This is a recent conversation I had in an interview & like many I’ve had before…
Big Umbrella: Your experience sounds great, so which organisations have you applied to (or been put forward to by an agency)?
Candidate: Well, I spoke with Recruiter Y a while ago & they were going to put me forward to a few companies but wouldn’t tell me which ones
Big Umbrella: Ok no problem – do you know which locations? Any information about the roles?
Candidate: I’m sorry, no
- Company A is a client of Big Umbrella’s & we have been engaged to recruit one of their roles
- We source a strong candidate, run through an interview, the role, organisation, put together a candidate profile & refer the candidate to Company A
- As luck would have it, Company A received this candidate’s CV six months ago from Recruiter Y, without the candidate’s knowledge
- Additionally, while Company A has agreed terms with Recruiter Y from some time ago, they had not been engaged to recruit for a specific role & had “floated” the candidate CV to their internal recruitment team
Without getting into the nitty-gritty of TOBs, these situations do arise on occasion. And for the most part, our great relationships with our clients facilitate a swift & amicable solution.
Working in a close-knit industry, we are aware of many of our competitor’s clients & no doubt, vice versa. And inevitably, on occasion we have mutual clients, so how can we navigate this?
- Focus your job search on a select number of roles that you are you truly interested in
- Keep a record of the organisations you apply to
- Feel free to ask an agency for your approval to send your CV to their clients. If they refuse to tell you where they’re sending your CV, I would recommend entrusting your job search & personal information with another agent
- We have a responsibility to our candidates & clients to effectively manage stakeholders in the recruitment process
- I appreciate you would prefer not to divulge the organisations you are working with (or floating candidates to)
- However, for the benefit of all involved, please let candidates know which organisations you’re sending their CVs to & ask for confidentiality. If you engage the candidate (or client) in the process well enough, they may just work with you exclusively
- Please keep a record of candidate applications you receive directly or via an agency
- In the event of a double-up, nip it in the bud & advise the agencies as soon as possible (having clear terms & good relationships with your suppliers will be especially valuable in this instance)
- Endeavour to ensure that the candidate is treated well by both agencies & the situation doesn’t reflect poorly on your organisation, ultimately allowing you to consider the candidate for a role with your team.
- Bonus points for building a trusted & exclusive relationship with one agency 😉