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Recruitment ConsultantAlternative titles

Kaitohutohu Whiwhi Kaimahi

This job is sometimes referred to as:

Employment Consultant

Recruitment consultants help match people with jobs. They work with candidates (people looking for work) and clients (employers looking for people to work for them).

Contact us

Call us on 0800 222 733


Recruitment consultants earn a combination of a base salary and commission.

  • Recruitment consultants' base salaries are usually between $55,000 and $90,000 a year.
  • Recruitment managers' base salaries are usually between $80,000 and $130,000 a year.

The amount of commission they earn depends on the company they work for and is based on performance.

Source: Hudson Salary and Employment Insights, 2012.

What you will do

Recruitment consultants may do some or all of the following:

  • establish and build relationships with clients
  • work with clients and identify job vacancies that match their skills
  • advertise job vacancies in newspapers and on the internet
  • find potential candidates for jobs, which may include researching candidates on the internet or social media
  • interview, screen and test candidates
  • help candidates to update their curriculum vitae (CV) and prepare for interviews
  • shortlist candidates for job vacancies and present them to clients
  • negotiate salaries and contracts for candidates
  • advise clients and candidates on market trends and salaries.

Skills and knowledge

Recruitment consultants need to have:

  • the ability to understand the needs of a range of businesses and industries, and how they work
  • sales and marketing skills, and the ability to create work for their agency 
  • a good understanding of the economy and employment legislation
  • good writing skills for updating CVs and completing reports about candidates.

Working conditions

Recruitment consultants:

  • usually work regular office hours, but they may also work evenings and weekends to meet deadlines
  • work in offices
  • may travel locally to clients' workplaces, or nationally if part of a large agency.

What's the job really like?

Christine O’Donnell - Recruitment Consultant

Christine O'Donnell.
Previous work experience vital

Recruitment consultant Christine O'Donnell says it is vital for anyone wanting to get into the recruitment industry to have some previous work experience behind them.

"Before getting into recruitment I was heavily involved in the corporate world, in financial services and marketing, and found my experience really helped when I came into recruitment. Before you can help place people in work, you need to understand what it's like to be in the workforce – and working in a number of different organisations will give you that."

Closing the deal and caring about people both important parts of the job

Whilst being able to close a deal with a business is an important aspect of the job, caring about people is equally important, says Christine.

"After all, this is someone's career you're dealing with. I want the person I put forward for a job to like the job they get because the effects of that are huge; it affects their family and their lives. It's about getting back to basics, being honest and treating people how you would like to be treated yourself."


Recruitment consultants with one to five years’ experience usually earn
per year
Lina Siu entering an office building.

Recruitment consultants usually work in offices

Updated 10 Jun 2013