3 Ways Negotiating a Lower Rate with Search Firms Will Backfire

By: Tiffany Grosskreutz


When it comes to picking vendors, many companies rely on the “low price leader”.  This philosophy may work when you’re buying office supplies or coffee for the break room.  But when you’re looking for a vendor to help attract, hire and develop your most important asset, your people, making a decision solely on price may be more detrimental than you think.


The method of negotiating a super low rate with a contingent agency is not effective for these three reasons:

  1. You will not be a priority for the recruitment firm.

With today’s full employment epidemic, your search firm is probably up to their gills in job orders and needs to prioritize. It only makes sense for them to give precedence to their higher paying customers. This magical database they speak of, is likely bone dry by the time they get to working on your position. By that point, it is much easier to move on to the next position that they already have candidates for versus spending quality time on your open role. Further down the list your position goes…

  1. The best candidates will be shared with their better paying clients first

Let’s say the agency does come across an amazing candidate who checks all the right boxes for you AND for your competitor. Your competitor did not get “lucky” with a lower rate and they are willing to pay 25% of the salary, whereas you got a deal at 17%. Who do you think is going to get first dibs on that candidate?

  1. They will not be as invested in the quality of candidates.

It’s no secret that a lot of companies are hiring right now and the war on talent is very real. Contingent agencies’ main priority is pace, so they can fill a high volume of positions for that desirable contingent fee. It does not allow them to take the time to fully assess and interview the candidates or act as consultants on your behalf. They are likely not going to be very honest about red flags they come across because they are too busy throwing candidates at you until one of them sticks.

How do you avoid these issues, but still fill your position at a lower rate than most contingent firms? That’s simple, Titus.

Working with us you’ll get:

  • A dedicated recruiter working on your role for a guaranteed 12+ hours per week.
  • A standard rate along with all of our partners so there is no competition or prioritization.
  • A fully customized list of candidates who are the best in the marketplace sourced just for you.
  • A consultative approach with a robust interview portfolio, scientific tools, and weekly updates with progress, submittals, and real time marketplace insights.
  • Finally, a five-year average fill rate of 12%

What are you waiting for? Contact us today to learn more about how you can #PartnerWithTitus.

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