What Type of Executive Recruiter is Right for Your Job Search?

When you’ve made the decision to start looking for a new job opportunity and you’re seeking out an executive recruiter, you might be surprised to learn that there are different types of recruiter agencies that offer services and tailor to a particular individual’s set of goals. Knowing how to find the recruiter that will work best for your job search is the first step to finding the best job for you. There are two main types of executive recruiters: contingency and retainer.


Contingency recruiters can be self-employed individuals or a member of an agency who work on their own to compile lists of good candidates then work to place them at a company. With a contingency firm,  the signs on to work with a head hunter, but if the headhunter lands you a job, they receive a commission paid by the company. The headhunter’s relationship is with the candidate but their primary role is to please the hiring company enough to fill the position in the first place.


Retainer firms represent a company’s employer only and conduct search assignments on an exclusive contract basis only. Recruiting efforts are strategically focused on a broadly targeted range of potential candidates that may or may not be active in the job market. The recruiting process is result-oriented and usually recommends a handful of highly-qualified and ranked individuals to the client company in one to two months.

If you’re having difficulty locating an executive recruiter for your job search, Executive Resumes Atlanta recommends reaching out to colleagues for referrals on recruiting agencies. Word of mouth is an excellent way to gain new knowledge of finding an agency that will collaborate in your job search.