The Rising Cost Of Recruitment

Recruitment Agency


One thing that Personal Best Worldwide aims to abolish, is the rising cost of recruitment. Recruitment Companies must charge for their services, of course, but does the charge relate to the quality of service they are providing, and does it make companies hiring feel the pinch?

Today we are going to be looking at how recruitment costs have soared over recent years, with greedy executives pushing the costs higher to fund top-spec offices and to collect big bonuses for their team’s hard work.

Recruitment services are a necessity for a lot of companies hiring who may not have a large team of recruiters internally or may not have the resources to screen candidates, or complete talent acquisition functions themselves. 

When I first started in recruitment back in 2007, it was completely normal for a recruitment company to be charging a fee of around 10-12% of the role’s annual salary as a fee, still hefty if your role came with a $100k annual salary.


However, fast forward to COVID-19 in 2020, staffing firms and recruitment agencies hiked their prices tremendously due to the labor shortage across the globe. Which affected global recruitment on a vast scale. The Rising Cost Of Recruitment, hiring companies were scrambling for the best talent. Candidates started side hustles and found other ways to make money online or from home, and so the candidate pool dwindled.

Coming out of Covid and into 2023, I have heard on the grapevine of lots of recruitment companies, staffing agencies, and the best staffing agencies charging up to 35% for a placement fee arrangement on their recruitment services, even heftier if your role has a salary of between $50-100k per year. So why has it jumped so much? The rising cost of recruitment and living and inflation, sure play a part in recruiters wanting higher wages. But have the outgoing costs of recruitment gone up? Sure, a little. Does it warrant a 35% fee? Not at all and I will tell you why.


Granted there are some industry-specific and hard-to-fill roles out there, that may take months and months to fill and recruit for. Of course, those roles usually warrant a higher price tag or a specialist recruiter to work on them. For general roles, such as Engineers, Project managers, VPs, and customer services/sales, the cost to recruit for the role is inexpensive. Say you are hiring for a position with a $70k salary and the fee you are paying to the recruitment agency is $14,000 at the very minimum (20%) what justifies that cost? Is it the cost of advertising the role? No, is it the cost of interviewing candidates for the position? No, not even if they must interview 50 people.

What if I told you, that the average role costs a recruiter no more than $300 – $700 in actual physical recruitment costs? What if I told you, that, the $14,000 or $20,000 you pay to those recruitment companies or talent-sourcing people is over 95% profit? Sure the recruiter has paid a salary, but do you really think the recruitment agencies are giving them 100% of that profit? No, they may get a commission of say 10% or 15% equalling around $1,400 and sure, they may get a base salary of $3000 a month.

But even if you take into account the advertising and talent sourcing costs, whether via indeed, LinkedIn, zip-recruiter or other platforms, plus the monthly salary (which won’t be payable just from your role) and the commission on-top, that would still leave the company with around $7,500-$8,500 in profit, per role.

The Rising Cost Of Recruitment

The Rising Cost Of Recruitment: Imagination

Now imagine the recruitment company, hiring agency, or independent talent source is working on 3 roles per month, and the company has 10 recruitment consultants working for them. The Profits are ASTOUNDING.

So… you may be thinking, as a modern-day recruitment agency, HR service provider, and talent acquisition specialist. Why does Personal-Best Worldwide not want in on the big bucks? Well, it isn’t that we don’t want to make money, of course, we do.

BUT… we want to make recruitment an available service to a wide range of companies, whether they’re start-ups, mid-sized expanding businesses. Or corporates who are sick of paying the earth for mediocre recruitment services from sub-standard executive recruiters or search firms. We think it’s important to let businesses customize the packages and level of support they need, and most importantly pay a fair price for their recruitment, talent sourcing, talent acquisition, and candidate sourcing needs.


Our aim is to revolutionize the recruitment industry and make companies aware that we want to change! And we want it now! Personal-Best Worldwide is changing the face of global recruitment.

We want to change the face of everything recruitment, from; recruitment company, staffing agency, HR recruitment, Executive recruitment, candidate sourcing, talent acquisition, global recruitment, tech recruitment, healthcare recruitment, and recruiting solutions to talent sourcing, HR solutions, and services, and much more.

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