Whether you’re on the market for a new career opportunity, or you’re a hiring manager looking to fill a role with the best available talent, it might seem like an obvious benefit to accept as much help as you can get. After all, the more recruiters you work with, the more options you’ll be presented with - right?
Not necessarily. It can be tempting to treat finding the right candidate or career opportunity like finding a needle in a haystack: the more people you put on the search, the quicker you’ll identify the needle. The problem is, you’re not looking for a needle in a haystack - you’re looking for a special needle in a pile of needles.
Here are four reasons why finding the right recruiter can be much more helpful than working with several recruiters as you look for that one perfect “needle.”
Let’s be honest: hiring managers and job-seekers are busy people with demanding jobs, and checking emails and responding to messages is no one’s favorite part of the day. Yet the more recruiters you engage, the more you’re signing up to receive floods of emails, phone calls, and texts that you then have to respond to and keep track of. This is hardly an efficient use of time. By choosing the right recruiter and working only with that person, you streamline your communications, which makes it a lot easier to organize the information you receive and makes it less likely that great options will slip through the cracks.
Picture this: you’re considering buying a new house so you’re taking a walk through a great neighborhood. There are a few houses with a realtor’s sign in the front yard, but then you come across one house that has multiple signs from multiple realtors displayed. You might well start wondering, “What’s going on with this house? Why are they so desperate to sell? Are the neighbors a nightmare to live next to? Who do I even call if I’m interested?” It would look disorganized, chaotic, and maybe even a little concerning.
The same thing is true of overmarketing on the job market. When a company receives the same candidate’s information from multiple recruiters, or a candidate gets a dozen phone calls about the same “amazing opportunity,” it can start to feel less like a promising option and more like spam. However, having one recruiter handle your job opening or employment candidacy adds a level of exclusivity to the presentation that is appealing to hiring managers and candidates.
When a recruiter knows they’re working on the same search as multiple competitors, it reduces their motivation to devote their time and energy to your search. After all, they might put weeks of intensive effort into finding you the best job opportunity or candidate on the market - only to find out you’ve already accepted an offer or filled the position through a different recruiter. That can leave recruiters feeling like a lot of valuable time has been wasted.
On the other hand, a recruiter who is working on a retainer or under an exclusive contingency contract is going to be highly motivated to put all of their time and effort into finding the absolute best options for you, because you have already shown that the search is a top priority. This up-front investment saves candidates and companies a lot of time and effort in the long run, and helps secure the highest quality results of a search.
Having a true relationship with a recruiter is always going to benefit companies and candidates alike. A recruiter who truly understands your company culture or long-term career goals will be able to deliver value that a team of recruiters without deep insight into your desires and requirements can’t provide. They can meet your individual needs and represent your company and personal brands in a way that helps set you apart from the competition. In short, they will know you, trust you, and be able to find you options that fit your unique situation.
In addition, recruitment partnerships can pay dividends over the long run, well past the end of the particular search you’re working on. They can keep an eye on other opportunities that fit your long-term goals, introduce you to key industry leaders who can help you learn and grow, and serve as a sounding board for candidates’ career growth and companies’ team-building questions and issues for years to come.
You wouldn’t hire multiple employees to see if one of them can do the job well. That would be a waste of time and money for a company, and it wouldn’t give you the best idea of what a highly motivated employee can do. Instead, you’d spend the time to interview and evaluate those candidates and decide who the best person for the job would be - then hire that person.
In the same way, engaging multiple recruiters is simply not in a candidate or hiring manager’s best interest. Instead, find the right recruiter for your search - someone who is qualified and motivated to find the specific kind of “needle” you’re looking for.