Exposing the Weak Recruitment Agencies: 2 more

Two more firms have proven their mettle this week (i.e.: think twice before engaging them).

As always, it’s nothing personal. If a recruitment agent is doing a job that I and others think weak, but managed to persuade an employer to pay them to do it – and to accept that standard – then all power to them; they’re just making a living. No employer is ever “required” to use an agent, and they have many to choose from; they have no excuse for not insisting on high standards. Shame on the employers for screwing-up their own employee-base like this.

See here for more examples:

  1. Lorien
  2. Aardvark Swift


First up, we have Ravello/Enigma, with two big faux pas.

1. You didn’t even bother to read my profile before you approached me. Hmm.

I double-checked. Yep, it’s still there, in black and white (and caps lock):

“NOTE CAREFULLY! * I only add people I actually know.”

2. You cold-contacted me with a job, and then refused to tell me what the job is. Or who it’s for. Or, in fact, *ANY REASON* I might be interested.

Recruitment Agent:
“I have the following role for you:
Job type/s: 2 roles. 6 months fixed term contract or 1 year perm.
Salary: Wide open but depends on experience really.”

“What’s the actual role? I’m guessing this is iPhone related? My standard rate for iPhone development and consulting is X”

Recruitment Agent:
“The project details are top secret as my client advised me but it is an Iphone/Ipad related role. As stated before, salary depends on experience.”

WTF? What is this – MI6? The CIA?

I tried to think of an intelligent response. I failed. Maybe I’m supposed to be “intrigued” and start begging the Agent to give me some information? “Artificial scarcity” and all that?

Frankly, I have no idea. Just too weird.

Unique Selection

Second, we have Unique Selection, asking me to do their job for them gratis (the job that they get paid to do…).

1. How many times do you have to ask me to sell-out my network to you (which – as noted above – if you bothered to read my profile you’d see I’m not going to do) .. before you get the hint?
  1. “Also, could we connect on LinkedIn?”
  2. “In the meantime if we could connect on LInkedIn that would be great”

On the third attempt I relented and pointed the agent at my profile. The one they should have read to start with.

2. Why would I do your job for you? And, even if you were paying me to find you candidates, why on earth would I not hire those people myself?

“I wasn’t sure if you could help me but my client is looking for an perm iPhone/iPad App developer to join their team”

“I run an iPhone development team”

(basically: I couldn’t believe they were really that cheeky / dumb as to ask me to do their recruiting for them.)

“If you were to go perm, what would roughly be the base you would look for?”

“I’m probably not interested.”

“please feel free to pass my details to anyone you think could be interested.

Ah, yes, because those of us who actually “make things” have nothing better to do than offer ourselves up to be exploited so that recruitment agents can get a pay-cheque. Social security, eat your heart out…