A Brief Guide to Recruitment Agencies

recruitment agency

It still stands as a question. Are recruitment agencies really worth the cost?

Understandably, finding a job involves difficulties and in some cases, result to frustration. Yet many job-seekers are reluctant to contract the services of recruitment agencies. Regardless of agency track record, there seem to be an apparent lack of confidence on how these recruitment agencies can really help chances of getting a good job.

In Singapore for one, it does not help that recruitment agencies are notoriously referred to as ‘headhunters’ or ‘sourcers’.  These recruitment agencies are usually external entities that offer different services for different types of jobs including regular positions, temporary or contractual jobs, specific technical positions, manual labor and even executive level positions.

Also, the reluctance to contract recruitment agency services in Singapore has to do with the fact that there are internal or in-house corporate recruiters which are contractors of a company that source and recruit for full-time employee positions. In many cases they are housed in human resources offices or units and these employees have regular salaries and benefits.  They are relatively stable, have longer, even permanent tenures and do not rely on commissions for pay. As such, they are also less aggressive in searching for applicants and do not provide additional services that external job recruitment agencies usually provide.

And finally, there are questions on cost. Contracting the services of a job recruitment agency involve additional expenses. Although there are cases when and where recruitment agencies are paid by the employer, which means the company that hired a prospective candidate, most recruitment agencies require a fee from the candidate usually a percentage of the employee’s pay for a specified amount of time.  For the employee, this simply means less pay, usually 10-30% of the annual salary, than someone who found the position without contracting a recruitment agency.  Other job recruitment agencies are paid lump sum and therefore take their cut from the lump sum amount prior to giving the salary to the employee. This is normally the case for temporary job placement agencies.

Still, there are arguments to be made on the side of advantages. Recruitment job agencies in Singapore are generally beneficial to both employer and potential employee. For companies, recruitment agencies reduce operational cost by out-sourcing basic functions like recruitment to external entities. This simply means a company can reduce human resource management office staff needed for hiring and therefore cut cost salary and benefits. Also, since external agencies in Singapore are paid on commission basis, they are often more aggressive than internal human resource divisions and help speed-up the filling up of manpower needs.

For job seekers, recruitment agencies in Singapore have established working relationships with companies due to their track record and familiarity. Since most Singapore job recruitment agencies work with various companies or industries, they have enormous network and provide job seekers extensive options and wider chances for employment including job opportunities that are not publicly announced. Furthermore, these recruitment agencies have a good grasp of exact standards and working environments of companies and can help match the right person with the job and vice versa.