Why exclusivity trumps multi-agency recruitment every time

  18th March 2019       Claire Bond
 Client, Accounting & Finance, Engineering, Science & Space, Executive Search, Human Resources, IT & Software Solutions, Office & Commercial, Recruitment

When it comes to using the services of a recruitment agency to fill your next vacancy, it can seem to make sense to cast your net wide. With multiple consultants working on your behalf, you’ll find the perfect candidate for your business in no time, right? Not necessarily.

It’s not so much a case of many hands make light work, but rather too many cooks can spoil the broth.

Partnering with a recruitment agency on an exclusive basis does not mean you have to award all your available jobs to just one company, though. Different roles call for different skill and industry expertise, after all.

However, there are three key advantages to having just one agency working towards finding you talented candidates for specific vacancies.

Candidate reach

There is a misconception that getting a number of recruitment agencies to advertise your jobs means your job will be seen by more candidates. While some job seekers do have an affiliation with certain recruiters, the reality is that most are registered on several job sites and with several agencies, especially when they are actively looking.

Any recruitment agency worth their salt will advertise your vacancies on all major job boards and social media sites. This means that using multiple agencies will potentially result in your job advert being seen several times by the same people. In turn, you might receive multiple applications from the same candidate via different agencies. This is not only frustrating for you, but frustrating for the job seeker who thought they had two applications being considered!

It’s highly likely that you’ll still reach a decent amount of candidates using only one recruitment agency, but that you’ll also benefit from their long-standing relationships with passive contacts.

Commitment to success

You might think that a multi-agency approach to recruitment drives commitment up, but it can actually drive it down. Instead of fighting to be the first agency to send you the biggest and best batch of CVs, consultants will follow their usual processes to get your job advert live and in front of job seekers, but spend little extra time actually looking for suitable candidates.

When you provide a recruitment agency with exclusivity, there is still no risk to you other than the fact that the job might not be filled (which is still the case when you use several recruitment agencies anyway!). The work to get your job specification right, advertised to the right candidates via the right channels, including a passive approach, and CV shortlisting and screening is all front-loaded. So, the agency takes on all of the risk and still won’t earn a fee until a successful placement has been made.

They will dedicate time and resources to filling your vacancy because they know that with commitment and less competition, they have a higher chance of success for both you and them.

Consultative approach

When awarded exclusive recruitment rights, consultants will likely spend more time with you initially to fully understand your business, its needs and the requirements of the role. Using their expert knowledge of the local job market, experience working with similar roles in your industry (because you should always look to work with recruiters with specialist experience) and understanding of candidate availability, they will be able to advise on the best way to position and package a job and a company.

With more time comes the ability for recruitment consultants to use their experience to go beyond basic CV skill matching within a candidate database. They will be able to spot hidden gems and talented individuals via manual searches and in-depth conversations with candidates.

The first step to exclusive agency recruitment

If you haven’t yet worked with a recruitment agency, then ‘trying before you buy’ is an option. Just be prepared for a lower success rate and slower time to hire. When you do have the time, however, do you research and come up with a shortlist of recruitment agencies who you think could help you with your hiring needs.

Think about what industry you operate in, the various jobs and skills that your business needs and location. It can be a good idea to put together a Preferred Supplier List of agencies with different specialisms.

At Bond Williams Professional Recruitment, our team has over 200 years’ combined recruitment experience and specialises in Accounting & Finance, Human Resources, IT & Software Solutions, Office & Commercial and Engineering, Science & Space roles.

We pride ourselves on providing a committed service regardless of whether you work with us on an exclusive basis or not, but this is because we are confident that we can deliver results and encourage you to work with us exclusively next time! Our exclusive clients also benefit from preferential rates.

Get in touch with your specialist consultant today.

Claire Bond


Claire has almost 25 years Recruitment experience. A specialist in the regional recruitment marketplace, Claire has extensive local knowledge and holds a reputation for quality, integrity, honesty and excellent matching. Heading up the HR and Office & Commercial Divisions of Bond Williams. Claire is responsible for the overall growth and …

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