Is international recruiting something I should consider? I live in Seattle and place primarily in the Bay Area. I keep hearing about people making a killing placing in Europe, Asia and other international areas. I’m a sole proprietor and don’t have the advantage of a team to support me. Do you think this is a way to avoid getting hit when the U.S. economy takes another dive?
You never shared your niche or area of specialization in your question. I always advise that a client territory of 30 accounts is pretty much recession proof. This is comprised of 10 key accounts and 20 back-ups. The key accounts call you first, view you as a trusted advisor/consultant and hire multiple candidates from you throughout the year. The back-up accounts call you and others and probably view you as one of the vendors they utilize for top talent. However, they know who you are and the services you provide.
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The greatest error made by most recruiters is that 75% of their income is generated by five clients or less. If two or three of their clients stop hiring, they are at square one when it comes to client development; no one knows who they are or what services they provide.
I believe these 30 accounts should be in no more than five or six geographic locations. This allows you to develop a sphere of influence in these areas and you can multi-use the job orders and the candidates. I would state the exact advice to you when you are considering placing international candidates. You don’t want to place one candidate in Asia, another in Mexico and a third in Canada. It’s important to develop geographic influence in a few locations rather than spread yourself out so thin.
It’s important to remember that each country is governed by specific employment laws. If you are representing a candidate from one country and the job is in another, you must be well versed on employment laws.
Barbara J. Bruno, CPC, CTS