There are two kinds of recruiters: Internal recruiters who are paid employees of the hiring company and external recruiters who work for recruiting firms that serve hiring companies.
They have one thing in common: their mission is to identify candidates who have the potential to serve a hiring need. There are other similarities, but there are also big differences between them you should understand.
The internal recruiter:
Is a company employee who works in HR and is paid a steady salary. He or she has no “skin in the game”.
He/she is often pressed to find candidates for a variety of positions, may or may not understand the job he/she is hiring for and may not be able to understand how you fit the needs of the job.
He/she may or may not view their work as nothing more than “just a job”.
He/she may have a myriad of other responsibilities in addition to recruiting.
He/she is driven to identify good candidates but is not incented financially for doing so other than having a base salary and employment.
The external recruiter:
The external recruiter usually works on a commission-only basis, therefore has considerable incentive to make placements.
He/she is paid part of the commission the firm receives from the hiring company, typically 25 to 35 percent of the candidates’ first year salary.
Very often there is a considerable time delay, perhaps 3 months or more, before the recruiter receives payment for a placement. Therefore the pressure is constantly on to find new candidates and achieve ‘sendouts’ (face-face interviews) every day.
Like the internal recruiter, the external recruiter may not understand the job he/she is recruiting for, but usually works in only one industry or discipline and has a higher incentive to understand the job, at least the jargon of the job, in order to make placements.
There tends to be considerable turnover in recruiting firms. Those who fail to get their candidates hired often leave the recruiting firm for lack of income, or they get fired.
Recruiting firm management presses hard for recruiters to make many calls each day. They know their business is a “numbers game”. Unless you are a “purple squirrel” you may not get much attention.
Sometimes it is not obvious from a job ad which type of recruiter you may be dealing with. When you get a call from a recruiter, make sure you understand which type is calling you.
Karl has been reviewing resumes for people at no cost since 1999. He has been counseling job seekers since that time as well. If you would like his help, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org