The role of a headhunter as a part of recruitment industry is often confused with internal recruiters and sometimes with recruitment agencies. However, in reality all these are different in one way or the other.
Internal Recruiters primarily function within the Human Resources (HR) department of a company and look within the company itself for personnel whom they consider fit for certain job roles. On the other side, recruitment agencies match the candidates searching for jobs with firms looking forward to hiring staff.
When it comes to a headhunter, particularly an executive headhunter, he has quite different roles to play.
Defining the Role of a Headhunter
In essence an executive search refers to finding out suitable candidates to fit into middle and senior level executive job positions in certain firms. However, the important factor here is such “candidates” are not actively searching for jobs as they are already working with some companies of good repute and earning lucrative salaries.
Think of it in another way. Companies have some key and specialized positions vacant which they require to be filled by individuals equipped with high levels of talent, skill, and relevant experience in the given field. It is not an easy task to fill these positions as very often the people fit for these positions are already working in other firms as a cream of the crop. Neither do they actively seek for new jobs nor do their employers like to lose them at any cost.
There are some companies that may first prefer trying internal recruitment via their Human Resources (HR) department to determine if any of their existing staff members fits the bill, but more often than not these companies eventually get the services of a headhunter to do the executive search and help them fill the superior job position.
Headhunters are very selective in terms of recruitment which they execute on behalf of the firms that have contracted them and take extreme care to delimit the long list of potential candidates down to those who are the most suitable ones for the listed job.
How Headhunters Work?
It is very common for executive hunters to even conduct a series of interviews and tests to make it sure that the final candidates presented to the company are going to fit both the job requirements and the employer’s expectations.
There is no room for mistake here. Headhunting is not simply a matter of paper qualifications- previous job experience, candidate’s personality, confidence, communication skills, distinctions, and other factors also play a very important role in evaluating potential candidates as well.
Which Headhunter is the Best for You?
No doubt using a headhunter for the search of candidates to fill high level job positions can really help improve a company. So before anything else you should be looking for a most reliable headhunter to do the recruitment job for you. Initially there may come many to choose from so you should be open to a number of offers but choose only the best one suited for you.
Together with that, look for the past record of headhunters, especially the ratio of positions they have filled so far and see if they are akin to the job positions you are working on. You can crosscheck if the previous companies hiring these headhunters were able to get the right people they were after and whether or not they are actually working in those firms.
It is pertinent to choose boutique executive headhunter, one who tends to specialize in certain industries and sectors and quite often deals in recruitment for senior positions within specific industries. While targeting a specific sector they can then pay attention on establishing their contacts and portfolio of potential candidates in specific fields.
How to Deal with a Headhunter?
After finding the right headhunter, arrange a meeting and provide him with ample information about your own firm as well as the kind of employee you are searching for. Provide useful and enough data so that confusion and misunderstanding about the description of job roles be alleviated. Clearly share your company’s goals and the prevalent culture in the office. It is so because a company operating in Qatar, for example, will have a different set of working conditions for employees in comparison with those functioning in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.
By now getting the employee you are seeking is just around the corner. You need to keep in constant touch with your headhunter. Get updates if there are any leads or if some candidates are interested. If, at anytime, confusions arise from the job profile or information which you provided previously, they have to be taken care of immediately. Make sure that your headhunter is living up to the service agreement you discussed and signed.
Normally, an experienced headhunter uses his personal contacts in various industries and coax better quality candidates to your company while poaching upon your competitors to deliver a perfect match at your doorstep. Your headhunter will leave no stone unturned when screening the potential applicants before leaving you to conduct the final interview ensuring that you will be inducting the cream of the crop for your company.
Building Lasting Relationships with Headhunters
Since the role of a headhunter is often very specific as compared to employment agencies and internal recruiters, companies prefer building long-lasting relationships with the headhunters that they feel can deliver good results to hiring headhunters once and for all. Going one step ahead, major corporations and big multinational companies have more than one headhunter working on their behalf.
In the nutshell, maximizing the use of a headhunter can facilitate not only your own company but the prospective employees as well. If your company will have a new employee, the employees will be getting new jobs without any active involvement. All said and done, this is how a headhunter plays his or her role and delivers benefits to companies and corporations all across the globe when it comes to filling the toughest job positions.