair amount of work that goes into finding the right employees that goes far beyond posting an ad on the internet.  Some companies only use recruiters to do their hiring, so to dismiss recruiters is to potentially miss out on some really great opportunities.  Executive headhunters are looking for the best and the brightest and this includes sourcing out passive candidates (candidates that are not actively searching for a new job) as well.

Myth #4: Headhunters/Recruiters are looking for a job for you so you don’t have to

Recruiters do present you to their clients but we are hired by the client and are working on their behalf to find the right person for their open role.  If you are actively engaged and looking for a job  a recruiter is a great resource – whether for insight and advice or to help with your job search – but they don’t replace you actually doing the work.

Myth #5: Headhunters/Recruiters are not a staffing agency

In an Executive Recruiting Firm here’s how it works.  The client hires us to find a person to fill a contract or permanent role.  We are then tasked to reach out to our network and actively research and recruit candidates that fit the specs.  We then screen, interview and present qualified candidates to the employer and then it is their turn to review and interview the selected people.

So now that I’ve shed some light on these myths, move forward with confidence, but always remember to trust your gut.  If you feel that someone is a little off, or gives you a less then professional vibe, I’d say it’s time to look for a headhunter you can trust.  So give us a call at IQ PARTNERS or submit your resume to us online.  We look forward to working with you!

IQ PARTNERS are Toronto-based recruiters and leaders in executive search with over 20 years experience connecting smart people and great companies. We specialize in mid to senior level recruitment in a variety of sectors including Legal, Financial, Marketing (including Social Media) and more. To view current job opportunities and register with us, visit our Current Job Opportunities page. If you need to hire better, hire less and retain more, visit our Find A Toronto Recruiter page.