Recruiting Revealed: Understanding the Role of Recruiters

If you’ve never worked in Human Resources or on a recruiting team, it’s likely that the hiring process and the role of recruiters is shrouded in a bit of mystery.

You’ve probably wondered: How do recruiting agencies work? How is an agency different from a recruiter within a company? And are there best practices you should keep in mind when working with recruiters? We’re here to shed some light on the world of recruiting so that you can feel more confident during your job search and land a great new role!

For starters, it’s important to understand that there are many different types of recruiters; all with different approaches, goals, and motivators. Familiarizing yourself with the differences between these roles will help you leverage your relationships with recruiters and align your goals with theirs. Below, we’ll explore two distinct types of recruiters: agency recruiters and in-house recruiters.

Agency Recruiters

Recruiting agencies are hired by companies to help them fill their open jobs. Agencies may be tasked with filling short-term, contract roles or permanent, full-time roles. The agency landscape is highly competitive (there are over 20,000 agencies in the U.S. alone!) and recruiter salaries tend to be based heavily on commissions. As a result, the volume and speed of placements is of utmost importance in the agency environment. You may notice that agency recruiters will have a more aggressive close than their in-house counterparts. That’s because their sole responsibility (and their path to getting paid!) is to successfully make hires for their clients. Agency recruiters are judged on a variety of metrics, such as time-to-hire, cost-per-hire, and quality-of-hire. But what really sets an agency recruiter apart from the pack is their ability to build and nurture candidate relationships. The more relationships a recruiter has, the faster they will be able to find qualified candidates for a job opening.

In-House Recruiters

In-house recruiters are just what they sound like: individuals who work internally at a company handling the hiring needs of the organization. Depending on the size of the company, there may only be one in-house recruiter on staff who also splits their time as the person responsible for Human Resources (HR). As companies get larger, you’ll find multiple recruiters on staff. Typically, those teams work within the broader HR department. As a result, and unlike their agency counterparts, you’ll often see in-house recruiters equally invested in the processes that come after hiring, such as on-boarding, retention of talent, and referral programs. In-house recruiters don’t have to fight for business and candidate placements the same way that agency recruiters do, but they have to balance a lot of internal company resources and stakeholders. They must always keep the bigger picture of company priorities, growth, and budget in mind.

While there are many differences between in-house and agency recruiters, it’s important to remember that they both share the same end goal: making the best candidate placements possible.

Interested in diving deeper? Join us on Friday, December 8 for “Recruiting Revealed: Understanding the Role of Recruiters." We’ll explore the difference between recruiter roles in more detail and look into what motivates recruiters, how to align your goals with theirs, and how best to negotiate with them.


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