It doesn't happen very often.  This is the second blatant case I have seen in over 5 years, and maybe twice in the previous 9.  I talked to a candidate yesterday and had a thorough fantastic wonderful discussion. I covered all the points all the time and I even tamped back my growing eager anticipation to be more thorough.  I probed, asked and positioned, I listened.

I did it old school, by the book.  When I asked “Have you heard of or applied to any companies with this type of position in this geographic location?” I held my breath. His answer made me smile.  ”No, I have not.”

I shared with him in confidence the name of my client.  He had not heard of this company.  My fist silently shot into the air.”YES!”  A righteous presentation is in the works.

Only not.  

Another recruiter had seen his resume and WITHOUT TALKING TO HIM had entered his resume into the client’s database. Really?  We still do this?

After we figured out what happened, he did send an email to HR indicating that he wanted me to represent him (copying me) and indicating that he had not discussed this position with anyone else.  (Small victory, but significant)  His enthusiasm has ebbed.  I am a little sick to my stomach.  I sent an email (polite) to HR asking if they wanted their vendors to actually talk to candidates before presenting - it does seem the minimum requirement - or at least to share the name of the company.  I haven’t heard back.

I know I probably will not win this scenario.  But I want to vent.  I want to scream. I want to rage to teh recruiting gods. I’m not. It is not helpful to do those things.  I have more productive things to do.  But I do I hate this particular bad behavior and the policies that drive it most of all.  I am appalled that “first in, wins”  still seems to rule the day even when it drives shoddy, outrageously bad behavior. I think this kind of crap ought to get firms blackballed.  I am not in charge, of course.  My oughts carry little weight.

I have other candidates in the running. But this one was AWESOME.  Part of the game.

After a mostly sleepless night I woke up with this running in my head:    “I will do what I can.  I did what I could. It will be what it is, regardless of should.” So, a demented Dr. Seuss has taken up residence in my head.  It is, of course good advice, like all Dr. Seuss sayings.

Any thoughts, you guys?  Tell me tales of the bad.  

And yes, I know A-list clients don't do these things. Not all my clients are A-listers.  I suppose I have a high tolerance for a certain kind of beatings.  

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That is me I have also done...We actually define what a presented candidate is in our contracts.  Aside from that I think a talk with your hiring contact would be in order to establish future understandings and perhaps persuade them to see your side.  If it is just a race to send names tell them then well heck, get ready for the onslaught!   You should also inform your candidate what has happened and they may become and advocate for you.  

Oh the candidate actually sent an email to HR saying he had not talked ot anyone else and that he wanted me to represent him.  He copied me.  It was a nice email.  Small victory. I am not sure he gets to choose.  :-/

My contract denotes what I do, but I can't control what other people do and this is a situation (I hate these) where candidates are entered into a client ATS.

Crazymaking.  Candidates and clients and recruiters all need to step up and call out bad behavior.  But so often we don't.

As I was reading this Lisa - I was ready for your client to say "We just interviewed him Tuesday - and passed."


I've heard this recently after a full "You swear you've never, ever, EVER heard of, or been introduced or considered in any by this company?" conversation.


This sucks.  Sorry.  Hang in there friend!

Lisa- can I add that I love the Rocky Horror reference? Hope you're doing well and the best to you in 2013. 

That really sucks.  One of the questions I ask is are you working with any other recruiters and have you been presented or sent out your resume in the last 6 months?  Than I hold my breath hoping they do not mention my client firm.  If the answer is no I say great I am excited to move forward...I still at this point have not revealed who the client is.  I tell them they still have control over their resume and after I do the blind presentation to the client and get positive feedback I will at that point tell them who the client is and do I still have permission to send over their resume.  I have only had a couple of times where after hearing who the client was the candidate declined for his resume to be sent over.


Several options to try and take a partial save.
1. Find out who the other recruiter is. Call them and discuss that the candidate is interested in the company but has indicated he did not give them permission to send his resume has so indicated to HR. rather than knock the candidate out would they agree to split the fee if he is interviewed and hired rather than get the company in a tangle with two recruiters so they drop the candidate completely. If the other recruiter is not willing or gets hostile....

2. Call HR suggest that rather than lose the candidate if they are interested in speaking with him that they move forward with an interview, if hired the company will split the fee. If they are not willing to consider that option.

3. If the candidate is willing, tell him not to respond if the other recruiter tries to set up an interview. Suggest that he wait a week or so then pick up the phone, call HR, tell them he is interested in speaking with them,but he does not want to get in a tangle with two recruiters. If they are interested he would like to interview and perhaps they might consider splitting the fee since he talked with one recruiter but understands that another recruiter entered his resume without his knowledge.

At this point you don't have a problem until the candidate is interviewed, offered and hired. If you can get him interviewed and they want to hire he may have more leverage to make it part of the deal that the fee be split. If he declines to interview through the other firm. Notifies them that they are not authorized to represent him or send his resume to anyone nor have they ever been you might be able to copy the company on his letter and leave it up to them. If he sent his resume to the other recruiter at any time you are probably toast. If they picked it up off the net without his knowledge it may be worth trying to fight it. A lot depends on your relationship with the company but many will agree to splt a fee in a situation where they want the candidate.

You are right on line with my playbook, Sandra. 

We'll see what transpires.  A cool head can often salvage a partial fee.  Been awhile since I had to do this, and I hate it. So many companies just don't understand how having a policy of "first in, wins" drives less than optimal behavior. Perhaps I'll download every resume I can find off the internet into their database and wait to see who they like and then call them.  Okay, I'd never do that, not really. But that is the behavior that policy rewards and shapes.  Day 3 since this started and the other agency has not yet talked to the candidate.

Kind of funny.

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