Recruiters can get a bad rap, and like in any industry, there are those in the profession just not cut out for it. So how can you quickly tell the good ones from those who will waste your time? The quick answer, niche focus!
Recruitment firms with a niche focus have become successful by taking the time to truly understand a subset/category of the market and become experts in that focus. They don’t try to be all things to all people.
Niche recruitment firms can’t help most job applicants, but they can provide tremendous value for the select few who fall within their niche.
So if you’re in the process of looking for a new role, here are the 7 benefits of working with a niche Recruiter:
Looking for a new role but not sure where you stack up against your peers regarding compensation and skills? Niche Recruiters have current market insights on what the current compensation numbers look like.
Leverage the experience and market knowledge of a search firm that understands the realities that affect salaries:
- The seniority of the role
- The scarcity of experiences and skills needed
- How your experiences and abilities measure to other active candidates
- Current market conditions
- How competitive of a landscape you’re in
They can give different salary realities for those who may have seemingly similar titles and years of experience but have different responsibilities and outcomes or specialties like cyber and AI/ML.
Many niche and specialist Recruiters have access to the hidden job market. The amazing roles that never make it onto a website or get scraped by a job posting site. Being on a Recruiter’s radar allows you access to the hidden job market of roles that only apply to your specialty.
The average candidate changes jobs every 2.3 years (2 years + 3 months), but plenty of people are employed for 5+ years with one employer. This means many candidates will find themselves participating in offer negotiations infrequently and are often unprepared for all that it entails. One of the benefits of working with a Recruiter is that they are professional talent scouts and negotiators.
Some firms like ours have a team of talent scouts (Recruiters) and offer negotiators (AEs) who ensure we find the talent our clients need to hire as well as ensure both parties are satisfied with the offer of employment.
The benefit to candidates is your offer being negotiated and presented by a professional who earns their living by successfully negotiating for both parties. They need to ensure both the client is happy with the skills the candidate brings to the table and that the candidate is happy with the compensation being offered. They are motivated to get you the best possible offer because their business is based on a percentage of the salaries their placements earn.
Another benefit is that your character remains intact even if things get emotional during the offer negotiation process. The smaller your niche is, the more critical it is to ensure the relationship and reputation between the candidate and employer remain healthy.
Your Recruiter will handle the details surrounding your thoughts and compensation requests with them directly. They are the middle man, trying to keep everything calm, positive and moving toward a mutually beneficial outcome.
This reduces the likelihood of damaging a relationship with your future employer should contract negotiations get a little sticky or alignment on comp cannot be made.
This is often the number one most overlooked benefit - Recruiters will most likely have insights about the areas of an offer where an employer may be flexible. They know the client's emotional state - is experiencing interview fatigue? Or is anxious to get to a hiring decision? Did they love you and have to have you, or are you actually a second choice?
This is the insider knowledge you don’t get when applying directly and can help you decide where to push for more, where you stand in the process, and if you should continue looking for other offers as backups.
Unlike the conversation with the company’s HR rep, you can be transparent about the role and the company with your Recruiter. After all, their goal is to make sure both the client and candidate are happy; if that’s not going to be the case, they will not be offended.
You can discuss with a Recruiter:
- What are the factors most important to you in the change you make?
- What are possible concerns or hesitancies?
- How does the role compare to others you are considering?
- What is the number you'll accept?
- Besides base, what other factors do you need to move forward (vacation, equity, bonus, benefits, flexibility, etc.)
These are all discussions you should have with a Recruiter that can help you find the best possible position. It can also save you a bunch of time and interviews should a role that sounds appealing from the job description actually not align with your goals, values, etc.
Recruiters can help maintain and expand your personal brand within your industry, as that industry is their niche. You never know when another dream role might come along or another chance to get your name out there with industry-heavy hitters.
While working with a Recruiter isn’t for every candidate, there are many benefits and advantages. Next time a Recruiter with a niche in your skillset or industry drops you in an InMail, reply. You never know what opportunities or market knowledge could arise from a quick conversation.