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Nikkei
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Joined: January 11th, 2005, 5:02 pm

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 5th, 2009, 8:37 pm

Hello:I have a question for Dominic. If a company makes a job posting publicly available, is it any better to apply via HH than directly? I recently spoke with my HH who was late in the sense that I applied for this position before he suggested it.He claimed that now I am competing against 3000 other applicants whereas if I had applied through him(for the same position) I would've gotten more "attention". When I asked why they made the opening publicin the first place if they relied so heavily on his services, he had nothing to say.I take it HH's job is to get us "internal" openings that are never made public, so as soon as I can find it anywhere online, I should apply directly. Please correct me if I'm wrong.Thanks,Nikkei
 
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twofish
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Joined: February 18th, 2005, 6:51 pm

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 5th, 2009, 11:09 pm

Quote If a company makes a job posting publicly available, is it any better to apply via HH than directly?For a large company, it's much better to apply through a headhunter. One thing that the HH can and will do is to make sure that your resume doesn't get lost. For a small company (say 20 people), it probably doesn't matter.QuoteHe claimed that now I am competing against 3000 other applicants whereas if I had applied through him(for the same position) I would've gotten more "attention".This probably isn't true. One of the main things that a HH does is to make sure your resume doesn't disappear into a black hole. A lot of companies have these tremendously hideous data base systems which are totally unusable.QuoteI take it HH's job is to get us "internal" openings that are never made public, so as soon as I can find it anywhereonline, I should apply directly. The main job of a HH is to make sure that a human being (any human being) actually sees the resume and says yes or no. If you apply online, you have know idea if that application is just getting tossed into a black hole, which is usually pretty close to the case. Also if the HH is any good, they can usually find out what the *real* job requirements are, since I've never seen an online public posting that really provides any useful information on what the job is about.The thing that HH's will often imply is that they have some special connection with the employer, which is very rarely the case.
 
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Nikkei
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Posts: 208
Joined: January 11th, 2005, 5:02 pm

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 5th, 2009, 11:16 pm

In any case, I don't see any benefit in waiting for HH because he is very slow.Suppose that he makes the probability of success 5 times as large, but I still can apply to 10 places myself vs. 1 through him.Therefore, every time I hear from a hh that I'm doing myself a favor by not applyingdirectly I tend to think that he simply hedges his interests at my expense.
 
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quantspot
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Joined: February 4th, 2009, 2:48 am

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 6th, 2009, 12:48 am

Most hiring firms first hire HH to find right candidate, if fails, then make a job posting publicly availableIn your case, I would suggest that just kick off the HH and apply yourself if you could make sure that the job is posted by the company and not by the aggency
 
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twofish
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Joined: February 18th, 2005, 6:51 pm

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 6th, 2009, 3:34 am

QuoteOriginally posted by: NikkeiIn any case, I don't see any benefit in waiting for HH because he is very slow.If you are a newbie, you should be working with a large number of headhunters rather than one.QuoteSuppose that he makes the probability of success 5 times as large, but I still can apply to 10 places myself vs. 1 through him.If the resume isn't been looked at by a human being, then your odds of getting the job are zero, and the odds that an online job submission will not go to a human being are quite high.QuoteTherefore, every time I hear from a hh that I'm doing myself a favor by not applying directly I tend to think that he simply hedges his interests at my expense.He's obviously saying things that are in his interests, but the employment infrastructure in most large firms is so bad, that I don't see how applying directly through an online form can possibly be in your interests. The only time I'd consider applying direct is if you get the name of a human being at a company. This is why networking is useful. If you know someone in the company, you don't need them to recommend you or help you get a position. All you need to do is for them to tell you the name of a human being that you can send a resume to.
 
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Nikkei
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Posts: 208
Joined: January 11th, 2005, 5:02 pm

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 6th, 2009, 3:47 am

I work with many HHs, but they behave similarly.In some cases, application means sending my resume via email which probably meansit's looked at.Again, if the online application doesn't go to a "human being" (whatever it means), it's not clear why the companyposts it in the first place. My guess is that they just want to economize on the hh's fees and in that case they are bound to actually look through the online submissions. The fact that a hh doesn't want to send my resumeto a company after I already applied online also confirms that online submissions are looked at.
 
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phil451
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Joined: December 7th, 2007, 8:21 am

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 6th, 2009, 8:08 am

Head hunters live or die by placing people.Consequently, your best interest is their best interest.If they think they can place you they will work very hard to get you that first interviewYou have to think of the people who are doing the hiring, which i have done in previous roles.They do not have the time or the inclination to trawl through 100s of CVs. They rely on the headhunter to do the initial selection. Consequently, by a very simple Darwinian process, employers will work with headhunters who understand their business and only provide relevant CVs and those headhunters will survive while the hopeless ones join the ever lengthening job queue.Getting a decent job with prospects at an Investment Bank is not easy at the best times. You have to keep at it and at it. You also have to keep on at the headhunters and differentiate yourself to them as they see a lot of CVs. Once a headhunter starts to believe in you as a candidate then he will push you harder.Finally, head hunters aren't slow. It is the recruitment process at an IB which is slow. Almost painfully slow at times.Ultimately, it's your decision and you can choose to avoid the headhunter and use the online process. However, in the 25 years that i have worked in the City, i have never known someone get a job that way.
 
