Search Firm Rankings by Forbes


In September 2017 Jeff Kauflin of Forbes worked with analytics firm Statista to compile two lists of America’s best recruiting firms.

The first set ranks 250 executive search firms, defined as companies that place executives in positions with at least $100,000 in annual pay.

The second ranks 250 professional search firms, which place employees in roles with less than $100,000 in annual income.

Many of these companies work either across the entire United States or even Globally.

I think you’ll find these lists useful as you discover professional and executive search firms to work with.

Remember, never discount the opportunity to work with good firms.



Preparing your References

Preparing your ReferencesPreparing your references

You references are important to you for two very deliberate and different reasons:

  1. Recruiters & Hiring Managers all want and need to speak to your references
  2. If you have good references, they can help you network & connect on your job search journey.

Most recruiters or hiring managers will ask you for 4-5 good professional references.

There is more to do than just

Preparing your References

These individuals should be your supervisors, bosses, managers, customers, etc. Anyone who can clearly and without reservation speak to your skills, talents, accomplishments and passion relevant to the position(s) you are applying for.

If the recruiters only want to speak to a few, I encourage you to have 8-10 people picked to provide your references.

These folks can also help you to network, connect and have conversations that can help you during this job search journey.

Here are a few other things these folks can do for you:

  1. Provide deliberate, focused and strong referrences when they are called about you.
  2. Provide you with written recommendations relevant to the type of work you are looking to do.
  3. Provide LinkedIn recommendations regarding the work you have done for/with them in the past.
  4. Endorse you on LinkedIn for relevant Skills and Expertise that you have
  5. Introduce you to people who may be able to help you on this career transition journey
  6. Review your resume and LinkedIn Profile (when you politely ask for the help) and give guidance relevant to your specific industry and position

Another interesting point about Preparing your references: With the expansion of LinkedIn (& other social media platforms), you may not know who will be called for a reference.  A good reference may be someone from your past including managers, supervisors, etc. It could be useful to say hello and maybe chat with as many of your past supervisors, peers, etc as you can in the event they get a call.

Preparing your References is not about just listing them on a piece of paper


Why do some recruiters use fake jobs

Fake Job Offer

Fake Job Offers

Our unemployed friends and family often tell me that they get asked to apply for Fake Job Offers. Why?

So here is the question – Why do Hiring Managers and Recruiters create Fake Job Offers?

Would there be any value in being honest? Post for applicants but tell them upfront that this job is not ready to be filled or not currently open.

Please help our job seekers with the answer to these questions:

Failed to get hired because of Facebook

This is a true story of Social Media activity resulting in failure.


A recruiter, we’ll call him Gary, told me this story.

One of Gary’s clients asked him to find candidates for a pretty good job – Manager of Desktop Services leading a staff of 3 people supporting 200 computer users. The pay rate, benefits and profit sharing plan is better than average for the region and industry.

Gary did a great job searching for candidates. He found 3 that his client interviewed and narrowed the search down to two.

Gary’s client asked him to do some more interviewing and research and make a recommendation of which of the two would be the best hire.

Gary interviewed the two candidates two more times and arranged for another high level recruiter to interview them as well.

One of the candidate, let’s call him Steve, rose to the top of the everyone’s list.

He answered all the questions with solid responses, made great suggestions for improving customer service and desktop functionality. Bill, the other candidate  did a good job in the interviewing, but not quite as good as Steve.

Steve was slightly more polite, professional and a little easier going than Bill. Everyone agreed that Steve would be the best hire.

Despite all of this, Gary had a nagging feeling that something was not quite as it seemed.

Gary had looked at Steve’s LinkedIn profile already, but he went back to look at it again. His profile was fairly standard. Nothing different than what his resume shows.

Gary decided that he should Google Steve’s name.  When he did, the top search results were numerous Facebook pictures of Steve.

Gary opened the first Facebook picture. It was in an album that contained dozens of pictures of guys drinking and playing pool. Gary looked at another album, similar pictures.

Many college kids have photos of themselves playing, drinking, dancing and doing what many college kids do. However Steve has been out of college for 3 years and all of these pictures were recent.

Gary pondered what he had learned. Steve was a good candidate, yet Gary worried about recommending him to his client because of these images. What if the client searched for Steve online and found these pictures? Would the client be disturbed about these images? Would he be upset that Gary recommended what could be considered a “party animal”?

Gary searched online for Bill and found a LinkedIn profile that supported his resume. He found a Facebook profile but no public images or activity at all.

Gary had made up his mind. He told his client to hire Bill.

Gary asked his HR manager if he should tell Steve why he did not get hired. The HR Manager said to tell Steve that he was not the best candidate and nothing more.

In summary, the best candidate is chosen based on skills, expertise, experience, critical thinking ability and lots of other criteria, including perception of the person fitting into the working environment. This evaluation is done thru interviews, reference checking and like it or not, Social Media research.

Therefore, make sure your Social Media information supports your business & career goals.


Use Social Media correctly to Recruit

I fully understand the fear that businesses have regarding using Social Media tools for candidate search and evaluation; however it’s important to get past these fears by putting real, honest and transparent processes in place.

These processes can’t be fully explained in a quick blog post; however using (all) Social Media systems for candidate search and evaluation is important because of the powerful search tools available to recruiters today.

I believe that documenting these processes and teaching (& monitoring) your staff to use them appropriately can mitigate the risk and increase the benefits. Share the processes (high level) with your candidates so that they are all aware of how your business use these tools is also important to help mitigate the risks & increase the benefits.

One of the biggest fears is that a recruiter or hiring manager will learn information that could be used in a discriminatory way about a candidate thru Social Media. How do they handle this when a candidate is recommended for a job by an employee? If they want to know useful & relevant information about a candidate thru their Social Media Profiles – consider having a non-hiring employee review the Social Media Profiles and report back the relevant information needed, sans the potential discriminatory info. (this is only one idea – not the only answer)

In summary – LinkedIn, as well as Social Media in general, is a powerful set of tools for Candidate Search.  Guidelines & Procedures, Policies, Training and Monitoring can enable businesses to use Social Media Profiles to recruit high quality candidates without the risk of litigation.

Do you want help with this – contact Teddy Burriss