The Dark Side Of The Recruitment Industry

So, recently, I overcame my reluctance to work with the recruitment sector and commissioned three consultants to help us with our recruitment needs. To be fair, I’ve created decent relationships with all three and one of the three actually appears to have a great deal of integrity.

We found someone and hired her through the consultant, paying the recruiter’s agreed fees on time and in full. A matter of weeks later, the individual resigned, saying that ‘PR was not for her’, that she actually wanted to work in a design agency and that she wanted to work closer to home. If this was a year or so after she had joined, I could have understood but two months in, it was clear that we’d been misled and mis-sold to. As it transpired, the individual wanted to gap-fill, to earn something whilst looking for a situation more suited to her personal requirements, and paid no mind to the cost to us (which was, incidentally, around £4k).

Unfortunately, the recruitment firm declined to take any responsibility for the situation, saying the candidate was ‘outside the scope’ of their typical eight week reimbursement period (by a matter of days) but that they were willing to “give us a terrific deal as a gesture” with “a replacement charged at £1500 or next placement at half price”. It’s fair to say that this irritated me more than a little.

So, I’m not sure that we’re going to be quick to turn to recruitment agencies again, even when our requirements are absolutely critical. I now have first hand experience of their view on ‘partnership’ and, whilst I’m sure that the experience will differ greatly from one to the next, I’m not keen to feel like a number on the monthly board again in a hurry…