Delimited Search

The Delimited Search Model

Delimited search, a highly effective and efficient recruiting model, is often improperly categorized as retained search. While having distinct differences, they do share common advantages. The Delimited model merges the effectiveness and assurance of attention to client projects inherent to Retained search, with the performance incentives fundamental to Contingency search. It is a highly productive model that companies can employ for either periodic or ongoing recruitment management engagement. It ensures that project deliverables and quality of work  are the definitive measures of proper execution, because client satisfaction “checks” are incremented throughout each project’s life cycle. Fee payments are incremented throughout the project and are predicated and earned solely upon the successful achievement of each phase.

With Delimited engagement a recruiting firm invests the considerable time necessary to fully understand a client’s organization and position responsibility/requirements before implementing work. Consultants will focus systematic recruiting and evaluation efforts on a broad targeted range of potential candidates, most of whom are not in the active job market. The search process can continue even after the client has decided to move forward on a promising candidate. An RPO consultant may personally handle only about 3 to 5 assignments, on average, at any given time ensuring dedicated, obedient focus. A search consultant may invest 30 to 40 hours per month per client assignment. Engaged firms spend more on research, discovery, identifying, qualifying and isolating viable candidates. The firm will usually recommend 2-4 highly qualified candidates to the client which have been culled through a series of assessment steps. This process requires less client Human Resources involvement but does require direct the involvement of the managers for whom the recruiting is being conducted. Search consultants always interview, assess and vet candidates personally, routinely more than once, before presenting them for client interview.

Similar to Retained search, Delimited search assignments require a percentage of the projected total fee to engage and commence processes – usually only a 1/3 – which both obligates the search firm’s total resources, and ensures client commitment to the project. However, dissimilar to Retained engagement, which requires full payment of professional fees regardless of outcome (similar to legal firm representation), the Delimited search’s fees are predicated solely upon successful outcomes throughout. This performance aspect provides powerful economic incentive for the recruiting firm, while ensuring and protecting the recruiting and financial interests of the client company. Searches are customized to the client organization’s needs and are conducted as a highly interactive and consultative process with committed resources and attention virtually ensuring affirmative outcome.