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“Good is not good where better is expected.” -– Thomas Fuller
BCL Legal is increasingly unique in pursuing a contingent recruitment only model. At a time when many of our competitors are turning to un-mandated headhunting to secure candidates, we are increasing our investment in more traditional advertising methods. As a direct result of this we register more new candidates than any other legal recruitment business.
The feedback we have from candidates is that the consistent and unsolicited contact that they get from other recruiters on LinkedIn or the telephone is actively putting them off working with those recruiters. This trend is particularly worrying because most of the perpetrators have signed agreements with firms where they specifically commit to not headhunting candidates from firms. Yes that’s right, the recruiter that has just made an unsolicited approach to you on LinkedIn (or on the telephone) and tried to talk you into being put forward for a position has probably signed an agreement with your employer, promising not to do such things.
I think everyone can agree that those recruiters are not the ones to work with!! As a solicitor are you genuinely willing to trust your career to a legal recruitment business that is actively lying to your current employers? As a recruitment manager at a law firm, when a leading “contingent recruiter” starts talking to you about headhunting – does that not cause you to question your future relationship with them? Personally I would be running a mile!
Increasingly we are getting reports from clients who are taking time out of their schedules to interview a person who “on paper” looks like the perfect candidate, only to discover that the candidate doesn’t really want the job. The candidate has been tapped up in an un-mandated headhunt and talked into going for a coffee/ interview on the off chance that the client law firm might offer them £10k more than their current salary. We have a phenomenal in-house team at BCL Legal. It is likely that we know the five year PQE solicitor with the stellar background that has just been talked into attending an interview. We’ve spoken to them about what they are genuinely looking for and we’ve decided against pushing the role on them, because it is a complete waste of time for all parties. Every candidate that BCL Legal forwards for a position is genuinely interested in that position.
So we are a recruitment consultancy that does exactly what we say we are going to do. We don’t conduct un-mandated head hunting. We don’t mislead our clients and candidates. Simply put we take the trouble to get to know what our clients and candidates are looking for, then attempt to provide the closest match.
At BCL Legal we have some of the highest personal billing targets of any recruitment company in Birmingham. The fact that we have the biggest and most successful private practice recruitment team in the city isn’t down to “bums on seats” it is because we offer a consistent service where we do what we say we are going to do. Our consultants hit and exceed their targets often by a long, long way. This is born out by the fact that we have preferred supplier relationships with and have placed candidates at every single leading law firm in the West and East Midlands. For the vast majority of those firms we are their number 1 or 2 supplier of fee earning staff, every year.
Over the last 12 months we have seen a couple of previously very well respected recruiters completely fall off the radar in Birmingham (in part at least) because of illicit activity. It is inconceivable that more will not do so in the next 12 months. Make sure that you are building relationships with recruiters who are going to continue to lead the market.
Ask the people that tap you up on LinkedIn whether they have preferred supplier agreements with your firm! Report them to your recruitment/ HR teams. This is the only way to stop the behaviour.
Nicholas Fear – 0121 237 5612
Manager – Private Practice