Getting Headhunted on LinkedIn
in Changing Jobs, Job Applications

Getting Headhunted on LinkedIn

‘I’ve been approached on LinkedIn and offered considerably more money to take a role elsewhere than my current job. Should I agree to be headhunted for the role?’


If you are not regularly approached on LinkedIn by recruitment consultants offering you huge amounts of money to change jobs you probably are not very experienced at getting outlandish job offers which seem too good to be true. Unfortunately in the vast majority of cases they are too good to be true and the headhunters are essentially trying to catch your eye by offering you extraordinary amounts of money to do the same job you do currently for a lot more money elsewhere.

The harsh reality is that there are scores of recruitment agencies out there who exist simply by scrolling through LinkedIn profiles and sending out emails to those people who loosely fit a description.


Take a recent approach I received. As well as the founder of TP Transcription Limited I am also Managing Director of Ten Percent Legal Recruitment, a qualified solicitor and I’ve been running my own business for over 20 years. A recruitment consultant in London got in touch with me to offer me a job for £200,000 plus bonus to take over partner level recruitment within another recruitment agency. She informed me that I was perfectly matched for the role in question.

Firstly the problem with this approach is that in order to pay me £200,000 plus a bonus the recruitment agency will almost certainly be expecting me to be generating about £600,000 in fees on an annual basis. Whilst this may seem quite possible, the reality is for most recruitment consultants this is about four or five times the norm and it would take quite an exceptional recruitment consultant to be generating these types of fees (and most certainly not me!).

Secondly the sort of recruitment she had in mind for me was partner recruitment in central London, something our company has traditionally struggled with and something that requires you to be in a very small group of lawyers and friends in order to be able to operate effectively within. I am based in North Wales, and although I service clients across the country I am not in the circle of trust that exists for Magic Circle partners moving from one role to another.

Lovely Warm Feeling

Take heart however. It is a lovely feeling to get such an approach.It can really boost your self-confidence to have a call from someone who thinks you are worth contacting on behalf of one of their clients.

Recently started a job? Increased headhunting opportunities

In the legal sector there is a current phenomenon of recruiters contacting conveyancing solicitors who have recently changed jobs to offer them a higher paid job elsewhere. NB this is in part because there is a shortage of residential conveyancers prepared to take permanent roles in the UK. The offering tends to be £10,000 – £20,000 more than they have just agreed with their new firm. This tends to breed a lot of uncertainty amongst the new recruits, who worry that they have pitched too low. Of course these figures are usually made up and concocted simply to lure the candidate to attend an interview! Candidates also run the risk of a current employer finding out they are looking.


Our advice to anyone who receives a headhunting approach via LinkedIn is to just put it into perspective, take a breather, don’t do anything rash and think about whether or not you really do want to look any further at it or whether you are feeling a little bit flattered to be offered this sort of money and to be headhunted for a role. The reality is often that a recruitment agent has trawled LinkedIn, found anyone vaguely resembling a potential match and then paid LinkedIn quite a bit of money to send them all a message telling them how wonderful they are.

Sometimes this can be beneficial to everybody and placements do happen off the back of this kind of approach, but in the vast majority of cases it is simply a speculative approach.

Jonathan Fagan is Managing Director of Ten Percent Legal Recruitment and (rightly or wrongly) tries wherever possible to avoid LinkedIn approaches because over the years we’ve been doing it it just seems a thankless task and almost akin to cold calling!

Jonathan Fagan

Jonathan Fagan LLM FIRP is Managing Director of Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment. He has been recruiting solicitors and legal support staff for law firms and in house legal departments for over 20 years and handles roles from junior fee earners through to partners and law firm sales/purchases. A non-practising solicitor on the Roll since 2000, he is also the author of a number of legal career books, which are available at You can contact Jonathan at