How Do Headhunters Work?

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What is a headhunter?

A headhunter, also known as a recruiter, is the link between a variety of exceptional companies and qualified professionals. Whether working to fill open positions for a firm or create career opportunities for candidates, headhunters wear many hats.

Generating business

The key to being a successful headhunter is building strong relationships with current and potential clients to create business. This means cold-calling companies, selling the recruiting firm's services and maintaining a stable track record, to name a few. All these skills are necessary not only to produce business, but also to keep clients coming back.

Finding talent

On the other hand, headhunters have to recruit professional candidates to fill positions. If a headhunter has secured an array of job openings for high-level companies, then those companies need high-level employees. It’s the headhunter’s job to locate potential employees that have the experience and professionalism companies need. Being able to persuade the right candidate to fill the position is vital.

Making a connection

Once business is stable and headhunters have many candidates to choose from, matching the right person with the right company is a necessity. Sometimes, even with a diverse collection of professionals, it can be difficult to pinpoint a viable candidate for the job. With a little research and hard work, headhunters can make a match and send the candidate out for an interview.

Placing a candidate with a company

After all the work has been done, headhunters close the deal by joining the perfect candidate with the right company and making a placement. This is the essential goal in a headhunter’s career and is what makes all the long hours, constant communication and top-notch sales skills worth while.

Networking is a must

Sometimes a headhunter has plenty of business and not enough candidates or lots of candidates but no positions to fill. This is why it’s so important to network with other headhunters. For example, one headhunter may have a relationship with a great company, but doesn’t have anyone to fill the job. Another headhunter may have the perfect candidate, but nowhere to send him. As a result, headhunters can work together, match the candidate with the company, then split the finder’s fees.

Reaping the benefits

Being a headhunter involves a lot of daily work, and the rewards are accordingly extensive. Companies hire headhunters to handle all the necessary legwork, such as placing ads for employment, finding candidates and issuing a screening process. Furthermore, headhunters benefit monetarily, since companies pay headhunters substantial finder’s fees, which makes all the hard work worth it.