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Headhunting, does it really work?

Some organisations call it headhunting and others call it a “targeted search”.  No matter how you look at it, it’s about trying to find the right candidates for the role when the normal recruitment channels have failed.

You may be advertising on SEEK, local papers, Facebook etc. without any luck.  A professional recruiter and head hunter knows what you need based on the PD and a job brief and can generally find you a pool of great talent normally through LinkedIn and SEEK talent.

So, let’s break it down, what is headhunting in a nutshell?

It is a form of recruitment and selection when the recruiter narrows down the search looking for a specific skill set and contacts them directly with a potential job opportunity.  The recruiter is not calling to make an offer but to help convince them to take part in the recruitment and selection process with their client.  They will have done some research on your CV or LinkedIn profile and would be contacting you as they are interested in your knowledge and experience and want to discuss it further.

Why would you use headhunting?

You may have advertised through the usual channels and are not getting any bites, or the bites you are getting do not have the skills and experience you need to fulfil the role.

Some companies may also use head-hunters as they do not want to waste money advertising if it is a specialist role, or if they do not want competitors to know they are recruiting.

Is headhunting ethical?

This can depend on the company and head-hunter.  A gentle shoulder tap is very different to almost stalking/aggressive behaviour.  There is no problem contacting suitable candidates letting them know you have a potential opportunity for them.  Happy employees usually don’t leave, so don’t feel too bad about making an approach.  If they choose not to respond then do not hound them and keep contacting them.  Some people don’t feel comfortable saying they are not interested so take the hint – silence is golden.

In business, time is money!  As a business owner, you may not have time to advertise, short list and interview candidates yourself.  This is when outsourcing your recruitment needs comes in handy.   We can assist in writing the job ad, advertising, short listing, interviewing and head hunting (if needed).

If you need help with recruiting call HR Gurus on 1300 959 560 and one of our Recruitment Gurus will be able to assist.

Written by resident HR Guru Natalie Bol

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