The Secrets Recruiters Don’t Want You to Know

Posted on February 06, 2019 by PaulHickey | Recruitment

Does any of this sound familiar?

“We have the largest network of candidates in the industry.”

“We guarantee to deliver at least six qualified candidates within ten days.”

“Our fees are lower than 90% of the recruitment market.”

Would you like to know why recruiters keep trying to win your business with the same tired promises?

These are the behind-the-scenes secrets recruiters don’t want you to know…

Recruiters Struggle With Recruitment

We’re not going to pretend to speak for the whole recruitment industry, but our recruitment consultants, between them, have enough experience to speak with authority on some of the common practices.

For example, did you know that many recruiters find their own recruitment very difficult to manage.


The job of a recruitment consultant requires many different abilities and is carried out in a high-pressure environment in which performance is rated by how many fees are earned each month.

Most people can’t cope with the work and, if someone has never worked in recruitment before, it’s very hard to know in advance whether they have what it takes.

Recruiters commonly hire bunches of people with enthusiasm and and then just wait to see who thrives and who quits after six months.

To make things even more challenging, if someone turns out to be really good at recruitment, after a few years they tend to make the decision to strike out on their own and start their own firm.

Leaving the recruitment business owner no choice but to hire another group of hopefuls.

Most Work Goes Unpaid

Recruiters know that when they receive a brief from a client, there’s a good chance that several other recruitment firms are competing for the same business.

And since a fee is only earned with a successful placement, there’s a strong chance that the work carried out on an assignment will result in no earnings.

The generally-accepted solution is to take on as many assignments as possible, send candidate CVs to the clients as quickly as possible, and hope that one or two of them land.

It’s a Numbers Game

If this is making it sound like the recruitment world is about throwing a lot of mud at the wall and seeing what sticks…

You’re not far wrong.

When you have this much uncertainty baked into a process, it’s inevitable that it becomes something of a numbers game.

This is why recruiters often pitch with the same standard lines about deep networks, low fees and speed of delivery. It’s a reflection of how the work is carried out and the expectations of everybody involved.

Or at least, that’s how it used to be.

GrassGreener Group hasn’t operated this way in a very long time.

Recruitment With Results

Once you strip away the fluff and marketing-speak, the most important element of recruitment is putting the right candidate in the right position.

When you do that, they stay in the role long-term, and everybody wins.

But this can’t happen when you’re focused on speed and corner-cutting.

Instead, GrassGreener Group uses the i-intro® method for working with employers on a retained basis. This allows our recruitment consultants to focus on quality and an end result that benefits both candidate and client.

When we take on an assignment we take a detailed job brief, we search the market to find the best candidates (not just the ones hanging around job boards), we assess the shortlist to identify the 3-4 best individuals, and we work with our clients to help them ask the important questions during the job interviews.

Instead of a rush job in which you’re sharing the recruiter’s efforts with a dozen other clients, you get a job done properly with adequate time allowed to produce a satisfactory outcome.

This is just one of the reasons why 96% of the candidates we place are still in the role after 12 months.


Contingency-style recruiters are doing a difficult job in difficult circumstances and, for the most part, are honest, hard-working people doing the best they can.

But, as an employer, that shouldn’t be your concern. Your focus should be on finding the right candidates for your business.

This means rejecting the recruiters that offer cheap, outdated services based on maximum speed and minimum quality. And instead hiring a recruitment firm on a retained basis.

It’s not about numbers. It’s about results.


For a no-obligation discussion about how we can help you carry out a successful recruitment campaign, click here