Recruitment myths and why headhunting will be disrupted soon

Selected views that hopefully a few of you find helpful.

"We had very bad experiences with recruitment agencies, so we’ll not pay any up-front payments," starts a classic conversation with prospects. Or "How could you be so sure that you will find the right candidates in days when we’ve been trying with a few agencies for months already?"
Here are some selected views that hopefully a few of you find helpful.

Good candidates are gone
Really? If so, they very likely took the good recruiters with them, too. Trust me, great candidates are still out there for those of you who have relevant and competitive offers for candidates (not just salary level) and can think strategically, objectively and critically about the job market, context and your situation.

Passive candidates are hidden and don’t respond
This is not the case at all. Hire a recruiter who can understand the position, who can write a great job advertisement. Someone who understands marketing, targeting and human behavior. Someone who is creative and motivated enough to use innovative ways or even guerilla tactics to get in touch with target groups. You’d be surprised by how many so-called passive candidates respond.

Contingency vs. Retained contracts
Simplified, contingency recruitment is a concept where only one agency or recruiter wins, usually the one whose candidate is hired. And many times, none of the recruiters are paid as clients can cancel the search for any reason. With a retained recruitment contract, the client pays for part or all of the service in any case. Contingency might initially seem like a fair and client-oriented approach. But why would you believe agencies will invest know-how, creativity, time, energy and money into campaigns if they are not sure they are being paid for their work. It’s like being caught in a vicious circle.

Recruitment and headhunting is too expensive
This is true if the only value added is administration work, writing a job description, publishing it in a few places and collecting and filtering CVs. However, if the search process includes sophisticated marketing activities, and the ability to diagnose the right candidates, recruitment or headhunting is not expensive. But imagine hiring a bad candidate just for the costs comparison.

Searching quality candidates takes time
Yes, if the ratio of paid positions is about 10-20% then the agency is busy trying to figure out which positions are most efficient to fill and which ones should just be published on a few portals and social networks. Otherwise, from our experience, well set-up and targeted multichannel activities make quality candidates respond right away, on the same evening or during the next weekend. So if you are able to assess the candidates quickly, you can get results in a few days.

Agencies should provide ideal candidates
Most of you would probably agree there is no such a thing as an ideal candidate. As one client told us, “I would hire her straight away, if I found her myself. But I’m paying for this, so I expect someone better.” And yes, this candidate had a top score in terms of predispositions and context. Another common misconception is that candidates from recruitment firms will wait for feedback for 1-2 months. Well, they won’t much like those you try to hire internally.

Hiring for skills but firing for traits
What could go wrong with a nice set of skills listed in the job description? Well, many things can and surely will go wrong if you hire only for skills. Experience in event management doesn’t make a person organized and coding a few apps does not make someone systematic or detail-oriented. Similarly, memorizing and repeating information about a specific topic might make somebody look like an expert but it doesn’t say much about a person’s intellect or systematic thinking.

Why human traits and predispositions are so critical
Human traits do not change. People can adjust their behavior or approach depending on circumstances but traits are unchangeable predispositions like DNA. People might discover, suppress or control their traits but nobody can gain a trait or get rid of one. Traits have a tremendous effect on everything people do.

Disruption in recruitment is already reality
Recruitment and headhunting business will be more and more disrupted by teams that are capable of efficiently decoding human traits and predispositions. Fast and accurate diagnostics for even small and medium companies enables them to use their full potential by selecting the candidates who will make a difference for their business.


Prepared by Lubo Homola, Managing Partner at Synerta Personnel. If you are interested in any further information on the issues covered by this article, please contact us at, +421 915 70 50 70 or visit our website

Synerta Personnel and its international team has experience in 9 countries with over 300,000 candidate diagnostics. Strong traits diagnostics and verified know-how guarantees the right choice of candidate.

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