skip to Main Content

3 Reasons To Use Niche Recruiting Firms Instead of Generalists.


The recruiting industry serves a broad spectrum and choosing who to serve can define a firm’s culture and purpose.

Specialized or “niched” firms seek to become industry experts in a narrow sector. On the other end of the spectrum are volume-focused firms that recruit in as many areas as possible. Generalist firms recruit for any pharma positions and cross industries attempting to recruit on any they can conceive. The differences between these two strategies are many, so here are 3 reasons to use a niche recruiting firm.

1. Niched Firms Have Relationships with More Candidates

Niched firms specialize in a specific position or industry segment. They contacting a specialized group of candidates every day. When getting on a new search, they have a group of personally-known candidates to call immediately. There’s no guarantee a candidate will be interested, but it’s likely they’ll suggest other people who may be. The point is that specialized firms sprint out of the gate more effectively than firms who go back to the drawing board for each search. When employers receive a resume from a specialized firm, there’s a good chance they know the candidate.  They trust the recruiter has vetted the candidate over time and know they’ll be worth your time to interview.

2. Niched Firms Understand the Culture and Needs of Clients

Specialized recruiting also means having a smaller, more familiar group of client companies. For example, recruiting Medical Science Liaisons doesn’t mean recruiting for every pharma company you know. It means recruiting for those companies that have marketed or near-marketed products worthy of a supporting cast of MSLs. Recruiting within this select sector of companies inherently means getting to know the clients’ needs better, developing better relationships with them – both the HR personnel and the hiring managers, and learning the nuances of their culture. This provides specialized firms to have a focused approach rather than a “shotgun” approach.

3. Niched Firms are Experts and Industry Insiders

Part of the benefit of niched recruiting benefits from being less ‘resume broker’ and more ‘sector expert’. We spend hours every day talking with MSLs and MSL employers, making us more “in the know” with what’s happening in the MSL universe. You can rely on your specialized MSL recruiters for insight into the landscape of MSL positions, current salaries, and the latest MSL interviewing trends. We’re usually good for a little free intel here and there!

Questions or comments? Email me at lawrence@sembiogroup.com.

Author: Lawrence Beck, CPC

Lawrence joined SEMbio in 2011 and is a team leader in recruiting and business development. He attended Texas Tech University on a path that led him to obtain his Master’s degree in Sports Management which provides Lawrence a unique perspective as a recruiter.