retained executive search firm

08:45 Nov 15, 2013
This question was closed without grading. Reason: Answer found elsewhere

English to Dutch translations [PRO]
Bus/Financial - Business/Commerce (general) / Personeelsbeleid
English term or phrase: retained executive search firm
Als in:XXXX is an international strategic group of independent, owner managed retained executive search firms with members in virtually every market.

Een firma die op zoek is naar gekwalificeerd hoger opgeleid personeel, maar hoe luidt de kreet bij ons? Met name het woordje "retained" hier.
Robert Rietvelt
Local time: 01:18

Summary of reference entries provided
retained search vs contingency search
Kitty Brussaard
Business Week: What You Should Know About Headhunters
Marloes van Beveren

Discussion entries: 10


Reference comments

38 mins
Reference: retained search vs contingency search

Reference information:
What most people don’t realize is that there are two different types of recruiters/headhunters out there. Recruiters work on either a Retained or a Contingency basis. What are the differences and how does it all affect you as a job seeker? This is my attempt at explaining how it works.


Working on a retained basis means the recruiter will charge an upfront fee to the client to conduct a search. They will operate on an exclusive basis meaning the job will only be filled through this recruitment company. These recruiters work very closely with their client and will take their time and use an agreed methodology to find the best person for the job. The process is usually rigorous with a shortlist of anything from three to ten names being presented before interviews commence. In a perfect world, the retained recruiter will be able to present five candidates with the perfect skills, location, salary etc and all the client has to do is pick the one they like the most.

A retained recruitment assignment doesn’t come cheap, the client will expect to pay up to 50% of the projected first annual salary of the successful candidate. Companies will request a retained search when they are looking to fill a senior position and sometimes when all other cheaper search options have been exhausted.

Contingency search on the other hand is when the candidate is the bargaining chip. Contingency is sometimes described as No Win, No Fee (or even No Cure, No Pay). It is what it says on the tin, a service performed by a recruitment company for free until the day a candidate represented by them takes a position with their client. Recruiters working on this basis often have to compete with the client’s internal HR department, advertising, direct applicants and typically one or more other recruitment companies.

The trick here is to represent the best candidate or candidates and to do this faster than the other channels. If for instance the vacancy is hard to fill, chances are there will only be a few candidates out there qualified for the position. Getting to these before everyone else is vital for the successful no win, no fee recruiter.

Kitty Brussaard
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in DutchDutch
PRO pts in category: 144
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18 hrs
Reference: Business Week: What You Should Know About Headhunters

Reference information:
"The retained executive search consultant is engaged on an exclusive basis by a hiring company to identify and assess candidates to fill senior management positions typically paying a salary above $150,000. These consultants typically recruit for strategic executive jobs and are paid a fee for the search, usually without regard to its eventual outcome."

Marloes van Beveren
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Dutch
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