Why engaging with recruiters can unlock unexpected opportunities

Emily Tal our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 12 September 2023

In the past year, Hanover has witnessed significant hiring activity in the Nordics and Benelux regions. When compared to hires in the US and London, we've found there to be a considerably lower engagement rate when approaching the market.


This could be for a number of reasons: job security and satisfaction thrives and individuals often assume that there is no benefit in engaging with executive search firms; with recent market downturns have left redundancies fresh in people’s mind; and concerns about the antiquated ‘last in, first out’ policy still linger.


In this article, I'd like to highlight six reasons why you should always take that call from a recruiter. But before delving into those reasons, let's address some common concerns about who might be on the other end of the line.

Addressing the recruiter stereotype

There are a lot of misconceptions regarding recruiters. Some associate recruiters with pushy sales tactics, ‘ghosting’, and a relentless pursuit of commissions, often disregarding the candidate's true fit for a position. The typical image of a recruiter can be that of a transactional relationship builder, interested solely in filling roles quickly and moving on.


It's crucial to understand that the stereotype does not apply to all recruiters, especially those in the executive search field. In fact, many of these stereotypes stem from a lack of understanding of the difference between contingent recruitment and executive search. Contingent recruiters might be driven by filling positions quickly due to their commission-based structure. 


In contrast, executive search (sometimes known as retained search) centres on a consultative approach. At Hanover, for example, we engage deeply with both clients and candidates, ensuring that we understand the organisational culture, the role’s specific requirements, and candidates’ aspirations and abilities. Our goal is to create enduring matches that benefit both the organisation and the individual.


Ironically, in general, the more senior the role, the more engagement we see. Seasoned C-suite individuals have mastered the art of executive search relationships. Perhaps it is a tried and tested way to enhance your career?

6 reasons to take the call from a recruiter

1. Gain insider knowledge

An executive recruiter is often privy to information not available to the public. Engaging with them can provide you insights into industry trends, organisational cultures and hidden opportunities. Strategic introductions are not uncommon, as specialist recruiters often boast extensive networks that can prove invaluable to senior professionals.

2. Broaden your career horizon

Executive search professionals understand the market's complexities and can help you explore various career paths that you might not have considered. We are able to provide personalised guidance and a long-term perspective on career growth.

3. Profit from insights into compensation packages

Recruiters have extensive knowledge about what other companies are offering. We can help you understand and benchmark where you are in terms of benefits and responsibilities.

4. Benefit from a bespoke approach

Executive search professionals tailor their approach to match talented individuals with organisations so that both parties benefit. Opportunities, especially at a senior level, are not one-size-fits all and we work in partnership with clients and candidates to account for that.

5. Build lasting relationships

It's about more than just presenting potential candidates with the role in play. Even if the particular position mentioned isn’t a perfect fit, make the introduction for the next opportunity. Searches can be fluid too. I have known clients to meet an exceptional individual and carve out a bespoke role for them alongside the planned hire.

6. Boost your confidence

A conversation with a recruiter can serve as valuable interview practice and enhance your confidence in your professional standing. Building a relationship with a recruiter can lead to personalised career advice, CV improvements and enhanced interview techniques.


Bonus tip

Searches often begin with a mapping phase, after which a shortlist is submitted of the top candidates in the market. Engaging with recruiters sooner rather than later gives you a competitive advantage. 


Taking a call from a recruiter is not a waste of time. It could be the perfect chance to explore new opportunities or to understand where you stand in your career. Take the call - you never know what you may discover.

The executive search process at Hanover

At Hanover, we pride ourselves on our in-depth, consultative approach. We work closely with candidates and clients, focusing on the alignment of goals, culture and opportunities. Our commitment to DE&I ensures that we are not just filling a position, but building long-term relationships and creating value for both our candidates and our clients.


While it may feel comfortable and secure in your current position, opening up to recruiters could unlock doors you never even knew were there. By taking the call, you engage in a process that’s completely confidential, informative, and potentially life-changing - and it only takes 10 minutes of your time. 

Do you know a senior professional who would benefit from reading this article? Please share it with them, and feel free to get in touch with me directly if you’d like to understand more about how I might be able to help you.

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