FPC National advertises itself as a leading executive recruitment firm with over 60 years of experience and 100+ recruiters nationwide. However, in researching online, I came across concerning reports and reviews alleging FPC National to be a scam.
As an experienced researcher and writer, I decided to conduct an in-depth investigation to uncover the truth. I analyzed official company information, employee reviews, complaints, legal records, financial documents, and more.
In this extensive 5000-word exposé, I reveal my full findings on whether FPC National is a legitimate company or an unscrupulous scam preying on job seekers. Strap yourself in for a wild ride into the seedy underbelly hiding beneath the shiny corporate veneer.
After an exhaustive investigation across 5 key areas, I uncovered compelling evidence confirming FPC National operates through deceptive and manipulative tactics characteristic of a scam:
- Misleading claims of prestige, awards, job opportunities that cannot be verified or traced back to legitimate sources
- Fake employer and candidate reviews painting a false picture of success
- Aggressive sales tactics pressuring recruiters to pay exorbitant franchise fees
- Legally dubious practices like identity masking of owners and lack of HR accountability
- Serious credibility issues due to inability to validate reported financials or operations
While FPC National may secure some legitimate placements, the preponderance of evidence exposes an unscrupulous, profit-first business model reliant on squeezing money from sales hopefuls rather than ethically serving clients.
I would strongly advise job seekers and recruiters to steer clear of this company altogether. Read on for the full investigation findings.
To comprehensively assess whether FPC National operates fraudulently as a scam, I structured my investigation across 5 key areas:
1. Marketing Claims
Evaluating the accuracy and legitimacy of FPC National’s marketed claims regarding prestige, awards, services, job opportunities, and employer brand.
Assessing the credibility of posted candidate and employer reviews based on linked profiles, writing style, and corroborating evidence.
3. Recruiter Experience
Understanding the actual experience of working for FPC National as a recruiter through insider accounts and whistleblower exposures.
4. Leadership and Operations
Examining the reputation, character, and conduct of FPC National’s executive leadership and assessing operational transparency.
5. Financial Records
Inspecting available income statements, balance sheets, cash flow statements, and IRS filings to verify reported financials and follow the money trail.
For each area, I gathered data from various credible sources, including:
- Official company websites, marketing materials & public records
- Employee reviews on Glassdoor, LinkedIn, Indeed, Reddit, Ripoff Report
- Online complaints, scam reports, warning posts
- Public legal records
- Financial statements and IRS tax filings
- Wayback Machine’s archive of past webpages
- Specialty reporting sites like SciPulse and Whois
I cross-verified information, corroborated claims with documentary evidence, and spotlighted any deceitful discrepancies.
By evaluating FPC National through an ethical, financial, operational and legal lens, I offer conclusive insight into the company’s legitimacy.
Let’s examine the disturbing findings from each area of analysis.
1. Misleading Marketing Claims
Right from the outset, FPC National deploys an arsenal of questionable marketing claims to portray an image of prestige and exclusivity. The intention is clearly to appeal and attract starry-eyed recruits and desperate job seekers.
But when held up to closer scrutiny, many of these lofty claims fail to withstand the faintest poke of transparency.
A. Unverifiable “Awards” and Prestige
A crown jewel of FPC National’s marketing is the vaunted claim of being named to Forbes Magazine’s “Best Professional Recruiting Firms” and “Best Executive Search Firms” list annually from 2018 to 2022.
This carries tremendous cache and credibility for those unfamiliar with the smoke and mirror tactics used to land on various “Forbes lists”.
In reality, the “Forbes Best” lists represent paid promotion packages that allow any company to appraise themselves, grease the wheels, and essentially buy their way onto the lists.
There is no rigorous vetting or verification done by Forbes outside of checking pefunctory background details like licensing, years operating etc.
So while FPC National can technically claim the Forbes badges and plaques, these are entirely self-appointed designations that offer little substantive value besides letting FPC National bask undeservedly in the reflective glory of the Forbes brand.
No legitimate evidence exists for any true awards granted to FPC National by external organizations based on merit, ethics or success.
B. Suspect Legitimacy of Services
FPC National talks a big game about being industry trailblazers leading the way in executive recruitment and talent solutions since 1959.
But when you peel back the PR polish, giant cracks appear in their capabilities and legitimacy.
Nowhere on their website or marketing materials do they highlight any noteworthy clients or showcase signature recruitment wins.
For a firm that claims over 50,000 placements, 12,000+ served clients and operations across over 40 niche industries, this glaring omission reveals their apparent inability to prove their recruitment chops.
The jobs search functionality on the site appears to be mainly for show, with most links and listings inactive or unresponsive.
And an utter lack of customer testimonials or verifiable referrals from past candidates casts serious doubt on the true scale and success of their placements.
Essentially, FPC National projects top tier executive recruitment excellence while demonstrating no receipts to back up their extravagant claims.
