Recruitment agencies are continually increasing in popularity, especially in today’s digital-forward world. More companies are beginning to adopt and rely on the expertise which recruitment consultancy services can provide when filling vacancies. Crucially, more candidates are starting to use recruitment agencies to find their perfect job opportunity too.

From helping a candidate to write the perfect CV, tweaking an application, providing interview briefings and in-depth company information, recruitment agencies are always on hand to ensure companies have access to the best talent available.

In this article, we will shed light on how recruitment agencies actually work, as well as the benefits which they provide for candidates when looking for a new job.

What is a recruitment agency?

Simply put, a recruitment agency is an organisation which sources suitable candidates for vacant positions across several companies. Recruitment agencies sift through the wide array of sources including their website, job fairs, job boards, various networks and social media, amongst others, all in the hopes of finding the perfect candidate.

Once the shortlist of prospective candidates has been finalised, the recruiter will usually go through a multi-step screening process in which they assess the candidate’s CV, covering letter, relevant information and overall application. Upon finding a match between the job description and the candidate’s application, an interview will be planned in which the recruiter will discuss the skills and expectations of the candidate. If successful, a final interview between the client and the candidate will also take place, in which the job will either be filled or remain vacant.

The benefit of using a recruitment agency is that they nurture relationships. In the vastly concentrated jobs market, you might not have the opportunity to track every application and maintain a relationship with the prospective employer, this is where recruitment agencies come in. Coupling their industry expertise of the job market with their vast recruitment network means you have the tools on hand to make the perfect career move. They will assist you throughout the entire process and keep  the relationship between the client and candidate active.

Different types of recruitment

There are three main types of recruitment – Interim, Project Sourcing and Recruitment & selection. They each vary considerably depending on your personal needs and desires.


As explained by the name, interim work focuses solely on temporary or short term projects. For this, recruitment agencies source candidates who can quickly and effectively join an organisation to fulfil a short term project. A company could be sourcing an interim member of staff to help them with everything from an increased workload to temporarily replacing an employee.

Main considerations:

  • The nature of interim work means it concentrates on expeditious implementation for immediate results.
  • Interim work usually focuses on filling a generalised vacancy, as opposed to implementing areas of speciality.
  • Fitting with the short term nature of the work, the relationship a candidate has with an interim recruitment agency is also short term, as the work is usually fulfilled quickly.

Project sourcing

Similar to Interim, project sourcing refers to when organisations seek candidates to work on temporary projects, albeit with different clients. Which means as a candidate, you will be employed by the project sourcing organisation, although working on various temporary client projects. This type of recruitment is of particular interest to specialist freelance experts that want to develop their skills further by exercising them frequently across multiple projects.

For companies, project sourcing is beneficial because they can temporarily hire the aforementioned experts. Project sourcing also means the responsibility of the experts remains with the recruitment agency, allowing the client to have optimum flexibility.

Recruitment & selection

Probably the  most widespread and popular form of recruitment, Recruitment & Selection is when a recruitment agency sources candidates to fill permanent positions for their clients. The agency’s work is only complete once the candidate has successfully joined the client in question and integrated fully within the organisation or team.

Recruitment & Selection is usually a process that takes a substantial amount of time, as the candidate must be perfect for the permanent position. It’s particularly interesting for candidates who are seeking opportunities in a specific industry or company.

At Ex-Mil recruitment, we possess a combined 50+ years of experience in the military, 50+ years in the commercial sector and over 30+ years in the recruitment industry. This vast experience we have amassed has given us an in-depth understanding of what employers want and how we can help them appoint the perfect candidates.

We are experts in in sourcing and appointing ex-military candidates for businesses of all sizes both within the UK and overseas. We are driven by our passion for the recruitment sector and the armed forces.

Whether you’re an employer seeking to recruit the very best ex-military talent, or if you’re currently a serving member of the armed forces looking for new recruitment opportunities, please contact our founder Jean-Claude for a confidential discussion on [email protected] or call +44 (0)333 202 6500 ext 1.