Hiring Decisions: Recruiting Services / Direct Hire

In theory, hiring on your own is a good way to save money. In practice, discovering the best talent, establishing a consistent process, and finding the time to do it all can be a huge headache for companies without internal recruiting and HR teams. Recruiters are skilled professionals. Their expertise in finding talent means that you can expect better candidates, delivered faster, pre-screened and ready to interview. While not every candidate from an agency will be an exact match for your positions, the success rate should be high.

Use this approach when:

  • You need a permanent new employee with unique skill sets that are hard to find through traditional job postings.
  • You want to increase diversity within your candidate pool.
  • It’s necessary to find more and better candidates than you can generate on your own.

Keep in mind:

  • If the skill sets you need are different from the skill sets of your current employees, candidates may be hard to evaluate. You will need a plan to screen for these skills (or ask the agency to screen for you).
  • When working with a staffing or recruiting agency, most direct hire fees are flat, agreed to beforehand, and invoiced upon placement. Establish clarity on the fees before you start accepting candidates.
  • Agencies typically guarantee at least a partial refund in the first 60-90 days if a candidate does not work out, but you should confirm their policy beforehand.


There are a lot of industry terms in the recruiting and staffing world. If you want to learn more, refer to this glossary of recruiting terms that we’ve been building.

*This content was originally written as a guest post on Mac’s list, available here: https://www.macslist.org/for-employers/hiring-decisions-should-you-use-a-recruiter-or-staffing-agency-to-hire-new-employees