Howdy, G ’day, Guten Tag, Hola, Nie Hao! Recruitment is alive and well around the world. Clients have a real need for help with their company’s growth beyond domestic markets. A client’s extension of materials sourcing pipelines into overseas markets may drive a need for engineers or logistics talent. The expansion of sales and marketing efforts into developing parts of the world can create a need for marketing and sales talent. Regardless of the reason, clients have real needs that will be filled by you or someone else.
More and more the opportunity to fulfill on a client’s need can be met by engaging in a split placement arrangement. The benefits are real for both recruiter and client. The recruiter keeps competition out of the relationship and the client has a single point of contact, one person to hold accountable.
I would like to share a split placement story. The recruiters sharing these fees were in Pennsylvania and Hong Kong for positions in Shanghai and Zhejiang, China.
In a split network, firms work position openings cooperatively in order to speed the job fill. Once complete, they share the fee collected. Recruiters are sometimes slow to adopt new habits; maybe you know a few folks like this yourself. After years of hearing other recruiters say how easy it is to grow from a local-only business into a firm doing placements internationally, the Pennsylvania-based recruiter took up the challenge.
To start, the recruiter went to existing clients and explained that she could now accept international assignments because of the relationship she had with affiliates in more than 30 countries around the world. It did not start with live phone calls. Just email got the ball rolling. An email sent twice a year to key contacts within existing clients was enough to move this strategy forward. The letter expressed an interest in supporting client needs, not just locally, but anywhere in the world.
Sent twice a year for nearly 3 years, that note has produced a new search assignment each time!
The placements so far have been for “Supplier Development Engineers”, “Operations Managers” and “Sales Managers”. All of the placements to date have been great positions with good base salaries and good fee percentages.
The biggest challenge I heard from this recruiter is the need to understand global time zones for meeting times. We always suggest www.timeanddate.com. The other big issue is learning to convert currencies. We use Yahoo Finance, but I’m sure there are many good options.
As this now-global recruiter stated publicly, the thought of doing splits outside of the US was “foreign to me.” Most of the business done by her firm was within a 100-mile radius of the office in Pennsylvania before this new venture was instituted. In the last few years 5 splits, 4 in China and 1 in Germany have been completed by venturing beyond a comfort zone. These splits have made cocktails parties much more exciting for this recruiter…they open some eyes to what someone can do working from a home office in a business that employers, job boards and LinkedIn all say is dead and dying.