Recruitment agencies and headhunters are third-party HR employees. When companies try but cannot find the right person for a job opening, they go to these agencies and outsource their recruiting efforts to them so these agencies can find that specific candidate. Working with a headhunter can be an effective way to speed up your job search. However, don’t forget that no one cares about your career and job search as much as you do.
First, you should understand that recruiting agencies generally hire two types of employees: contract employees and full-time employees. A contract employee is someone who is hired for a special project. For example, it can be for three months, six months, or nine months. An employee would go on maternity leave and the company may need someone to cover her position, so it hires a contract worker for a few months. The contract employee works only for the duration of the contract, so this type of employment is only for a certain amount of time. On the other hand, a full-time employee is someone who works until he or she quits that job or until he or she gets laid off. There is no duration for full-time employees. Therefore, you should specify to the headhunter what kind of position you want from the beginning not to waste anyone’s time. Some prefer a full-time position with benefits but others may prefer to work only for a certain amount of time for special reasons.
Headhunters are useful for widening your job search because some jobs are not advertised and headhunters usually know these unadvertised jobs. Therefore, they can recommend you to these jobs as a potential candidate. This will save you time and energy, you may use elsewhere. You should also be honest about your skills and qualifications to the headhunter so s/he can refer you to the right positions. If you do not have the right skillset for a certain job, no matter how you present yourself, you will not get the offer. Therefore, know your skills very well.
Working with headhunters is also great if you want to keep your job search a secret. For example, you may be employed but want to change your job and start working in a different workplace, and don’t want to post your resume online or talk on the phone with potential recruiters. Then, it is best for you to work with a headhunter because they can provide you a level of confidentiality in your job search.