Are you wary of inadvertently falling for a recruitment company scam? Most recruitment companies are reliable, helpful, and reputable services -- but there are scams in every industry. In order to avoid potentially falling for one, you'll need to vet companies thoroughly before you begin working with them.

Look for Negative Online Reviews and Testimonials

It's easy to create fake positive reviews and testimonials. It's more difficult to suppress real negative ones. Of course, not all negative reviews are valid: you should read carefully to determine whether there appears to be a common trend. If one or two individuals call a service overpriced, it may just be a matter of opinion. If dozens of people are citing hidden charges without any results, it's more likely to be a scam.

Contact the Better Business Bureau

The BBB tracks outstanding complaints regarding businesses. An absence of BBB complaints doesn't necessarily tell you that a company is reputable (it may simply be new, or no one may have been inclined to make a complaint yet), but a presence of numerous complaints will usually only indicate a scam. The Better Business Bureau furnishes company reports to anyone via their online site and through telephone.

Study Their Contracts and Fee Schedules

Reliable recruitment companies will generally not ask you for any funds upfront. They will offer an initial consultancy free of charge and they will be upfront about their payment schedule. Moreover, they will usually have a fairly simple payment schedule. If the fees appear to be extremely complicated or confusing, it's more likely that they are trying to sneak in hidden charges. A good recruitment company often (though not always) proves its value before being paid, such as by introducing you to ideal candidates.

Beware of Quick Sells

In general, the more you're pressured to make a commitment right away, the more likely it is to be a scam. Be wary of any recruitment agency who wants you to immediately sign a contract. This is usually indicative of a concern that you won't sign the contract once you have done more research. Your agency should be fine with you taking the time to consider your options.

A reliable recruitment company can add significant value to any enterprise -- you just need to be careful who you work with. A good recruitment company will operate as a partner to you, giving your services that you need to thrive.