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One New York-based solo recruiter offered his client a contracting solution in January 2014, and that decision has certainly paid off. His first placement through FoxHire, LLC. (FH) has netted the recruiter $101,047. Even better? The candidate is still working, so the recruiter is still making money. For the average recruiter commanding a one-time 25% fee on a direct hire placement, those earnings would require placing a $404,000+/year candidate.

How did he do it, and what wisdom can he offer to other recruiters? We asked him to answer those very questions.

What were the circumstances of your contract placement?
The client was a large corporation that needed a specialized person to fit a very specific role. The candidate was not easy to find, and that rarity benefitted me. I spent the majority of my career getting to know this industry and building relationships within it, so I was uniquely suited to search for this particular candidate.

How much experience do you have with contract staffing, and how did you come to use FH as your back-office?
I worked in contract staffing throughout most of my career with large staffing corporations, so I had a solid base of knowledge when I eventually went off on my own. Because I had experience with contract staffing, I knew that handling the back end of contract placements was much more than I wanted to deal with by myself, so I asked for recommendations. A close friend and colleague referred me to FH as a “perfect match,” and he was correct.

How was your experience with our service/ using a back-office?
My experience using FH as the back-office has been stellar. Your company makes it realistic to venture out on your own as a recruiter making contract placements, because FH takes care of the hardest, most complicated part—the legal, monetary and organizational headaches of the back end.

What advice would you offer to someone looking to break in with a well-established client company?
First and foremost, you need to learn how the organization works. What do they need, and what are their pain points? Talk to employees, past and present – they often have the clearest viewpoints to offer. Then, you can offer the client something that nobody else can – a true understanding of their needs. But remember that testimonials on your behalf are always more effective than representing yourself.

What insider tips do you have for recruiters who are just starting out?
The single most important thing you can do is truly differentiate yourself from your competitors. Also, when you are talking to a hiring authority or gatekeeper within a client company, you need to understand what’s in it for them—that individual specifically, not just the company in general. Then, address their need. Don’t be broad – be specific. Finally, even when you succeed in making a direct or contract placement, don’t lose touch with your client or candidate. Continue your relationships with them and make sure it is a fit for both parties.

Would you recommend contract staffing to direct hire recruiters?
I would absolutely recommend it. If you can improve your services and set yourself apart, then go for it.

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