Would You Pay Someone To Find You Your Next Job?

In the UK and Europe you can buy expertise, counselling, advice or assistance for just about anything, legally. If you want to buy a house but can’t be bothered looking, hire a house hunter. If you want to invest all your ill-gotten appearance fees (Tony Blair) hire an investment banker. If you want to book a holiday hire a Concierge service. But if you want to find your next job, guess what. You can’t hire a professional job finder! Why not?

If you were recommended by a trusted associate or family member to someone who had a track record of successfully finding people their next job including the coaching, advising, training and positioning of your skills and experience would you pay for those services?

What if they provided their services on an initial retainer fee which for example covered your initial consultation, all CV / Resume reviews and preparation costs, interview coaching, career counselling, job search advice and the development of job search strategy personally devised for you. Then you paid a further fee based upon success only if the individual actually introduced you to your next employer?

There are of course a multitude of organisations and individuals who provide all of the above specified services. But none of them can legally charge you for actually finding you a job. They can charge the employer / hiring company, but they are legally restricted from charging you.

Now I don’t know about you, but I think this is ridiculous. As an adult you can buy anything and everything on credit, you can enter into lifelong financial commitments, you can risk your home and your family’s well being to some fancy talking investment advisor authorised by the FSA who still turns out to be a Madoff style Ponzi scheme, you can buy dreadful cosmetic implants from authorised and approved surgeons and even a wife from overseas. But you can’t pay someone to increase your chances of finding you a job!

Okay, I understand that the law is this way to stop people being exploited. In many ways it is to stop vulnerable or often disoriented people (and unexpected redundancy can and often does really knock people sideways) from being taken advantage of by less ethical unscrupulous con men and fraudsters. But consider this for a moment. If you lose your job and struggle to find a new one, there is very unfortunately a massive potential disaster looming. Having a job is probably the most important thing in your life after your partner (okay, this may debatable) and your family. For many people it underlines their status, their personality and their standing in their community or even their social circle.

How many of us have met people who lost their job first only for it to escalate into a full-blown personal crisis. It begins with a slight tightening of the belt, the kids can’t go on that school trip, the gym membership gets cancelled, the credit cards get cut up, one of the cars has to go, the holiday to Tenerife gets held over for a year, the new kitchen goes on hold. The pressure, the personal stress and the anxiety build with every passing day.

The financial implications are only the beginning. Personal relationships begin to suffer, you have to swallow your pride and ask friends and family for help in finding work. You walk into your local and people begin to avoid you, or offer what can be hollow comfort. Family issues kick in as one partner feels they are taking all the strain, you aren’t doing enough or are not doing it right. Personally you begin to feel frustrated and angry and fear that you are falling into a rut.

How many people reading this post have either experienced these things personally first hand or know someone who has?

So we are agreed then that a job is immensely important to us. It often makes us who we are, it provides purpose and it provides the means and the financial stability to school our children the way we want and it enables us to socialise the way we like and to live where we want.

So why can’t you seek and pay for professional help? This Government has spent literally millions of £’s on Career Counsellors, Back to Work Advisors and Skills Teaching to help people find work more effectively. Yet none of it actually works. The vast majority of assistance provided by the public sector and welfare or related services is time locked or has restrictions on it. You have to meet certain age criteria, fall into a certain demographic or have specific issues before anyone can speak to you. When people joke about preferential treatment for ex-offenders, drug addicts or the systematically unemployed, it isn’t funny. It’s true. Try being a normal everyday citizen of the UK who loses their job after 7yrs with the same employer. The Job Centre+ people are primarily focused on making sure that you don’t get any benefits until you have exhausted all your resources, are on the verge of defaulting on your mortgage and facing a custodial sentence for non-payment of council tax.

So why don’t they issue a licence scheme for recruiters and enable them to work directly with Job Seekers in a whole new way?

Imagine if you had your very own recruitment consultant, one who focused on you first and foremost, who explored every single opportunity to find you a potential job vacancy and then made every possible effort to ensure that you nailed it at interview. Imagine a recruiter who was paid by you the job seeker and not the hiring company. You pull the strings, you lay out your demands, you work collaboratively to maximise every resource. The Recruiter reports into you daily or weekly, they provide a working document of activity undertaken. They do all the research, the networking, the cold calling and the emailing for you. Effectively their job is to find you a new job first and foremost.

How much would you be willing to pay and on what terms? Would you for example pay an initial up-front retainer of £2,500 to buy exclusive time, to buy the search strategy, the coaching and resume re-writing and everything? If the recruiter then successfully sourced and secured you a position would you agree to pay a remaining balance for example 3 – 6 months later of £7,500? If you earn £50,000 per annum, for every month you are out of work you are losing c£4,000+.

