Myths Versus Realities of Getting the Most Out of Using a Recruiting Firm

Published:07/13/2023 | Posted by Dario Furman, Director - Finance & Accounting Search

It’s time to dispel the misconceptions surrounding the recruiting industry and how a recruiting firm functions regarding what value they bring to the hiring process and the overall purpose a recruiter has when identifying and acquiring new talent for companies. It’s critical in this rapidly-changing hiring environment to understand how to really use a recruiting firm to your Company’s advantage…. because usually it’s not the way you think.

How Did We Get Here and Why It’s Important.

Just as we entrust one attorney to represent us in legal matters, rely on a single realtor to successfully sell our homes, and retain one audit firm to ensure accurate financial reporting, hiring managers should recognize the indispensable value of recruiting professionals. Yet, it remains an industry standard for companies to engage multiple search firms simultaneously.

This begs the question: Why do we deviate from the established practice of selecting one expert for critical tasks when determining recruiting needs? Well, frankly it’s typically due to myths surrounding the recruiting industry and how firms operate.  Many hiring managers think firms are just there to get you a bunch of resumes fast, or even swoop in and with 1 quick placement fix an entire division at your company, but these notions are far from the truth when it comes to the best ways to engage and utilize a recruitment firm to your advantage.

What’s the Myth Verse the Reality? 

Myth #1 – It’s beneficial to work with multiple search firms at once.

Reality: In today’s rapidly evolving job market, the recruiting industry often finds itself under scrutiny due to the competitive nature of the job market. Skepticism arises when hiring managers engage multiple recruiters simultaneously, suggesting a lack of faith in the abilities of a single search firm and the disorganization of the client.  This double standard undermines the true value that a dedicated executive recruiter can bring to the table. It’s time to challenge the misconception that more firms that work on a placement, that the candidate pool will be better, or the placement will occur faster, because ultimately neither of those things happen.  It’s critical to recognize the unparalleled benefits that result from engaging a single, expert recruiter that can control the pipeline of candidates and filter the applicants to exactly what a client needs to create long-term, successful outcomes.

Myth #2 – All recruiters are the same.

Reality: A quality recruiter should have a singular focus, an area that they specialize in and even have real-world knowledge executing the roles they now fill for clients. Just as an attorney specializes in a specific area of law or a realtor specializes in a particular market and asset class, recruiters excel in their unique areas of expertise. A great example of this concept is the firm I’m currently at, StevenDouglas, houses multiple specialized search groups, each focused on distinct sectors, functions, or industries that they support.  This approach allows us to dive deep into the nuances of talent acquisition and cultivate an extensive network of top-tier professionals in areas that we have comprehensive knowledge in. Utilizing specialized recruiters allows hiring managers to gain access to a wealth of industry-specific knowledge, trends, and connections, exponentially increasing the likelihood of finding the perfect fit for their organization.

Myth #3 – Using a recruiting firm is a short-term solution and fleeting relationship that ends when the role is filled.

Reality: In actuality, it’s best to choose a recruiter that you can build a long-term relationship with for on-going needs so you’re dealing with someone that has a real understanding of your company’s culture and history. Recruiters who have earned the trust of candidates and clients have the unique ability to foster these long-term and meaningful relationships within their network. In order to determine which candidates are optimal for a particular role, it’s necessary to spend real, genuine time with the companies and people I serve.  On my team, we average over 9 years tenure at StevenDouglas, which is amazing because when a client calls us three or five years later for help, they regularly are dealing with the same team member that facilitated the search years before. When you maintain long-term relationships, you already have the background knowledge and understanding to hit the ground running on a new search.

Beyond immediate hiring needs, it’s crucial to understand the aspirations and career trajectories of candidates I build my network around. By forging sincere connections, I not only become a trusted advisor but also a valuable career partner. This long view, big picture perspective allows recruiters to provide tailored guidance, mentorship, and access to exciting opportunities, even beyond the scope of a single search. The candidates we work with appreciate the ongoing support and professional growth opportunities we offer, cementing the bonds we have built over the years.

There are many misunderstandings and misconceptions when it comes to how a company or individual candidate can use a recruiting firm to their advantage. Unfortunately, these misnomers create scenarios where often recruiters are being used incorrectly and for the wrong reasons. Whether you’re a client or candidate, it’s imperative to understand the best way you can leverage the use of a recruiter to create successful business outcomes.  When engaging with a firm in an optimal manner and shattering the myths that often hold you back, people and organizations benefit from a wealth of specialized expertise, streamlined efficiency, and the cultivation of long-term relationships that benefit their overall growth and career goals.

About the Author:

Dario Furman’s practice spans from staff-level accounting and finance professionals to controllers and CFOs across all industries and sizes of companies. His passion for recruiting, coupled with his tireless work ethic and desire to come through for his clients, has fueled his success. As a Director of Finance & Accounting Search at StevenDouglas, Dario has dedicated over 15 years to the world of Executive Search, specializing in finance and accounting, and is proud to witness firsthand the transformative power of effective talent acquisition. If you have any questions about how a recruiting firm should be supporting you or your company, reach out to Dario anytime at 954-385-8595 or email him at [email protected].



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