How Much Does a Recruitment Cost? Exploring Recruitment Agency Costs

minutes reading
June 8, 2023
vad kostar en rekrytering vi reder ut kostnaderna|Quiet Hiring
In this article, we provide a summary of various recruitment methods and their associated costs.

How Much Does a Recruitment Cost?

What does recruitment actually cost? How much do recruitment agencies charge? What are the different approaches and services available for recruitment? In this article, we provide a summary of various recruitment methods and their associated costs.

Cost Factors Influencing Recruitment Expenses

Several factors affect how much a recruitment costs:

  1. Salary Level and Seniority:
  2. Compensation level in relation to the candidate's seniority.
  3. Industry-specific salary benchmarks.
  4. Tests and Background Checks: Aptitude tests, personality assessments, and background checks tailored to specific professions (e.g., education, childcare, security, banking).
  5. Advertising Costs: Expenses related to job advertisements.

Recruitment Approaches: Choosing the Right Strategy for Your Company

Different companies opt for various recruitment methods. Larger and rapidly growing companies often have an in-house Talent Acquisition team with established recruitment processes. Other companies seek assistance from recruitment agencies that either handle the entire process or specialize in providing a pool of candidates.Consider the following points before deciding on the short-term and long-term recruitment strategy for your company:

  1. One-Time or Ongoing Recruitment Needs: Determine if you require sporadic or continuous recruitment support.
  2. Company Attractiveness: Assess your company's attractiveness to potential candidates.
  3. Broad Advertisement Reach: Determine whether you need to widely advertise the position or if it requires niche expertise.
  4. Qualification and Experience Evaluation: Assess your ability to evaluate candidates' qualifications and experience.
  5. Cultural Fit: Evaluate your capability to assess if candidates align with your company's culture.

Recruitment costs - three approaches:

(1) In-House Talent Acquisition or HR Department

Recruiting internally makes it challenging to estimate the total cost of hiring. Consider the team's salaries, as well as fixed costs such as office space, tools, and systems. Additional costs include advertising job openings and maintaining a candidate tracking platform. Tale all these into consideration when estimation how much a recruitment costs when handled by an internal team.At TB-Group, we often complement in-house teams by providing a proactive and efficient approach. According to our February 2023 customer survey, 40% of our clients usually handle recruitment in-house using their HR team or managers from other departments. They choose TB-Group to provide candidates to their own team or due to their own team's limited capacity within the process.

(2) Traditional Recruitment Agencies

Most recruitment agencies offer end-to-end services, involving significant engagement from the company's internal resources, such as interviewing screened candidates.The benchmark price for recruitment through traditional agencies is typically around three times the monthly salary. For example, if your company wants to recruit someone with a monthly salary of £5,000, the recruitment agency will charge £15,000 for their services. Generally, the price tag ranges between 15% and 25% of the employee's annual salary.Senior roles may incur higher costs, and additional services like tests can lead to extra charges. Some recruitment agencies include test costs, advertising expenses, and reference checks in addition to the agreed recruitment cost. Review the contract carefully and ensure a clear understanding of all costs. Also, clarify the terms if the hired candidate resigns shortly or if the company is dissatisfied and terminates the employment.Carefully consider whether you truly need assistance with the entire process or if you primarily require support for specific parts.

(3) Search and Headhunting Services

This category involves delivering candidates based on agreed-upon profiles. Companies offering search and headhunting services typically work with a fixed price. Some companies charge a fixed fee based on the complexity of the assignment or a percentage of the candidate's annual salary. Search and headhunting services are suitable for companies seeking highly specialized professionals or executive-level candidates. The cost of search and headhunting services can range from 20% to 35% of the candidate's annual salary.


When determining how much a recruitment costs, several factors come into play, including salary level, seniority, tests, background checks, and advertising expenses. Choosing the right recruitment approach depends on factors such as your company's recruitment needs, attractiveness, advertisement reach, evaluation capabilities, and cultural fit assessment. The three primary approaches discussed are in-house talent acquisition, traditional recruitment agencies, and search and headhunting services. Each approach has its own cost structure and considerations.It's important to thoroughly review contracts, clarify all costs and services, and ensure a clear understanding of the terms. By carefully evaluating your needs and considering the costs and benefits of different recruitment approaches, you can make an informed decision that suits your company's requirements.At TB-Group, we operate within this category but in a different way than our industry colleagues. We charge only £1,900 per month for our search services, challenging the industry with our flexible and cost-effective subscription. This allows both small companies and large corporations to choose to work with us. We can assist with one-time recruitments as well as provide a continuous flow of candidates for companies with ongoing needs.Our packages include continuous screening of candidates based on a job description developed in collaboration with the client. We have extensive experience and specialized departments in areas such as IT/Industry, Finance/Management, Installation/Construction, and Urban Development/Infrastructure. We do not charge a finder's fee and have no binding or termination period. Some of our clients choose to work with us for specific assignments, while others with continuous recruitment needs establish long-term partnerships with us.Feel free to contact us, and we will be happy to provide more information about our approach and listen to your specific recruitment requirements.

External links if you’d like a longer read:

  1. Recruitment & Employment Confederation: The REC often conducts research on the recruitment industry and publishes reports that include data on fees charged by recruitment agencies. 
  2. Staffing Industry Metrics Benchmarking Report: The SIA reports provide comprehensive data and benchmarks for the staffing and recruitment industry. 
  3. Industry Surveys and Insights: Various industry publications and platforms conduct surveys and publish insights on recruitment agency fees. Websites like Recruitment Grapevine or Recruitment International often share industry surveys that may provide specific information on pricing and fees
vad kostar en rekrytering vi reder ut kostnaderna
direkt efter :