What is Staffing and Recruiting?

When it comes to looking for your first job after graduation, you’ve probably heard about networking, maximizing LinkedIn, writing cover letters and dogged consistency. But what about staffing and recruiting firms? They are one of the lesser known, but most effective tools for upcoming and recent graduates in their job search.

What is it?

Staffing and recruiting firms have the same goals: to connect companies with top talent, and candidates with job opportunities.

How does it work?

Companies use staffing and recruiting firms to help them fill open positions and overcome hiring challenges. Some organizations use staffing firms to identify temporary workers for specific projects or contracts, while others will use recruiting firms to identify direct hire, permanent talent for their teams. Firms act as a conduit to connect qualified candidates with jobs.

Why work with a staffing or recruiting firm?

Not only are firms recruiting for hundreds of open roles at a time, and sharing the most relevant with you, they are also coaching along the way. Recruiters offer free resume advice, career consultation, discuss salary expectations and provide interview tips and feedback. It is in their best interest to help their candidates find jobs, land a job for their candidate, so they will do everything in their power to help make it happen. Recruiters are job seekers’ best advocates. They have insider knowledge about the hiring companies, direct lines of communication with hiring managers and can fight for their candidates because they understand the needs of both parties.

Do I have to pay?

Staffing and recruiting services are usually free for job seekers; the hiring company is charged for using the firm’s services. Some companies do not pay the firm until the role has been filled, which further incentives the firm to find the right candidate, quickly.

How do I choose a firm that’s right for me?

There are hundreds of staffing and recruiting firms out there. It is normal, and encouraged, to work with a few. As a job seeker, capitalize on as many resources as possible to benefit your search. Here are a few questions to consider when deciding which firms to work with:

Am I looking for permanent or temporary job opportunities?

Determine whether you are looking for a permanent or temporary position. Some firms only recruit for temporary needs while others are exclusively full-time, direct hire recruiting.

Don’t discount temporary staffing firms, even if your end goal is to find a permanent position. Temporary jobs are an excellent way to get a foot in the door and build valuable workplace experience for your resume.

What industry am I interested in?

When looking for a job in veterinary services, working with a firm that specializes in the manufacturing industry isn’t going to get you anywhere. Either look for a firm that specializes in your industry or choose an “industry agnostic” firm.

Is there a practice area I’m after?

Check out the website to see what types of roles they offer, and the career levels they cater to. Firms that exclusively head hunt technology executives would not be a great fit when looking for an entry-level marketing position.

Don’t discredit a firm if they don’t have a perfect title match listed on their website. There may be some behind-the-scenes opportunities, and remember they are constantly getting more positions to recruit for.

Where am I located? Where do I want to be located?

Just as some firms specialize in one industry area, some firms specialize in one geographic area. Find a firm that either works nationally or is local to your area.

What do other people say about this firm?

Take reviews with a grain of salt. Staffing and recruiting firms interview tens of thousands of people each year, and can’t help everyone, which leads to some negative reviews.

Rather than looking at sites like Glassdoor, Yelp or Google Reviews, find out whether the firm has any awards from credible organizations that speak to their quality. Awards honoring the company’s culture, training program or growth can all reveal the true strengths of the firm.


LaSalle Network is a national staffing and recruiting firm with expertise in dozens of practice areas. Our recruiters would love to partner with you in your job search! Contact us today to find out if we’re the right firm for you.

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