Debunking 9 Myths About Recruitment Agency In Malaysia

Explore the truths behind recruitment agency myths. Here are nine stereotypes believed by Malaysian employers and employees.

Myths about the recruitment agency have been there since this industry developed. Chances are, you might believe one or two hearsays about recruitment firms. Most likely, these stereotypes make you hesitate to work with them. In this post, we've gathered some common myths about recruiters from both clients and candidates.

We will change how you think by debunking these 9 myths believed by Malaysians.

From an Employer's Point of View

Myth #1: Recruitment agency only provides maid services

Malaysians assume recruitment firms only assist in hiring domestic helpers. This is one of the biggest misconceptions of recruitment agencies. Every employment agency must include ‘Agensi Pekerjaan’ before the company’s name. This is one of the amendments to the Private Employment Agencies Act 1981 in Malaysia.

So, a recruitment firm can hire workers for domestic and other industries. This depends on their license and business objectives. Both recruiting activities have different application processes and eligibility conditions.

For example, only females are eligible to work as housemaids. But, industrial sectors allow both genders to work. For more information, visit the official website of the Immigration Department of Malaysia.

Myth #2: All recruiting agents are the same

Employers perceive that recruiters are irresponsible and unethical. This is because workers supplied by them are not well recruited. Another popular stereotype is that recruitment agencies discriminate against foreign workers. Not all recruitment companies are the same. For instance, JM Ching Management provide good facilities for foreign workers. This includes accommodation, transportation and medical services.

Also, they ensure all services abide by the latest rules and regulations. As such, the hostels provided to their employees comply with the Workers' Minimum Standards of Housing and Amenities (Amendment) Act 2019.

Myth #3: Recruitment agencies don't understand my industry

Malaysian employers usually think that recruiters don't understand their vacant role. Specifically, the skillsets to look for in a candidate. Thus, recruiters tend to offer jobs to any job-seeker. Every recruitment company is an industry expert. Some may specialise in the administration field while some specialise in construction. So, you need to look for a recruitment firm within your business niche. Make sure they have solid staffing experiences in your sector as well.

Recruitment agencies have a wide range of databases filled with qualified candidates. So, your job openings can be filled faster. Also, they have a better understanding of the job markets and salary ranges. This can promote your vacancy effectively.

Myth #4: Only companies without an HR Department can engage with a recruitment agency

It's easy to think that if you have an internal hiring team, you don't need help from a recruitment company. Successful business leaders choose to outsource a recruitment agency as well. Yes, even when they have great hiring managers on board.

Recruiting experts can handle the hiring process from seeking candidates to recruiting them. Hence, HR team members are not burdened by hours of interviews or massive piles of resumes.

They can shift their focus on other priorities than worry about the next best hiring.

Myth #5: Engaging with recruiters are costly

More often than not, employers believe it costs too much money to use a recruitment agency. Hiring without a recruitment agency might cost you more in terms of:

  1. Overtime pays to:
    a. Craft the right job descriptions
    b. Screen resumes
    c. Conduct interviews
  2. The job advertisement on job-hunting platforms
  3. Productivity loss
  4. Bad hiring

Plus, bad hiring decision results in 80% of employee turnover.

Let's say you hire an entry-level staff with a monthly salary of 1,200 MYR. If the employee is not the right fit, it may cost your company up to 7,200 MYR!

But with only a 15% recruitment fee, you will receive a well-targeted candidate for the same salary. Yet, this will only cost you 2,160 MYR!

Thus, you can save more money when using a recruitment agency. The belief of recruitment agencies are expensive is a total misunderstanding.

Myth #6: Recruitment agency won’t be around much longer

Society believes a recruitment agency is no longer needed in future. Especially when there are job-hunting platforms to post vacancies online. Plus, free templates for job descriptions are available as well. It takes more than just a job advertisement to find the best candidate. You need a candidate that fits into your company culture well. Therefore, human-to-human interaction is very important to guarantee so.

From an Employee's Point of View

Myth #1: Recruitment agencies provide unskilled and semi-skilled labours only

This notion is due to continuous supply by recruiters for manual labour industries. Job openings offered by a recruiter can range from skilled to unskilled. This depends on their client, which is the employer.

Every recruiting agent is an industry specialist. Thus, it is important for you to consult with a recruiter that knows your industry well.

For example, you plan to build a career on the manufacturing floor. So, you need to look for a recruiter who supplies continuous workers in that field.

Myth #2: Agents gain their commissions from employee’s salaries or wages cut

Due to this belief, job-seekers refuse to apply for jobs through recruiting agents. They fear they'll experience a salary cut as a commission for recruiters.

It is long believed that the more employees a recruiter provides for a firm, the more profit they'll get. Recruiting agents do get paid on commission. But, they are paid by their clients which are the employers. They don't make any income through the employee’s salary or wage cut.

Myth #3: Job seekers have to pay consultation fees with recruiters

To avoid the service fee, job hunters refuse to consult with recruiters at all costs. You'll get services provided by a recruitment firm for no charge at all. This includes resume reviews, interview tips, career expectations, salary rates and more. Recruiting agents will help you gain more understanding of your potential career.

Thus, it's important to maintain a good relationship with your recruiter. You'll get recommended jobs that suit your interest and qualification. Plus, you have a higher chance to be a top tier candidate to fill the vacancy.


The role of recruitment agencies is becoming more essential in the industry. Hence, it’s time to put an end to these recruiting firms stereotypes.

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