I’m just throwing ideas around here. There is a huge disconnect at the moment between Job Seekers and Recruiters. Much of this is simply because Recruiters are pressured by their actual employer and their clients the hiring companies. They simply don’t have the time to work one on one with Job Seekers or to work with them in a collaborative manner. Many do try to assist and help as many people as they can, many spend much of their free time writing up CV’s  / Resume’s / Covering Letters for their friends and family. Many spend time coaching or counselling people about interview technique. But this is all on an ad-hoc basis and 99% of the time is done pro-bono.

It would have to be heavily weighted towards successful placement. There would have to be a Licence element to ensure that only respectable, legally operating and experienced recruiters were allowed to engage in the activity. But could it work? Would it offer a different or alternative means to those Job Seekers who maybe don’t have the time, don’t have the knowledge or simply don’t want to take a chance of not finding another job quickly?

What are your thoughts? How could it be made to work? Would you participate?

6 thoughts on “Would You Pay Someone To Find You Your Next Job?

  1. Emad Al-Obaidi (MBA), Eng

    Yes, I believe this service worth to been paid, we can find now many doing such services in other industry, the fees should be fixed and acceptable and they should fix some conditions to fix the rights of each part.


    1. Darren Ledger Post author

      Hi Emad,

      Many thanks for responding to my post. I agree, as long as there are some protective mechanisms in place to prevent people in need, getting exploited it seems like a logical idea.



  2. BoredWhiteCollarWorker

    Hi Darren,

    Interesting, I was just having a quick look to see if these kinds of services existed as to me there is such a huge miss-mash of jobsites and recruitment companies that I think the whole industry actually makes it very difficult for people to find jobs because there are so many variables. For instance some companies will only advertise jobs on their websites, others will use lots of job boards, others maybe one and then of course throw in the mix of companies that use a select few recruitment firms and perhaps don’t advertise at all, then what the recruitment firms do all results in you (the job seeker) having to screen on-mass phone calls for jobs you’re not interested in, trawl hundreds of jobsites and thousands of jobs, company websites and contact as many recruitment companies as you can, a large proportion of which will simply try to shoe horn you into a position to fill a role to get their commission payment.

    From personal experience, I think finding a job can be more stressful than moving house especially when you have the added pressure of paying the bills (if you’ve been made redundant, which is more common in this economic climate) the constant confidence knocks as you get declined for interview or don’t secure the job time and time again it is very easy to see your world fall apart around you and it becomes a job in itself for you just to hold yourself and others around you together.

    To me a low cost fixed rate service (lower than you stated) charged to people if they secure a job you found for them with extra income from more traditional revenues like advertising and making your database of people available to recruitment firms and also offering a reverse traditional service of providing CV’s to companies who give you specifications of the kind of people they are looking for and charging them if they hire someone provides a full 360 service of getting that person a job. To me interview training or CV writing is a value added service which would need charging upfront. In the long run doing this would work to your advantage as the person is more likely to secure a job you find for them. Therefore you could build that into the service and charges by slightly discounting the final fee if extra services are taken and paid for, but to me the requirement to not pay anything upfront and only in the case of that person finding a job would be the key element to making something like this successful.
    The other major issue is of course companies not accepting approaches by recruitment companies and therefore having some way of knowing the person got the job you put in front of them and ensuring you are paid by them.
    And just to explain, I believe this could be done much more cheaply than you mentioned because there is technology out there that you can use to trawl all the job boards, newspapers and company websites to find positions making the leg work of finding suitable positions much easier and therefore you could provide the service very efficiently with minimal operational costs and provide it to more people, I hate to say it, but “sell it cheap and pile it high”. The software is also cheaper than the fee you mentioned and there is nothing stopping people going and buying that software themselves, so would make sense to ensure you are cheaper.


  3. David

    I think there is an obvious opportunity here to provide a genuine, personalised pro-active, initial fee/success based service to assist candidates to find jobs (as opposed to helping client companies fill vacancies). Maybe some lateral thinking is required to get around the legal issues to enable people to be treated and assisted as mature adults and not unnecessarily regulated to protect them, unlike numerous other ares of life previously mentioned. Does anyone know where the precise details of the regulation can be found? Thanks, David. P.S. I’d be interested if anyone here has any thoughts on a way to reframe the service to enable it to be provided legally.


  4. 7707 northaven For rent

    Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging on
    websites I stumbleupon on a daily basis. It’s always useful to read through content from other writers and practice a little something from their web sites.



All Donations (comments) appreciated if constructive

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s