5 Key Differences Between a Corporate Recruiter and Staffing Firm Recruiter

There are two primary methods to fill a position at your company. You can choose to enlist the help of either a corporate recruiter or a staffing firm recruiter.

Although these two necessary functions sound similar, they are distinctly different.

It is best to determine which one will work best to serve your company’s needs and meet its goals. 

Before making a selection, get to know the five main differences between the two.

What is the Difference Between a Corporate Recruiter and a Staffing Firm Recruiter?

Many businesses do not know what a corporate recruiter or a staffing firm recruiter does. This leads to not understanding their differences, causing your hiring process to suffer.

Your company is losing money and opportunities without this information.

A Breakdown of the Two Types of Recruiters

  1. Corporate Recruiters vs. Staffing Firm Recruiters

Corporate Recruiters

Corporate recruiters are what many businesses know as in-house or internal recruiters. Their position involves the full recruitment process distributing job posting, in-taking applications, and resumes. 

These recruiters also handle:

  • Finding candidates
  • Narrowing the applicant pool
  • Interview process

The typical background of a corporate recruiter is generally one in human resources. Essentially, their focus is on finding qualified candidates for companies to hire. Sales work or selling is not part of the process in any way.

A corporate recruiter is an employee of a company and does not need to try and find steady work.

As standard employees, they are not as easy to dismiss or replace if their results are weak. 

Staffing Firm Recruiters

Recruiters at places like IT recruiting agencies operate as much in a sales position as they do in the role of human resources. 

The typical background of a staffing firm recruiter is generally an experienced negotiator. They can recruit candidates and close deals.

Staffing firm recruiters must perform competently to gain steady work and steady pay. It requires the staffing firm recruiters to compete with other staffing agencies. This adds an extra layer of pressure to respond quickly to the customer (candidate or company.)

Clients often measure the work of a staffing firm recruiter by using feedback. They will also check the number of times a recruiter has filled a position. 

Some companies have reviewed the recruiter’s number of “wrong hires.”, as well. This can cause roles to have to be re-filled at no charge to the client but shows poor job performance.


  1. Technical Knowledge vs. Recruiting Expertise

Corporate Recruiters

Corporate recruiters specialize in filling roles with candidates within their company’s industry. Their sources are often in a single vertical or group. Corporate recruiters use technical knowledge to handle several work requests at their company.

This specialization is more beneficial for some positions. This includes hospital, sales, management, or tech positions.

Staffing Firm Recruiters

Staffing firm recruiters are skillful at recruiting candidates for positions at many companies. They work in various types of industries with access to a wide range of sources in many areas.

By having recruiting expertise, it can make selecting a candidate much easier to do.


  1. Firsthand Culture vs. Secondhand Interpretation

Corporate Recruiters

Since corporate recruiters are company employees, they live the company culture. Thus, they gain firsthand perception. 

This experience makes working with the human resources department a more straightforward process. It allows more time and attention to be on communication and recruiting efforts.

Staffing Firm Recruiters

Staffing firm recruiters only know a company’s culture via observation. They also can get it from hiring managers as secondhand interpretation. 

This can limit a recruiter’s ability to join in company meetings and to communicate well.


  1. Investment in Corporate Brand vs. Self-Interest

Corporate Recruiters

Corporate recruiters invest in the company they work for, as this is how they get paid. They will work to promote and build the reputation of your company.

Thus, their interest is in the corporate brand. Corporate recruiters invest in the company and will help increase their brand.

Staffing Firm Recruiters

Staffing firm recruiters work hard to fill business positions with qualified candidates. It is the only way they get paid. 

They also work to form good reputations and to continue getting deals. 

Thus, their interest lies in themselves. Staffing firm recruiters invest in crafting their own brands.


  1. Slow Pace vs. Fast Pace

Corporate Recruiters

Corporate recruiters do not need to grow a pool of candidates to the same degree as other recruiters. For they are not competing like they are for pay. This can result in creating higher costs due to a slower hiring process.

Staffing Firm Recruiters

Staffing firm recruiters must often be recruiting candidates. It is the only way to operate in a competitive environment. 

These recruiters must become accustomed to acquiring contacts and utilizing every networking opportunity. They need to grow pools of active and passive candidates for now and in the future. 

Staffing firm recruiters with larger applicant pools often create faster hiring cycles.


Whether to select a corporate recruiter or staffing firm recruiter, depends on preference. 

It is best to base your decision on which of the two types of recruiters best fits your business needs. 

Some companies regard corporate recruiters as having the most advantages. Others feel it is staffing firm recruiters who produce the best work. 

One significant component of whichever type of recruiter you choose is to you make sure you get your money’s worth.

Rylie Holt