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Mar 20, 2019

Samantha Cole, in-house counsel for Adams, Evens, & Ross (AER), and Wilson Cole, President of AER take a few minutes today to talk about top excuses companies give for back door hires. Annually, AER interacts with about 3,000 staffing and recruiting firms globally (about 1,500 staffing and about 1,500 recruiting). The terminology for back door hires differs slightly depending on the industry and can also be known as “tempnapping” or “conversions.” Excuse number one is that the company “already knew the candidate.” This could be that the candidate used to work for the company, the candidate worked with the company on a project some time in the past, or the company just knew the candidate due to their visibility within the industry. This specific excuse is vague and just plain not good enough. Samantha goes on to explain that companies know a lot of people, and ironically, she gets to “know” the attorneys of other companies when they try to use this excuse. But what does that even mean? Just because a company “knew” a candidate from somewhere does not mean they knew the candidate was looking to make a transition and that distinction makes all the difference in the world, especially the staffing and recruiting world. She says another key element is when the company told the staffing or recruiting firm that they already knew a candidate. Doing so as soon as the candidate’s resume is sent over, before any interviews, is much different from doing so weeks or months later, after the candidate has become a back door hire and the staffing or recruiting firm has caught them in the act. Another excuse, a variation of “we already knew the candidate” is when a company will tell a recruiter to specifically target the staff of its close competitor. The company will do this because they don’t want to start a war by directly stealing the staff from their competitor; the recruiter is just there for plausible deniability. This excuse ends with the recruiter bringing back the name of a candidate ready to switch sides and the company who hired the recruiter says “oh, we already know that candidate, so no fee is owed,” which is very disingenuous because of course they already knew the candidate, due to this typically happening in niche markets and/or because the company told the recruiter who to specifically target in the first place. If have a collections issue that you want AER to take a look at, feel free to call 800-452-5287, extension 6578 or extension 6681, or you can email or