Unser Blog

24. September 2021

How you can tell whether a headhunter is serious or not

Due to the increasing specialization in the economy, only a handful of candidates can be considered for many positions. This is why a large proportion of companies are increasingly turning to headhunters in their search for suitable top talent. In the last ten years, the personnel consulting industry has roughly doubled in size. This growth, as well as high individual fees, naturally attracts inexperienced and dubious market participants.

But how do I know if the headhunter is really “good” and thus helpful for my search? For candidates as well as for companies, the multitude of recruitment agencies can quickly become a challenge.

Our tips for candidates:
I am looking for a job, what should I look for in a headhunter?

  1. Check whether the headhunter gives his/her name on the phone. If he/she does not, follow up. If you still don’t get an answer, it’s better to end the conversation and not accept the offer immediately. Also important: Do you have the feeling that the headhunter is seriously interested in you, or does he/she want to turn you away after a few minutes? Good headhunters are very interested in finding the perfect position for a candidate that really fits. The prerequisite for this is a detailed exchange with each other, and 10 minutes is usually not enough.
  2. Can the headhunter list specific job offers for which the resume is requested? The general rule here is: “Resume collectors” are usually dubious. They arbitrarily collect as many resumes as possible without having a concrete position to fill.
  3. A trustworthy headhunter will normally only pass on your resume to the position discussed. If by chance there are other job openings that fit you, he/she will contact you first to discuss.
  4. Data protection, confidentiality, discretion: The consultant will never pass on your data to third parties without your consent and knowledge. In addition, you agree in advance to the data protection regulations, in which your rights are described, among other things.
  5. What does the headhunter know about the company he/she is introducing you to? Make sure that he/she can tell you something about the company’s background and product. It is also important that the headhunter knows the team structure and exactly to which companies he/she is placing the candidates.
  6. Does the headhunter ask for a payment or deposit directly from you? Then you should rather keep your hands off it… We advise you without obligation and of course free of charge!

Our tips for companies:
I would like to hire a headhunter for my company, what is important?

  1. What does the web presence of the company and the headhunter look like on online platforms such as LinkedIn? Information about the company and its activities should be available there. Of course, it is also worth taking a look at the website. Does it make a serious first impression? Can the company be found on these platforms at all and how transparent is its presentation?
  2. Does the recruiter know your industry and your professional environment? A good personnel consultancy must have an industry specialization. Because no recruitment consultancy can know every industry equally well. A serious headhunter knows the market, its rules and its peculiarities. In particular, however, a good consultant has a resilient network in the industries on which he/she focuses.
  3. Does the headhunter inform you about the search process ? A good headhunter always maintains contact with the client. This includes a regular exchange, with information on the status of the search as well as absolute openness. The consultant will also let you know the methodology used to identify and contact candidates and how interviews are conducted.
  4. Last but not least, you can recognize a serious headhunter by the fact that he/she will not send you 10 random profiles directly after the first phone call, but will deal intensively with your company and only send you suitable profiles after a requirements analysis. The prerequisite for this is always the consent of the candidates, because without their “ok”, a sensible consultation does not pass on any data.

    Do you have further questions or are you looking for a suitable headhunter in the IT sector? Then get in touch with us. We will be happy to advise you!