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The transition from contingent to embedded recruitment.

Updated: Dec 6, 2021

Ever thought about moving into embedded recruitment, but are unsure if it's the right move to make? Take a look at look at one of our hubbers personal experience when it comes to making the switch from contingent to embedded.


"As to anything in life there are pros and cons. For the last few years, my time was spent in a classical recruitment agency which was a fast paced, target driven, competitive, dog eat dog world. In my opinion, I believe that this kind of environment is not for everyone, although you’ll be almost guaranteed to take something away from the whole experience... whether it’s getting a thicker skin or positively knowing you’ve tried recruitment and you can tick it off your ‘what job do I want’ list.


Primarily the main aim within classical recruitment agencies is to make as much money for

your company and yourself in a short period of time. Although, with this being your main

objective comes high pressure, time constraints, stress and the occasional breakdown. On

the other hand, for the multiple clients you are managing it’s an expensive short term fix to

their biggest problem - internal recruitment.



Typically, as classical recruitment companies work on multiple projects at once, their time is

spread quite thin, meaning they simply do not have the means to fully understand the

internal dynamics, culture, values their clients have to offer. Although, on the other hand this

method of recruitment is still beneficial to the client as agency recruiters have a very

impressive pre-existing network, good sector knowledge to identify the best candidates and

the ability to negotiate salaries, overall saving the employers a considerable amount of time

but not money.


More recently, I decided to try a new form of recruitment called ‘embedded’ which is where I

focus on one client at a time and fully immerse myself into their company brand and become

part of their internal HR team. This type of recruitment is a little more well rounded compared

to a classical agency. Working for a classical recruitment agency, you focus solely on hiring

the perfect candidate as quickly as possible. Whereas, when working for an embedded

partner, you not only focus on hiring but also analysing the pre-existing processes and

advising strategic changes which will have a positive effect not only for the short but also the

medium and long term - effectively allowing you to leave a footprint in your clients company.

This method allows you to completely understand in detail; the structure, the culture, and

core values. This really helps when answering those tricky questions from a candidate as it

helps to give a more well informed answer. Finally, as an embedded partner you have a

much more streamlined communication to the stakeholders which enables you to get quicker

and more honest feedback - this is extremely beneficial since you now are heavily involved

in the internal interviewing processes. In short, embedded recruitment will still cut wasted

time and ultimately fulfill your hiring needs with the extra added benefit of being a more

affordable, tailored way to scale your company for the long term.


Overall, from my personal perspective, I feel that working as an embedded partner is all of

the enjoyable parts from my previous role. I now have a much more balanced work / life

schedule and feel I have more time with one client to do my role to the best of my ability.

From a client’s perspective, I think that it highly depends on which route they would prefer to

go, however, by using an embedded partner you not only fulfill your recruitment needs but

also end up with a long term strategy that has been left by your embedded partner when you

choose to recruit again in future for only a fraction of the cost."

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