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The Fordyce Letter

Straight Talk for the Recruiting Profession

Articles tagged 'clientmanagement'

Jeff's On Call!

You Can’t ‘Steal’ An Employee Who Doesn’t Want to Go


Hello Jeff -

I enjoy reading your columns. I experienced an incident on which I’d value your opinion.

I submitted a candidate (blind profile) to the recruiting manager of an AmLaw100 firm. A few hours later, I get a phone call from her. She asks  me, “Are you working for us or against us? I know that you sent an email to one of our associates recently (trying to entice them away).”

Now I feel that she won’t consider my candidate, mostly out of spite. Here are the facts:

Jeff's On Call!

Avoid the Fight and Get Your Fee When You Reorder Your Sendout Process


Hi Jeff,

You are such a great help to us in figuring out what to do! Thank you for sharing your wisdom and experience.

I just placed a candidate with a large software company. I sent my standard placement agreement (25% fee) to HR but they did not sign it.

The HR person told me that we would get something processed if the candidate proceeded into the interview process.

The candidate then proceeded all the way through the process (in spite of HR stalling the paperwork), and just accepted the company’s offer of a base salary of $160k (plus another $40k in bonuses). At our standard fee of 25% of first year salary, it would be $50k.


Turning Around the Impossible Search

Magnifier search - Tanatat - Free

Magnifier search - Tanatat - FreeThere is no such thing as an “easy fill” when it comes to recruiting. Every search will have its ups and downs, and it is our job as recruiters to overcome those challenges and provide results that will satisfy our clients. One of those recurring challenges involves working with clients who want a certain type of candidate, specifically: a candidate who does not exist.

It does not matter how talented or connected you are, inevitably you will come across a client who wants one person to take on the job of many, or who underestimates how much it will cost them to acquire their dream candidate. 

Cold Calling, Jeff's On Call!, Relationships

How To Turn Client Criticism Into A Win

Placements and the law logo

Although it’s rarely discussed openly, the most pervasive problem in doing search is internalizing criticism from employers. It causes recruiter burnout, limits options, stifles creativity and results in low self-esteem.

That is why overcoming objections is such an important part of any placement training program. But overcoming objections doesn’t overcome the effects of destructive criticism. This PTL column will show you how to do so and improve your bottom line.

Let’s start with your role in the placement process. With few exceptions, the relationships between the recruiter and the client are transitory. You’re in a “what have you done for me lately” business. You’re only as good as your last placement. Don’t perform, suffer a massive ego stroke, or overcharge and you’ll be history. This is a reality of business; it’s a value-for-value relationship. That’s why you charge for your services, and that’s why they pay. For this reason, satisfied clients are the key to a satisfied, successful you.

Fees, Industry News

Here’s How To Get Fees You Didn’t Expect

Jeff Allen mug

Fee Catcher home pageIt’s not that the Internet could ever replace you.

It’s that the Internet is like this huge, unattended, 24-hour candy superstore – fully stocked with candy-dates. Sweet-toothed “clients” skate through the aisles, tasting the free samples. Then, they just help themselves to the ones they like best. Sugar-highed, they skate right out the back door.  Ergo, “back-door hires.”

Your name’s on the wrapper from A to Z: an Abba-Zaba resume. No problem. Just rip it off and “rip it off.”

You might never know that candidate who didn’t make it months ago, now has, and before your fee-year’s expired.

Ask Barb

Work For the Money and Not For the Order

Ask Barb

Dear Barb:

We work so many orders that end up generating no revenue. Do we just quit working with these clients? I hate to think of what this is costing me in time and money. The problem is you never know who will hire and who will waste your time. Any hints on how to determine what business is worth our time?

Paul W.
Buffalo, NY
How-To, Relationships

When Enough is Enough, Danny Says Use “Disruptive Honesty”

according to Danny logo

Dear Danny,

A client is not keeping its commitment to the process (not getting back quickly after the final on site round of interviews, committing to provide an offer within two days of these interviews, foot dragging, making repeated commitments and then breaking them).

I push, and explain it sends a bad signal to the candidate and is not what they agreed to. As part of this, I’m also concerned that the client makes me look bad to our candidate and, that if they’re marketable elsewhere, they will be hesitant to work with us as a result of being jerked around by the first client we put them in to.

Ask Barb

Manage Client Expectations by Stating Your Own

Ask Barb

Dear Barb:

I own a contingency direct placement firm and specialize in IT. It’s more difficult than ever to surface top talent. Unfortunately, even when we do surface great candidates, our clients screen out most of the candidates we present.

Often the specs they give us are impossible to fill, so we surface the best talent available, but they want the “perfect” person which doesn’t exist in this market. Any ideas on how we can put pressure on our clients?

Stephen M.
San Francisco, CA

Don’t Let the Client Bulldoze You Into Making the Offer

Under pressure - free

Under pressure - freeYou’ve worked hard and spent weeks assessing the client’s needs and interviewing potential candidates. Finally the perfect match has been found and the client is anxious to have your candidate come onboard. As recruiters it is our moment of shining glory. The stars have aligned and we stand at the apex of everything we are about and work for. Then the client puts the entire process into a tailspin by doing the unthinkable— insisting that they make the job offer to the applicant.

STOP! Do not let this happen. Nothing could be worse for the client, the candidate or for you!

Ask Barb

Your Job Is To Figure Out What Will Make a Match

Ask Barb

Dear Barb:
I’ve about had it with my candidates and clients. They are making such awful decisions and saying things that are ridiculous. How do I get them to change their attitudes and decisions without offending them?

Mary Z.
Detroit, MI

Dear Mary:
If you want to experience a high level of success at recruiting, you need to learn two very important lessons:

  • It is not your job to agree or disagree with your clients.
  • It is not your job to agree or disagree with your candidates.

In fact, neither of them welcomes your opinion and often don’t follow your advice. The truth is you never really know who your clients will hire. You can’t screen for chemistry, company culture, and personality.

On the client side, it is your job to listen to the feedback you get from your client and figure out exactly what type of talent they will hire.

On the candidate side, it is your job to present an opportunity that hits this candidate’s hot buttons so they will accept an offer when it is extended. You deal with human beings on both sides of the sale who change their minds. It’s just easier to work with them when you learn not to agree or disagree with them, but rather figure out what will lead them up to an offer and acceptance.

Barbara J. Bruno, CPC, CTS