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A variety of inter-related terms are used to refer to the kind of firms that work to find appropriate candidates to fill vacancies within companies.

The Employment Agency: the most traditional form of this sort of business. People looking for work usually approach their actual offices or premises and leave their details. The agent then looks for a suitable position on the list of vacancies at hand.

The Executive Search Firm: a firm that deals with vacancies further up in the corporate hierarchy: they therefore attract a more skilled populace. The term, head hunter, is popular as an informal way of referring to an executive search consultant.

The Head-Hunter: while often being used as a colouful synonym for an executive search consultant, this term also suggests a far more active modus operandi. Headhunters may thus visit potential candidates in their offices, attend the kind of trade show that may also attract potential candidates, and foster relationships with organizations and people that could later prove valuable. With their alternative strategies, and advanced sales techniques, headhunters can have an edge when it comes to securing the most desirable, highly skilled and competent candidates.

The Niche Placement Firm: these firms focus on those with highly specialised skill-sets. This singular focus makes them highly efficient when persons of this kind are required. They also often have long-term relationships with the candidates they place, finding them a number of positions over the course of their careers.
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