Article – Being Headhunted

Headhunting – A Short Guide To Maximising Your Chances

Being headhunted can be one of the most flattering ways to be offered a new job. Besides the boost to your ego, you may get an unexpected chance to improve your salary and career prospects or to work for a company that recognises and values your skills and achievements.

Headhunters and Recruitment Consultants are used by employers to find exactly the person they need. They are usually paid a commission to match the right candidate to a job vacancy.

Although headhunting is still a new concept to a lot of people in Britain, it is accepted practice in America to look for the sort of candidates who would benefit your company and approach them through a Headhunting or Executive Search company. Industries such as finance and retail typically use these types of services. Headhunting for senior roles has also been commonplace for many years but the advent of online CV databases and LinkedIn has now enabled recruiters to target candidates directly.

There are now many firms that specialise in procuring desired candidates for their clients. On this page, we discuss some basic methods to help you improve your chances of being headhunted.

How to get noticed by a Headhunter

You could be spotted in your current role. This can happen in any industry; talent spotting is important for businesses that are looking to expand. Your skills and talents can be recognised in any job, at any time. You may be asked to form a new department, shoulder more responsibility or a friend at a rival store may ask you to join them. You must be ready for every opportunity so always have your CV up to date.

You can also make yourself available to recruiters in a number of ways. The most effective is to select a suitable online CV database and add your CV. Many large internet job boards also operate CV database services and they are generally easy to use.

You should also create a LinkedIn Profile as many recruitment agencies use this to find suitable candidates. If appropriate, you should also look to improve your social media with networking in mind. Ensure that all of your social media profiles are suitable for the role, up to date and accurate. Then look to improve your social networking, to establish your credibility you could create a relevant industry blog. By becoming available this will enable Headhunters and recruiters to view your CV and contact you to discuss new opportunities.

There are many ways that you can improve your chances of being selected by a firm who wants YOU.

  • Approach Headhunting, Executive Search or Recruitment Consultancy companies yourself, be proactive
  • Be ready and on the lookout for opportunities, if you are engaged in your environment you will impress others
  • Improve your knowledge base, become more involved in your career, learn as much as you can
  • You could consider seeking a mentor, you could find out more about ways to improve your situation
  • Try to seek to gain quantifiable information about your achievements, use figures to demonstrate your impact
  • Improve your networking skills and stay in touch with your contacts, both work related and personal

Executive Search / Recruitment Agencies   

Care must be taken to get the best out of a relationship with an Executive Search Company or a Recruitment Agency. Here are some tips to help you.

  • Keep in mind that the client is paying a professional, to find suitable candidates, Headhunters are not there just to help you find a job; they are ultimately working for their client and their commission, so keep this in mind 
  • Be honest about yourself, your experience, skills and qualifications, any lies could be uncovered
  • Keep all appointments and return any calls promptly; always keep in touch with them, be proactive and memorable
  • Listen to what you are being asked to do, if you are unsure about anything that you have been told, always check
  • Always check that you have all the correct details for any appointments or interviews, including directions 
  • Do your research before any interviews, you can check the internet for useful information
  • Get up to speed on current events, especially if they are industry related and be prepared to talk about them
  • Think about any job offer carefully, ensure that it matches the job specification that you were provided 
  • Do not be afraid to ask your consultant for help and their views on how you should answer tough interview questions