Every headhunter seems to have a core specialty: some are good with Private Equity and others are good with Hedge Funds. Knowing who the best are is important: you’ll need to impress them!
Recruiters, or headhunters, play a large part in the Hedge Fund job search process. These recruiting firms’ source top candidates for hedge fund interviews and are called the “gatekeepers” of the hedge fund world.
Traditionally recruiters work with top-ranked first year analysts at an investment bank or consulting firm. You will have to decide if the recruiters are calling you with the jobs you want. For those of you that do not receive phone calls from headhunters, it doesn’t mean you are not desirable; It means you may have to reach out to the recruiters yourself.
Every headhunter seems to have a core specialty: some are good with Private Equity and others are good with Hedge Funds. Knowing who the best are is important: you’ll need to impress them! Some of the best known hedge fund recruiters include Dynamics, Glocap, Search One, and Oxbridge.
You should reach out to headhunters during November – December timeframe and should expect to start interviewing in January – March. Once you have reached out to a HF recruiter or contacted by one, you will be invited into one of their locations. You will be put through a “mini-interview” which is just as important as the actual interviews with a private equity firm since the recruiters are the so-called gatekeepers to the HF firms. Most of these recruiter interviews consist of behavioral questions such as:
– Walk me through your resume and past deal experience.
– Why do you want to work at a Hedge Fund firm?
– What type of private equity investing are you interested in?
– Any particular firms you are interested in? Size of fund?
– Do you have excellent financial modeling skills?
– What type of investment banking transactions or consulting projects have you worked on?
– In terms of geography, what are your three top locations (cities) in the US you would be willing to relocate?
Make sure not to give any attitude or act “cocky”. They have met candidates like you year after year and have no patience for an overconfident first-year analyst. You are one of many candidates that headhunting firms work with, you need to feel confident about being a strong candidate. Displaying an attitude that shows “you will make money off of me” is not a good way to get the attention you want. If you pass this initial step, your resume will be submitted for various HF positions and you will most likely have an interview in the next 10 to 20 days. Don’t forget that before reaching out to these recruiters, you must be preparing for the actual important HF interview as you could be placed in an interview in a shorter period of time. There are no second chances out there so make sure you are well prepared.