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Beelia said, "... what interests me most about contract work, and what I
really don't know since I haven't done it in a long time, is the percentage
paid to contract agencies. In the early 90s (I was in SoCal in aerospace) it
was about 15%; but now I think it must be much, much more. And back then,
that 14-15% included benefits. Similarly, does anyone know about what the
recruiter's fee is? There are so many popping up now, it must be
Agency/recruiter fees range from about 15% to whatever the traffic will
bear. The good agencies will tell you what their cut is. In the last several
years, I think a lot of agencies were forced to downsize, and some former
recruiters have set themselves up as single-person companies and try to
undercut the bigger agencies. Ten or 15 years ago, companies that hired
temporary or contract professional employees like programmers and writers,
had a few favorite firms they gave all their job Reqs to. No other agencies
tried to fill those jobs, and. I seldom got calls from agencies outside my
own metro area. Public entities like federal agencies and state DOT
departments had to publicly post openings, and many more agents and
recruiters went after those jobs.
Now, with nationwide internet job boards that copy each others' jobs, every
free agent and one-man shop in the country is chasing everything. It's not
unusual for me to get 10 emails or calls as soon as AT&T or another large
company puts out a job Req, and the recruiters are from all over the US and
India! The (total) rate offered for the job is set by the company. Say,
$60/hour. The job offers I received range from $20 to $50/hour, with the
greedy little guys offering the stingiest hourly rates. Another trend is
that the big agencies are getting bigger, and smaller firms are merging to
survive and compete. Randstad, Allegis, Robert Half, and several others have
become conglomerates. One plus is the large conglomerates are more likely to
provide a range of benefits. Before you sign with an agency, at least check
them out online first.
Margaret Cekis, Johns Creek GA
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