Virtual Recruiter

A virtual recruiter is a person who works remotely to help staffing agencies and companies find the right candidates for different job openings. Often companies face obstacles while recruiting which makes the process very difficult.
Two of the most common issues faced by companies are - lengthy recruitment process and a shortage of right candidates. Technology has helped us find innovative solutions and make life simpler and easier. Rather than conducting tiresome face-to-interviews, a virtual recruiter makes use of technological advances like job portals, social media, and recruitment software to find the perfect candidates.
These virtual recruiters conduct online face-to-face interviews through Skype, Google Hangouts, Facebook, and other platforms to pre-screen candidates before handing you the final shortlist. With so many resources available, the need for direct interviews has greatly decreased.

What companies need virtual recruiters

The main difference between an in-house recruiter and a virtual recruiter is that an in-house recruiter works in an office setting while a virtual recruiter works remotely.

80 percent of companies across the globe use third-party recruiters to hire talent especially top-level management positions that are hard to fill. Virtual recruiters are able to get a lot more prospective employees than an in-house recruitment department. It saves time and is cost-effective as no time and money is spent on travel. The virtual recruiter can interview the talent remotely. If you hire a virtual recruiter from a different country, they would be in a different timezone than you and still work, even when you have left the office.

Around 47 percent of small companies are unable to find the right talent for job openings because the in-house HR manager isn’t that skilled or doesn’t have adequate knowledge about the job profile. But that’s not the case when it comes to virtual recruiters as they are highly skilled, have specialized in a particular field, and understand job descriptions better than a general human resource manager.

Most companies hire a virtual recruiter to pre-select candidates. A virtual recruiter opens new possibilities as through them a company can hire better people that are located beyond the company’s reach. Some of the job profiles for which virtual recruiters are used the most are online and technology-related including social media manager, marketing, sales executive, customer service, and sales and business development.

Difference between a staffing agency and a virtual recruiter

In the past decade, many companies have turned to virtual recruiters and staffing agencies to hire talent through recruiter process outsourcing (RPO). The world has seen a constant 16 percent growth in RPOs with a total worth of almost $4.4 billion. Most people get confused between a virtual recruiter and a staffing agency. However, both of them are quite different and have a unique model of working.
A virtual recruiter works remotely and interviews talent to shortlist candidates that might be perfect for any job opening. Their job is only to send the employer a list of names and the company has to carry on the process ahead. They aren’t involved in any of the other recruitment processes. Most virtual recruiters specialize in a particular field only.
Staffing agencies are companies that work with virtual recruiters and permanent recruiters to help corporate companies find talent. These agencies take up the entire recruitment process right from searching for candidates to discussing salaries.
Both have their own set of pros and cons. Virtual recruiters are best for hiring talent for positions that are hard to fill. Once the companies get the list, they conduct face-to-face interviews. Most startups and small companies hire virtual recruiters. Staffing agencies are hired by large-scale companies that have a number of openings, and in-house recruitment department has too much workload to handle recruitment single-handedly.
However, hiring virtual recruiters is a wiser option than hiring staffing agencies as virtual recruiters do the basic most important task, i.e., finding the right candidates for a job opening. It is cost-effective as well, so why spend more when you can get the work done at a lower cost. Also, most of the virtual recruiters you will come across might have formerly worked in staffing agencies and will know everything about the process.

Responsibilities of a virtual recruiter

Even though the work of a virtual recruiter is limited to a single task, he has many responsibilities that are correlated and lead to one another. Here are some responsibilities of a virtual recruiter:

● Contact clients for identifying company’s requirements from social media, job portals, websites, and blogs
● Understand the skill sets a company is looking in an ideal candidate
● Posting advertisements for the job opening on job boards and postings
● Go through received resumes and shortlisting the best candidates for the job openings
● Conducting virtual interviews of the shortlisted candidates
● Narrowing down on a short list of prospective clients and sending it to the client company as the final decision in the company’s hands.

At the same time, along with all these responsibilities, a virtual recruiter should understand the client company’s culture and employer branding as well.

Benefits of hiring a virtual recruiter

As the world gets more and more technologically advanced, the need to do all the work at one place seems to be diminished. Virtual recruiters add more value to the company’s brand image as compared to in-house recruiters as they can find more and better talent due to their expertise in the field.

1. Saves you from the most tedious task

One of the most tedious parts of a recruitment process is searching job portals, social media, and networking to find candidates suitable for the job profile. It takes a lot of time and energy and is unarguably the most boring part of the process. Sometimes, it is especially hard to find candidates for difficult job profiles or top-level management employees. Most people want out of it, and the best way to do that is by hiring virtual recruiters. They know exactly the best candidates for a particular job profile can be found, saving a lot of time and efforts.


Hiring a virtual recruiter can save a client company’s money and resources. Companies will not require to set up a separate recruitment department to do the first few rounds of shortlisting and interviewing as it demands huge investments. You will have to hire permanent staff to fill in, and if they fail to identify right talent, you will lose all the money you have invested.

