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Spinnaker Global - recruiting for the shipping, marine and maritime industries since 1997

Frequently asked questions - for employers

What kinds of recruitment processes do Spinnaker use?

Contingency recruitment

Otherwise known as Database Search or File Search, this is a service drawing upon the extensive Spinnaker database, which has been built upon since 1997. Payment on success only.

Our consultants take a comprehensive assignment brief from you, match your person specification against our candidate database and then contact appropriate individuals to establish their interest and suitability for your vacancy.

Having interviewed and vetted them ourselves, interviews with you will then be organised and should a candidate introduced by Spinnaker commence employment with you, a fee is charged when they start work.

Executive search

Executive Search is a targeted research-based project approach to identifying and confidentially approaching talented individuals with the aim of motivating them to consider your specific opportunity. The chances of success are significantly increased by dedicating time and resources to the project.

Search is most commonly used for senior vacancies, but also for business critical and hard-to-fill positions where skill sets are in short supply. The main benefit of search is finding and hiring top achievers who are unlikely to be actively looking for a job, or those with potential who may be constrained in their current organization. Search also gives you exclusive access to those people and a representative whose job it is to sell your company and your opportunity to them.

Please note that we are unable to offer search in some of our market areas if this would involve approaching candidates employed by our regular clients. For more information on Spinnaker’s Executive Search process, visit

What motivates recruitment consultants?

Filling vacancies. That's how they make their money. All recruitment consultants are therefore taught to "qualify" clients and their vacancies so they can decide which vacancies they should be spending their time on.

Some of the factors they consider are listed below (see "Qualifying Vacancies"), but to put it in a few words, recruitment consultants will work hardest for clients who respect them, who give full information on the company, the job and the package, who give quick feedback on CVs and interviews, who are willing to answer questions and who are committed to the recruitment process.

What do our consultants say about our best clients? "They're easy to work with." "I like her." "They listen to my advice." "The feedback's always really useful."

  • Qualifying Vacancies - what do recruitment consultants look for?
  • Are fees and terms agreed?
  • Is the client co-operative, helpful and communicative?
  • Is the position attractive, marketable and sellable to Candidates?
  • How urgent or ‘real' is the position?
  • Is a true Decision Maker being dealt with?
  • Is it a complete assignment with full information and client commitment?
  • Does the package match the person specification?
  • Are the Company and the career prospects attractive?
  • How exclusive is the assignment and for how long has it been open?
  • Is the location attractive?
  • Can the Candidate be sourced and position filled within the timescale?
How many CVs should I expect?

This is a difficult one to answer, but you certainly should not be receiving a large number of CVs. One of the benefits of using a recruitment consultant should be to save you time, not to inundate you with a whole load of unsuitable CVs.

If we have done our job properly, we will have a full job specification from you and a proper understanding of the person and the cultural fit you're looking for. We then aim to short-list a small number of qualified candidates. They will be well briefed on your company background and the vacancy prior to attending an interview with you.

What if I've only had one CV?

Don't be afraid to offer a good candidate a job, even if they are the first person you see. If they fit the bill, snap them up - if you don't a competitor will, especially in a ‘candidate-driven' market. A lot of time and resources could be wasted finding someone else as good.

You've stopped sending me CVs. Why is that?

Assuming it's not because we can't find anyone suitable(!), in which case you should have been made aware, the most likely reason is that we have not received constructive feedback on CVs previously sent or on interviews that have taken place. Recruitment consultants learn from feedback and they also infer from lack of feedback or communication that clients are no longer interested in filling the job or have filled it already.

Do we have to keep in touch with you?

We need to keep candidates interested in you and your vacancy, particularly the best ones, who may be looking at several other positions simultaneously. A good consultancy will be working with you throughout the process to keep expectations managed and avoid disappointments. If we don't know what's happening at your end it becomes difficult to do this. Candidates take recruitment personally - after all you're buying or rejecting them - and they can easily come to the wrong conclusion about your company and ours if they feel ignored. Contact is everything in the recruitment process, on both sides.

Should I only use one consultant?

Not necessarily. But do be honest about the fact that you are using others and also whether you are considering internal candidates. That way, your recruiters will not confuse candidates who may have spoken to more than one of them about your job and they can manage their expectations. They will also be aware of the fact that they are up against competition and need to work quickly if they want to be the one who fills the job for you.

By the same token, don't use too many recruiters. This will demotivate individual recruiters and is more likely to result in CV races where speed takes the place of good process, proper compliance and full briefings to candidates. This helps no-one.

Exclusivity, even for a limited period, can be a great motivator for recruitment consultants and there may be times when a consultancy will only take a vacancy on an exclusive basis based on the particular circumstances.

What if I just want to see a few CVs?

Occasionally, employers still phone and ask for a few CVs or a few ‘sample' CVs. If you've read the other sections on this page, you'll be aware that without client commitment to the recruitment process and a full job description, it is very difficult for recruiters to help. In addition to that, the law forbids recruitment consultants from sending out candidate CVs without first having identified your company and the candidate having authorised submission of their details to you.

Should I meet my recruitment consultant?

If they are willing to meet you, then absolutely. The better they know you, the better a job your consultant will do of promoting your company and vacancy and the harder they are likely to work.

How do I choose the right recruitment consultant?

There are many recruitment consultancies to choose from. Find and stick with one that understands the industry, your organisation and that convinces you of its ethics and professionalism.

  • Do they specialise in your market? Not just in the industry, but your bit of it!
  • How long have they been operating?
  • Have they recruited for your competitors or similar organisations?
  • Do they have a consultative approach?
  • Can they help you in other ways? Salary advice, benchmarking?
  • What proof / evidence can they provide to demonstrate their previous experience?
  • Can they commit to working with you to an agreed deadline?
  • Are they willing to come to meet you if you want them to?
  • What comfort do you have in their ability to be confidential with the information you give them?
Will the recruitment consultant have knowledge of the industry and sector?

Of course you are not obliged to take any advice; after all, it is your organisation and no one understands it better, but a specialist professional recruitment consultant is handling similar vacancies every day and is able to impart a market view on salaries, labour supply and demand, competition for candidates, the most [cost] effective places to advertise and so on. And if they want repeat business from you, they will be motivated to get it right!

Also, remember that candidates are more relaxed when speaking through recruiters, so your consultant is likely to have helpful insight when it comes to helping you close negotiations and salary discussions.