XPG Insights

Staffing industry recruiting news, advice and thought leadership.

XPG Insights

Staffing industry recruiting news, advice and thought leadership.

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Trust & Confidentiality

It’s 2022, and a lot of resolutions have been made. At the top of the list for many people is to start looking for a new job. That process can cause of a lot of unease, in part because until you have secured a new job, you are dependent on the one you currently have. 

Confidentiality is essential to the staffing business. Recruiters must be trustworthy in order to retain relationships with clients and candidates. Most candidates who are employed do not want their employers to know they’re on the market, so we need to be discreet. Sometimes, that can make our job tricky, but it is also what makes a recruiter a valuable partner. 

As recruiters for the staffing industry, our company would assume everyone would understand that confidentiality would be absolute, but we have found it to be a constant concern. And because we hear it frequently, I think it is worth addressing how often we juggle concealed identities and top-secret information in a way that would make James Bond proud.  

The trust candidates place in us goes beyond simply hiding the job search itself. Candidates must trust us enough to tell us things they can’t – or won’t – tell a prospective employer. It’s axiomatic that you never speak ill of your current employer, but a recruiter needs to know why you’re ready to quit. Telling us about toxic managers, company changes, or a bad fit for a new role will stay with us and help us make a better match  – or avoid a bad one. We are extremely careful with that information so it never reflects badly on our candidates. 

We also never submit a candidate’s resume without asking the candidate first because we may not have important information about a possible connection, such as their boss being friends with that company’s CEO. We can take measures to mask a candidate’s identity. We can remove their name, location and specific titles or awards that are unique to their current employer to help the candidate stay anonymous while still highlighting what makes them special. 

We are constantly hiding identities, even from close friends. We once had two candidates for the same management role. The tricky part was that they knew each other, had worked together in the recent past, and had even listed each other as references. We had to navigate both of their searches without revealing anything about the other. The story has a good ending, though; they both landed positions in the same company and were happily surprised to find out that they’d be working together again. 

And that’s really the main point for candidates: can you trust the process enough to have your dream job? In this moment in time where you know you want something different and better for your future, are you comfortable handing over critical information to someone else? Do you trust the recruiter to find you the right new opportunity? As a recruiting company, if your candidates can’t answer yes, then something is missing.  

For candidates, if your fears are keeping you from moving forward with the job search, ask your recruiter to talk about their methods to help you build confidence in the process. You can also ask for references. Good recruiters have a recent list of new hires who have faced the same fears you have. They’ll be pleased to share their stories, via a simple testimonial or an anonymous three-way call set up by your recruiter.  

Les Brown once said, Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears. Find a recruiter you can trust and check one of your major New Years Resolutions off your list.   


About the Author:

Rich Thompson, CEO of XPG Recruit, is an expert on staffing, human resources, training and leadership development.  XPG Recruit provides recruiting for staffing companies. For consulting to increase engagement and/or retention, check out the services of our sister company, Xtra Point Group.