3. Promotes productivity

84 per cent employees are always looking forward to leaving the job if a better company approaches. This situation arises only when the candidate doesn’t fulfill all requirements of a job opening and isn’t satisfied with the job. It has a direct effect on a company’s productivity. Hiring a virtual recruiter will help the company stay away from unsuitable candidates and only select the deserving ones. Also, if the responsibility of shortlisting deal candidates is given to a virtual recruiter, productivity at work is increased. Time differences can be used smartly as the task will be done before you start next day’s work.

4. Saves time

There is so much time and resources that are saved by hiring a virtual recruiter. This time can be spent on doing activities that help the business grow. An average American company today takes 52 days to carry the recruitment process for a single open job position. By hiring a virtual recruiter, the number of days is drastically reduced as it is his job to focus on finding the ideal candidate and not tasks like in an office setting.

5. Increased engagement of top-level management

Top level management can utilize time to build new business models, plans for the future, and spend time in analyzing the market rather than interviewing people. If your company plans to hire an overseas virtual recruiter, you get the added benefit of your company working even after the working hours are over.

6. Employer takes the final decision

Unlike a staffing agency, a virtual recruiter will only send you a list of ideal candidates, and the final decision is yours. In a staffing agency, the agency completely handles the entire process leaving you with no option but hire the employee they have selected. Sometimes this selected employee might not be the perfect fit according to you. With a virtual recruiter in action, this situation is rarely encountered, as the client company conducts the final round.

Why should a company hire a virtual recruiter?

In a world where new job opportunities are constantly making their way to your employees, it is very important to retain them. Currently, on an average, in every company, at least 54 percent of employees are considering a new job. Losing employees is equal to losing resources. It is mostly encountered when an employee isn’t happy at work, doesn’t have skill sets that match the job profile, and that’s why doesn’t enjoy work. With a virtual recruiter in between the employer and prospective employees, such an issue won’t arise.

In a world where new job opportunities are constantly making their way to your employees, it is very important to retain them. Currently, on an average, in every company, at least 54 percent of employees are considering a new job. Losing employees is equal to losing resources. It is mostly encountered when an employee isn’t happy at work, doesn’t have skill sets that match the job profile, and that’s why doesn’t enjoy work. With a virtual recruiter in between the employer and prospective employees, such an issue won’t arise.

At the same time, prospective employees reject companies with bad reputations. If ex-employees weren’t happy at work, they would’ve blamed the company for it, damaging the company’s reputation. A prospective employer who might be interested in working with you might decline the offer after knowing about it. Around 69 percent candidates decline a job after knowing about a company’s reputation. That’s why it is best for companies to hire virtual recruiters so that no employee leaves with negative feelings about the company.

Working with a virtual recruiter also gives the company an opportunity to design its own recruitment process. You also save your HR manager’s time of finding people, interviewing them, and again interviewing them until you find the right fit. The recruitment process is very time consuming, and it is best to hand over the major chunk of work to a virtual recruiter.

In a world where social media is used for finding homes, it doesn’t make sense to use age-old slow methods of hiring candidates. Around 91 percent of employers use social media to find employees. This also includes the percent of employees found by virtual recruiters from social media.

Hiring a virtual recruiter is more affordable than staffing agencies, and you have greater control over the entire recruitment process as well. It is more cost-effective than hiring physical staff that might not always be beneficial.

Growth of virtual recruiters

The 10-year old industry of recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) is growing rapidly all across the globe. In an RPO, client companies hire companies or virtual recruiters to carry out the recruitment process, entirely or partly. China, India, and Philippines have become the major places for hiring virtual recruiters. RPO companies and virtual recruiters are becoming faces of companies and increasing its brand value. The future of virtual recruiters is bright.

Career opportunities as a virtual recruiter

As a career choice, becoming a virtual recruiter lets you work remotely. You don’t need an office or a designated area to work from, as everything you do from finding candidates to making a list takes place online. You get to work the way you want and develop your own work routine. There is no restriction on work timings as well.

As people identify and chase different dreams like traveling, playing music, or writing, choosing unconventional career opportunities like a virtual recruiter, lets you manage different things at the same time. With more small and mid-cap companies investing in virtual recruiters, there are endless opportunities arising every passing day. The biggest advantage of becoming a virtual recruiter is that you get complete independence and aren’t under pressure from top-level management, which usually is seen in a formal office setting.

However, one of the biggest disadvantages of becoming a virtual recruiter is that there is no fixed salary and times might arise when you might earn really less. You don’t get the privilege of maternity and paternity leaves, incentives and bonuses, and sick leaves. The job isn’t secure enough, and you might not even know when you are out of business. This can also be an advantage as virtual recruiters work on commission basis and you can ask any price for your time, expertise, and work.