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What The Heck is The Difference Between These Recruiters?


Believe it or not, not everybody in the world is a recruiter. I know, sometimes it’s almost impossible to imagine that some of us don’t know our AI from our ATS and before you know it, it might be too late to comfortably ask. What we need is a simple guide to the types of recruiters working in the industry, what they do, who they work with, and so on.

Luckily, SocialTalent has put together just the guide…

Agency Recruiters

First up are agency recruiters. These are employed by a company looking to fill a role – not by candidates who need somebody to help them find a job! However, it is in their best interests to help candidates find the best role.

How does it work?

An agency is usually sent a job description by a company, and will then start the process of compiling a shortlist. The shortlist is made up of the CVs of suitable candidates for the role. It’s then handed over to the hiring company so that they might select candidates they think will fit the position, company and culture. The recruiter will be asked to coordinate the interview and ta-da, a candidate is sitting in front of the hiring manager, and the recruiter is on his way to getting paid a percentage salary if hired. Not too shabby! 

Nothing in this life is perfect, not even agency recruiting, and it can have its disadvantages. Utilising an agency to help with onboarding new people can cost an organisation quite a bit of money. Through improving their social strategies and understanding of the job world online, money can be saved. But remember, it’s usually fair to assume that the experienced recruiter employed by the agency may have something to bring to the table that you hadn’t even considered. It may be worth that extra few bob after all…

Corporate Recruiters

Corporate (or in-house) recruiters play an entirely different ball game to an agency. Rather than focusing on filling roles sent to them by various companies and organisations, they’re concerned with onboarding new talent to one particular employer. The hiring manager in the company is tasked with determining the need, writing the job description, conducting the in-person interview and ultimately makes the decision to hire the candidate or not.

The in-house recruiter’s role in this process includes distributing the job ad in ways that ensure it will reach the best candidates, as well as conducting the screening interview. They will also be tasked with sourcing passive candidates for the role, and as corporate recruiters are more concerned with retention than agency recruiters, it’s in their best interest that the person who takes the job keeps it.

The corporate recruiter can gain very specific experience in an industry through spending a long period of time in a company or organisation. However, this may limit their expertise to a more narrow field than the agency recruiter. Finding the right in-house recruiter will require more care and consideration on the part of the company, as it will be of the utmost importance that they understand the company culture and values.

Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO)

RPO agencies are concerned with the recruitment process as a whole, which can extend beyond the hiring process. They may also be concerned with improving turnover rates, technology, scalability, and time required to fill a position. The position of the RPO recruiter is usually customisable and consultative, meaning that they might work on the entire recruiting process, or focus on a couple of aspects – it is entirely up to the company.

While it may be time and cost effective to employ the help of an agency recruiter in certain circumstances – a role which needs to be filled quickly, a batch hire etc – an RPO can help to streamline the process for the future. By working with leadership teams and hiring managers, the RPO recruiter can create and implement a more long-term strategy for hiring which could eventually lead to a much more effective recruiting process. However, the RPO recruiter will always answer to their own agency, as opposed to the organisation which they work with. This means that they may not enjoy the same benefits as others in the company, and might find it hard to fully integrate into the office culture.

Now that you know the ABC’S (or ARC’s) of recruiting, why not continue your learning. No matter what kind of recruiter you are, SocialTalent can help you get better results!

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