Advantages Of A Retained Search

Whitaker Advantages

It is important that Human Resources, client’s management team and our Staffing Consultant work effectively together to insure an effective search for the right candidate. 

The key factor in filling any position quickly through a recruiting firm is largely dependent on the time the recruiter has available to commit to that specific search. Using multiple contingency recruiters frequently will not prove effective if candidates are in short supply or the position is particularly difficult to fill as each contingency recruiter will only be able to skim the surface of the easily available candidate pool before needing to move on. 

A retained or exclusive commitment to a recruiter enables that recruiter to spend all the time required to find the best match for the company’s position. 

The advantages we along with our clients have gained over the past years include:

  • Mutual Level of Commitment: A retained search goes well beyond the typical contingency effort. Without an exclusive arrangement, it would be foolish for a recruiter to spend more than 20-30 hours on a search, particularly when industry averages show that recruiters fill one in 10 contingency assignments. An average retainer search takes 150-200 man-hours. This time allows the recruiter to cover the entire marketplace and consider many qualified candidates. Obviously, we need a client’s committed support to justify that kind of effort.
  • Quality and Quantity of Results: The difference in yield between 150 hours of search as compared to 20-30 hours is substantial. A retained program allows us the time to locate the best available candidates in the marketplace instead of referring the first qualified person we find. This insures you get the maximum performance capability for your search dollar and the person who best suits your opportunity.
  • Cost Effectiveness: Most of our clients are surprised to learn that retained search usually costs no more (often less) than contingency – even with expenses. The reason is increased cost effectiveness for us. To date our successful completion rate for retainers has been over 90% as compared to an industry average of 10% on contingency. This allows us to be more competitive in our pricing and pass some of the savings on to you.
  • Timeliness: Many people think a retained search takes longer to complete. Certainly at very high management levels this can be true. However, most middle to upper-middle management searches take 2-4 months no matter how they are conducted. Most retained recruiters work with no more than 4-6 assignments simultaneously and with a higher level of research and administrative support. This allows us to be as timely as their contingency counterparts.
  • Client Delineation: You are our client, not the individual. We discuss only your situation with the candidate; not the multitude of positions available. This insures the candidate is not distracted by other opportunities and you do not get involved in a bidding war.
  • All Your Dealings Through One Person: Your Account Manager will be the principal person in charge of your search, including all research support, interviewing, client and candidate contact, on-site visits, transitional support and retention efforts.
  • In-depth Position Evaluation and Proposal: We prepare an opportunity prospectus (brochure) for each assignment. We take the time necessary to get to know you, your organization and the community you serve. We are candid in our evaluation and will openly discuss any potential problems we discover. The brochure for prospective candidates outlines in detail the opportunity, the organization and the community.
  • Our Unique One Year Replacement Search Guarantee: Should the employee recruited by our firm terminate or be terminated from the client within one year following the start date, we agree to conduct a replacement search at no additional fee, except for out-of-pocket expenses.