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twofish
Posts: 4944
Joined: February 18th, 2005, 6:51 pm

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 6th, 2009, 11:15 am

QuoteOriginally posted by: NikkeiI work with many HHs, but they behave similarly.In some cases, application means sending my resume via email which probably meansit's looked at.If it is an e-mail to a human being (jane.smith@bigib.com) with a phone number that you can call Jane Smith, then yes some human being is looking at it. If it is an e-mail resumes@bigib.com, then there is very large chance that it goes into a database that no one looks at. If you actually met Jane Smith at a conference, and talked to her for thirty seconds then it's even better.QuoteAgain, if the online application doesn't go to a "human being" (whatever it means), it's not clear why the companyposts it in the first place.Going to a human being means that some person actually reads the resume. As far as posting the position, there is a chance that its some internal HR requirement which some manager is following. Ideally, you want the resume to get to the manager that posted the job, which means that if Jane Smith is the manager, things are even better. If Jane Smith is someone in HR, then every step between you and the manager is another chance for your resume to get lost.Note at this point, it doesn't matter how good you are or what is in your resume. Getting a resume to someone that can act on it, is a non-trivial problem. If it was easy, then there wouldn't be a need for HH's.QuoteMy guess is that they just want to economize on the hh's fees and in that case they are bound to actually look through the online submissions.Are you guessing or do you know? HH fees are trivially unimportant in the grand scheme of things.QuoteThe fact that a hh doesn't want to send my resume to a company after I already applied online also confirms that online submissions are looked at.They might be looked at, after the HH sends a resume. One thing that HR databases are used for is tracking applications, and even then they don't always to a good job.
 
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twofish
Posts: 4944
Joined: February 18th, 2005, 6:51 pm

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 6th, 2009, 11:37 am

QuoteOriginally posted by: phil451Head hunters live or die by placing people.Consequently, your best interest is their best interest.It's not always the case. HH's get money by placing you with *their* job, but their job is not always the most suitable one for you. However, a lot of hiring involves just trivial logistical things, but trivial logistical things can keep you from getting a job.Incidentally, a HH is not the most effective way of finding a job. The most effective way of getting a job is to have a person you know on the inside. It's not that they can or will pull strings. It's that they will give you two crucial bits of information 1) what the job is and 2) what is being done with your resume. You don't even have to know them that well.QuoteThey do not have the time or the inclination to trawl through 100s of CVs. They rely on the headhunter to do the initial selection. Consequently, by a very simple Darwinian process, employers will work with headhunters who understand their business and only provide relevant CVs and those headhunters will survive while the hopeless ones join the ever lengthening job queue.And a lot of this "initial selection" is really silly stuff. For example, if you advertise a job calling for a common lisp programmer, you need to get rid of all of the resumes for people that have zero programming experience at all. Just isolating the resumes for people that have *any* common lisp programming experience will get rid of about 90% the resumes submitted, because when you post a job post online, you will get lots of spam. Also, the HH may have talked to someone that mentioned that they are looking for some common lisp programmer, which is probably not mentioned on the job ad. Most job ads are specifically designed to give as little information as possible about what the job actually involves and what the employer is looking for. That information is given face to face.QuoteGetting a decent job with prospects at an Investment Bank is not easy at the best times. You have to keep at it and at it. You also have to keep on at the headhunters and differentiate yourself to them as they see a lot of CVs. Once a headhunter starts to believe in you as a candidate then he will push you harder.You also have to send out a *LOT* of resumes. With my last job search, I ended up calling about 30 different HH's, and probably ended up sending my resume out to about a hundred. Looking for a job is a full time occupation. I should point out that in no case did I even get a first interview from an online application, and after I got hired I learned why. It's because no one reads them. QuoteFinally, head hunters aren't slow. It is the recruitment process at an IB which is slow. Almost painfully slow at times.There are ways of speeding it up. Once you have a job offer from one IB, other IB's can be amazing quick at acting to push the process. That's one reason to have multiple feelers going out. Once one person wants to hire you, then you end up in a bidding war, which is good for you.QuoteUltimately, it's your decision and you can choose to avoid the headhunter and use the online process. However, in the 25 years that i have worked in the City, i have never known someone get a job that way.Same here. I've not see a single person hired through an online application, and I've never reviewed a resume that got submitted online. I've known lots of people that got hired by mechanisms outside the HH process through either campus recruiting or personal introductions.
 
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Nikkei
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Posts: 208
Joined: January 11th, 2005, 5:02 pm

Applying myself VS via Headhunter

February 6th, 2009, 8:08 pm

Well, I got some interviews through an on-line application, both in 2007 when I was looking foran internship and this time, too. What happens is that I barely hear anything from my HHs,so I submit lots of online stuff myself in the meantime. If I see an open position and hear nothing from a HH about that company, what else am I supposed to do?Another solution may be to contact the HH and tell him about that posting so that I could get therethrough him. Do you think this could work?
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