Headhunters: MatchMaking in the Labor Market

Headhunters: MatchMaking in the Labor Market

by William Finlay, James E. Coverdill
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0801473799

ISBN-13: 9780801473791

Pub. Date: 01/28/2007

Publisher: Cornell University Press

Headhunters—third-party agents paid a fee by companies for locating job candidates—perform a unique sales role. The product they sell is people, matching candidates with jobs and companies with candidates. Headhunters affect the professional lives of thousands of employees every day, and their work has a profound, though hidden, effect on the employment

Overview

Headhunters—third-party agents paid a fee by companies for locating job candidates—perform a unique sales role. The product they sell is people, matching candidates with jobs and companies with candidates. Headhunters affect the professional lives of thousands of employees every day, and their work has a profound, though hidden, effect on the employment picture in the United States. William Finlay and James E. Coverdill draw on interviews with and observations of headhunters and on analysis of headhunting training seminars, lectures, industry newsletters, and a mail survey of headhunting firms. The result is a frank and sometimes unsettling portrait of the aims, attitudes, and tactics of practitioners.

The payment of fees has shifted from candidates to employers, and recruiters now find people to fit jobs rather than the other way around. Finlay and Coverdill address what they feel is a serious lack of research about the work headhunters do and how they do it. Their book is built around three major questions: What advantages do employers derive from using third-party agents to handle candidate search and recruitment? How are headhunters able to accomplish the double sale ("selling" candidates to employers and employers to candidates)? What criteria do headhunters use for selecting candidates?

In the process, Finlay and Coverdill link their findings to larger issues of institutional and historical context, revealing the economic and political reasons clients use headhunters, demonstrating how headhunters manipulate clients and candidates, and assessing the impact of headhunters' actions on hiring decisions.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780801473791
Publisher:
Cornell University Press
Publication date:
01/28/2007
Edition description:
REV
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments     vii
What Headhunters Do: The Business of Finding People for Jobs     1
Theoretical Issues: The Double Sale, the Tertius Gaudens, and the Visible Hands     24
Playing the Search Game: The Economics and Politics of Recruitment     37
Managing Risk by Managing Clients     59
Ruses, Pitches, and Wounds: The Construction of Job Candidates     88
Finding the Right Person for the Job: Specs, Hot Buttons, and Chemistry     112
Fitting the Right Person to the Job: The Dynamics of Third-Party Impression Management     141
From Bridges to Buffers: Closing the Double Sale     165
Conclusion     181
Afterword: Practical Advice for Dealing with Headhunters     191
References     203
Index     211

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