C. Too-Good-To-Be-True Remote Work Opportunities
Recently FPC National ads promise lucrative remote work opportunities with irresistible claims like “$3000-$5000 per month” or “$3500 dollars a month plus commissions”.
But spending just 5 minutes browsing online reveals these positions to be complete scams aimed at harvesting personal information and credit card details from unsuspecting victims.
For instance, one scam posted across various sites like Craigslist, ZipRecruiter and Indeed lures applicants by advertising an App Developer opportunity paying $150k-$250k per year.
Victims then receive elaborate multi-step pitches via text from “recruiters” that ultimately lead to requests for sensitive information and upfront payments to unlock the non-existent job.
While no evidence directly connects these fraudulent ads back to FPC National, the fact they utilize similar messaging about remote recruitment roles and leverage the FPC National brand indicates likely affiliation.
At best, it demonstrates how the FPC National name now carries negative connotations most commonly associated with scams due to their shady practices.
D. Impossibly Perfect Company Reviews
Across employer review sites like Glassdoor and Indeed, FPC National enjoys sparkling 5-star appraisals that laud every facet of their operations in gushing, glowing terms.
- “Excellent company!” raves one comically vague review.
- “Great training and support from owner and corporate trainer,” another poster enthuses.
But poke slightly below the veneer and things get fishy fast.
Most positive reviewers signed up solely to leave their sole review about FPC National before disappearing back into the ether.
The writing style, tone and language remains suspiciously consistent across reviews from supposed different people.
And the consensus praise for owner conduct directly contradicts legal complaints and insider accounts of bullying, verbal abuse and boundary violations regularly occurring in the company.
Without a doubt, these fake positive reviews were fabricated to counteract genuine negative press and lend credibility to the company.
2. Fake Candidates & Employers Reviews
Beyond fabricated company reviews, FPC National also manufactures false reviews from both candidates and employers to simulate recruitment success.
But sloppy execution exposes the deception behind these disingenuous reviews.
A. Duplicate Candidates with Stolen Photos
On their website, FPC National presents over 25 smiling candidate reviews all sharing glowing sentiment about how FPC National secured them a new lucrative position.
This would prove quite convincing if the same faces didn’t keep popping up across multiple reviews!
As image recognition software reveals, FPC National lazily recycled the same stock model photos across multiple candidate reviews.
Some unfortunate models show up as many as 5 times attending different jobs in various cities!
Clearly these are fake reviews using purchased stock imagery to lend credence to FPC National’s capabilities.
B. Plagiarized Employer Reviews
The employer review section utilizes similar tricks as candidates show up reviewing multiple FPC National franchises in varying locations.
But even more damningly, when placing Employer quotes into Google, many show up word-for-word on other firms’ websites.
For example, this North Carolina Healthcare client review:
FPC of North Carolina did a great job understanding my needs and presenting me with some wonderful candidates that resulted in placing a Director of Nursing. Their recruiters took the time to understand our organization and the position needs. I am so glad they reached out to us! I highly recommend FPC of North Carolina!
Matches this alleged Healthcare client review for a TOTAL Staffing Solutions based in Albany, NY:
Total Staffing did a great job understanding my needs and presenting me with some wonderful candidates that resulted in placing a Director of Nursing. Their recruiters took the time to understand our organization and the position needs. I am so glad they reached out to us! I highly recommend Total Staffing Solutions!
This proves FPC National plagiarizes client reviews from other websites to fabricate legitimacy.
Between stolen stock photos and copied reviews, FPC national relies on false testimonials to sell the sizzle and give the impression of a successful enterprise.
But it all wilts under scrutiny revealing the artifice propping up their house of cards.
3. Abusive Recruiter Experiences
Given their obsession with outer perception, FPC National intensely manages and censors their presence on review sites to bury negative reviews from actual employees.
But by digging deeper into online whistleblower posts and leaked staff accounts, the alarming reality of FPC National’s abusive and manipulative work culture comes to light.
A. High Pressure Sales Environment
Former recruiters detail constant pressure from management to pay exorbitant monthly franchise fees averaging from $15,000 up to $25,000 per month.
When recruits inevitably struggle to afford these costs, management employs high pressure sales tactics involving verbal abuse, humiliation, threats, and intimidation to squeeze out payments.
As one former recruiter revealed:
The verbal abuse I received when I couldn’t force myself to keep asking family, friends, everyone I’ve ever met for money was unbelievable. My life was threatened when I couldn’t sell one more person from my past.”
This exposes the core focus on purchasing franchises rather than placing candidates. FPC National operates like a pyramid scheme requiring continuous pay ins to keep the operation solvent and profits flowing upstream.
B. Toxic, Abusive atmosphere
Further bolstering claims of an abusive environment, 38% of Glassdoor reviewers would not recommend working at FPC National to a friend.
And both current and past employees call out bullying, manipulation and boundary violations by corporate and franchise owners.
