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Five Good Reasons To Fire Your Recruiter

I write about bringing life to work and bringing work to life. Full bio

I was a Fortune 500 HR SVP for ten million years, but I was an opera singer before I ever heard the term HR. The higher I got in the corporate world, the more operatic the action became. I started writing about the workplace for the Chicago Sun-Times in 1997, but it took me ages to find my own voice. Now I write for the Huffington Post, Business Week, LinkedIn, the Harvard Business Review, the Denver Post and Forbes.com and lead the worldwide Human Workplace movement to reinvent work for people. Stop by and join us: http://www.humanworkplace.com

The first time a recruiter contacts you out of the blue, you feel very special. “Wow!” you think. “I’m in the big leagues now.” Job-seekers forget that recruiters are like real estate agents. They make their money on transactions. Of course they’re going to call you if they think they can place you into a job opening one of their clients has available.

They’re going to make a nice search fee when you accept the offer. The search fee is usually twenty-five percent of your first year’s compensation. That means that if the job offer is $80,000, the recruiter’s fee is twenty thousand bucks.

That doesn’t mean recruiters don’t work hard — they do. Working on straight commission is about the hardest gig there is. Most people go to work knowing they’re going to be paid for their effort. Recruiters working on commission have no such assurance.

They can work for free for months before getting paid. That being said, it’s going to be your behind sitting in the chair and doing the job every day once you accept a job offer. The recruiter will be long gone. You have to do what’s right for you, and sometimes the right answer is to give your recruiter the shove.

Here are five good reasons to fire your recruiter when he or she isn’t representing you appropriately to employers. Whichever recruiter you’re working with has tons of competitors. Just like a real estate agent who isn’t showing your house to its best advantage or isn’t returning your calls, the recruiter has to meet your requirements or go.

Once a recruiter contacts you and tells you that employers may be looking for the talents you  bring, you know that you’re somebody that other recruiters would be happy to work with, too. The recruiter isn’t doing you a favor by representing you to employers, no matter how aggressively he or she tries to get you to believe s/he is.

You get to pick the real estate agent who sells your house, and you get to choose which recruiter to work with in your job search,too.


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