Advice for Candidates

As a courtesy to our candidates, Diverse Staffing has compiled some critical advice for candidates from some of the top professionals in the employment industry. Some thoughts as you consider your next career decision:

Headhunters Work for the Client

Headhunters work for the client, not for the candidate. Candidates should expect fair and honest treatment from headhunters, but not inside information on hiring organizations or about other candidates. “The headhunter is a broker, not a guide or coach.” (Moats-Kennedy, “What the Recruiter Won’t Tell You,” Healthcare Executive, Chicago).

Call Before You Need Us

The best time for individuals to contact a recruiter is when they don’t need one. Around 64% of executive level positions in the U.S. are filled through professional recruiters. The majority of corporate chiefs have dealt with headhunters at one time or another during their careers. Potential candidates (that is, every employed person) should remember this in their dealings with recruiters (Sheldon: review of Reynolds “Be Hunted,” Communication World, San Francisco).

The Bottom Line

Employees should also bear in mind the material bottom line when they go to work, and regard their current employer with a degree of instrumentality. At the end of the day, labor is just another economic factor input. A better deal may be out there (The Princeton Report, Princeton Search Group).

Know Who the Top Recruiters Are

Candidates should be aware of the top recruiters in their industry and should ensure that they have a profile that headhunters will notice. “With any new search assignment, recruiters often take a quick personal inventory and identify people who may be perfect for the job they have been hired to fill” (Ransom, “An Insider’s Look at Recruiters and Recruiting,” Physician Executive, Nov/Dec 2003.)
NOTE: Professional candidates can improve their profile proactively by making themselves available to the media, by writing articles in trade journals and through networking.

A Form of Representation

Executive recruiters provide candidates with a form of representation that can provide an advantage when seeking a new job (Neil, “Facing Up to Headhunters,” ABA Journal, Chicago, Aug. 2003). Employers may take prospective hires more seriously if they are represented by a third party. Since clients usually only engage headhunters when they need to fill a vacancy, candidates can be sure that they are being put forward for genuine openings and are not applying for jobs that have already been filled prior to being advertised.

Be Sure You’re a Contender

When seeking a position through a headhunter, candidates should ensure that they have the qualifications and experience specified. “Most search consultants would agree that unless you meet at least 80% of the job specifications, you aren’t a contender” (Tyler, “Hey, You! Look at Me!” Healthcare Financial Management, Nov. 2003).
NOTE: Clients expect recruitment firms to put forward only those candidates that closely match their specific requirements. Experienced headhunters are very adept at screening job seekers.

If this advice for candidates seems a little daunting to you, then contact Diverse Staffing at 317.803.2910 for help on finding your next job. 

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