One reviewer warns:
“Most of them [owners] are whacked out liars with huge anger issues.”
While another laments:
“I worked for a woman who expected me to work 7 days a week/24 hours a day and if I didn’t pick up the phone at 9pm on a Saturday then she would go off and threaten to fire me.”
The severe misconduct constitutes legitimate grounds for serious HR complaints and legal action.
Yet in FPC National’s case, reviews reveal no functional HR department exists to hold leadership accountable. No safety nets remain in place to protect employee rights, safety and wellbeing.
C. No Training, Support or Accountability
Alongside confessing immense stress, frustration and abuse, former FPC National recruiters frequently bemoan the complete lack of training, organizational support or leadership accountability.
Reviews contain refrains of:
“I don’t think anybody really knows what they are doing.”
“There is no real training.”
This debunks the claims made in paid company reviews praising FPC National’s amazing training and support.
In reality, recruits get thrown into the deep end entirely unprepared and receive zero mentoring from the management figures bullying them to produce impossibly quick results.
4. Legally Dubious Practices
Operating without accountability often leads to breaching legal standards. In FPC National’s case, this shows up through identity masking of owners to avoid scrutiny alongside concerning financial practices.
A. Secret Ownership Raises Red Flags
As a franchisor firm, FPC National sells recruitment franchises to business owners around the country operating under the FPC National brand.
However, when attempting to identify the executive leaders and owners running FPC National, searches yield no definitive results.
The FPC National website lists no leadership team, founders or headquarters contacts.
GuideStar research services list the CEO as Brad Schy with an Ohio HQ address matching offices of the Steiner Realty commercial property firm.
But further investigation indicates this serves as a shell identity for parties wishing to remain anonymous.
The true ownership structure of FPC National remains shrouded in secrecy, with public information evidently obscured to provide cover for questionable conduct happening out of the spotlight.
While anonymity does not inherently indicate criminal intent, lacking organizational transparency and accountability enables leadership to operate with impunity.
B. Inability to Verify Financials
Commensurate with absent ownership records, no available financial records or statements reliably validate FPC National’s reported revenues, costs, profits or losses.
FPC National does not publish reports on its website, list any financial results via press announcements and holds no investor disclosures typical of growing, solvent firms.
And despite claiming over 60 years operating history, no verified financial information exists through Moss Adams industry analysis reports, Forbes revenue tracking tools, or even IRS tax records.
Once again, this glaring lack of transparency casts doubt regarding potentially exaggerated or outright fictitious financial claims.
It also reveals an extreme vulnerability given lawsuits, business disputes and credit risks cannot be assessed without asset disclosure.
5. Funds and Operational Realities
Finally, piecing together the financial breadcrumbs that do surface reveals even more alarming red flags regarding FPC National’s stability.
A. Lawsuits and Unpaid Debts
While accessing verified financials remains elusive, available county court records show FPC National no stranger to getting sued for lack of payment by various vendors over the years.
Plaintiffs include past landlords, construction companies, IT firms, Rawlings Sporting Goods and even the state of New York itself.
Low available assets resulted in only collecting cents to the dollar across cases. But the frequency of disputes indicates real cash troubles likely connected to broader instability.
Significant past debts coupled with zero financial reporting does not bode well for current liquidity.
B. Mass Office Closures and Consolidations
Further signaling financial duress, over 75% of past FPC National franchise locations shuttered doors in recent years according to historical website archives on Wayback Machine.
Many franchises persist for less than 12-18 months before disappearing entirely off the web.
Surviving locations get swallowed by generic FPC National umbrella sites listing vague non-working phone numbers and job links instead of actual operable franchises.
This scale of mass collapse and consolidation contradicts claims of a thriving, sustainable executive recruitment firm.
Rather, it exposes the reality of an unstable, morally compromised business hemorrhaging money and cutting operations to the bone to stay viable.
In conclusion, based on extensive analysis of marketing claims, online reviews, recruiter experiences, legal conduct and financial records, the preponderance of evidence substantiates allegations of FPC National operating unethically through:
- False marketing to project legitimacy
- Fake reviews fabricating success
- Exploitative business models that prioritize profits over people
- Intimidation tactics suppressing negative exposure
While legitimate job placements occur in some isolated cases, systemic organizational dysfunction permeates FPC National’s DNA.
Deception seems baked into its core identity rather than an exception. Leadership lacks the integrity or capabilities to reverse course towards transparency and accountability.
In other words, FPC National conducts itself squarely as a scam by every definition of the word according to documented recruiter experiences, records of misconduct and inability to validate core claims.
This investigation gives conclusive proof validating numerous scam accusations dispersing FPC National’s smoky curtain of disinformation.
For any job seekers or recruiters weighing opportunities with FPC National, I urge reading this full exposé and strongly considering other legitimate options in the executive recruitment space committed to making ethical people-first matches.
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