Retained Search

A retained search fee is structured differently to the more common contingency search, to enable the recruitment consultant to dedicate more resources, time and quality of service whilst filling the position.


The fee is split into thirds, which are paid at the following stages; 


Stage 1 – The first third is due at the beginning, when the Employer & Recruitment Consultant agree to work the vacancy on a retained assignment basis. This works as a guarantee & enables the consultant to concentrate their time & effort on this prioritised position. 
Stage 2 - The second third is due when the employer has a shortlist of candidates that they would like to interview for the position. 
Stage 3 – The third and final payment is due upon completion of the assignment, when the selected candidate has started employment with the employer.


Retained is our recommended approach to search. Why?

  • Mutual Level of Commitment - A retained search goes well beyond the typical contingency effort. Industry average suggests that you get 5 times the amount of man hours spent on your vacancy compared to a standard contingency search. This time allows our recruiter to cover the entire marketplace and consider many qualified candidates. Obviously, we need a client's committed support to justify that kind of effort. 
  • Quality and Quantity of Results - A retained program allows us the time to locate the best available candidates in the marketplace instead of referring the first qualified person we find. This insures you get the maximum performance capability for your money and the person who best suits your opportunity. 
  • Cost Effectiveness - Most of our clients are surprised to learn that retained search usually costs no more than contingency - even with expenses. The reason is increased cost effectiveness for us. To date our successful completion rate for retainers has been over 95% as compared to an industry average of 10% on contingency. 
  • Speed- Many people think a retained search takes longer to complete. Certainly at very high management levels this can be true. However, most middle to upper-middle management searches take 1-3 months no matter how they are conducted. Most retained recruiters work with no more than 4-6 assignments simultaneously and with a higher level of research and administrative support. This allows us to be as timely as their contingency counterparts – if not quicker. 
  • Client Delineation - You are our client, not the individual. We discuss only your vacancy with the candidate; not the multitude of positions we have available. This ensures the candidate is not distracted by other opportunities and you do not get involved in a bidding war.
  • Transparency and Accountability – Our clients are presented with a market report, confidential assessment report and the shortlisted candidate details.