How do recruitment agencies work?

Don’t be like this! Great video though :)

Finding the perfect recruit or developer for your organization isn’t as simple as it once was. Let’s face it, just like with dating, you’ve got to kiss a few frogs before you meet your prince charming. Unless you hire a boutique recruiting firm and save all the stress and frustration of hiring the wrong tech candidate.

As new specialties emerge, and skill sets become more refined, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for businesses to fill positions, with 65% recruiters claiming talent shortage as their biggest threat to hiring and human resource management.

Employers hire recruitment agencies to find candidates for their open jobs. Agency recruiters do this by researching the open roles, identifying qualified people, screening the candidates, and providing support to the employer during selection of the new hire.

Recruitment agencies are commonly confused with employment agencies. However, they are not the same thing; recruitment agencies serve employers, and employment agencies serve job seekers.

Recruitment agencies structure their services and fees in several ways, including:

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Why work with an agency?

In today’s highly competitive, candidate-driven job market, finding and hiring the ideal job candidate is quite hard. This is why many companies turn to recruitment agencies to help them recruit the right people for their open job positions.

Different companies work with recruitment agencies to fill different needs. Typical reasons include:

  • Providing support to hiring managers if there is no internal recruiting or human resources team
  • Identifying hard to find or highly-specialized talent
  • Finding job candidates from outside the company’s own networks of people
  • Assisting in-house recruiter during a hiring spree or growth spurt
  • Maintaining confidentiality during a sensitive search
  • Replacing altogether the need for an in-house recruiting function

Many agency recruiters are able to identify resumes that match the skills, abilities and experience required by a role. However, employers now emphasize the need to hire employees who fit their corporate values, vision and culture.

Boutique recruiting agencies, in my opinion, can make a huge difference (Yes, I’m biased here).

Nowadays, we’re sure you don’t have the time (or the patience) to go through recruitment processes and interview thousands of applicants who might meet their criteria. At the end of the day, time is money. You’d rather spend your time somewhere else than going through interviews with candidates that make you want to smash your head against the wall.

That’s why recruitment agencies are so beneficial to small and medium companies. However, just as no two job applicants are the same, you’ll find that some recruitment agencies are more effective than others.

In most circumstances, when you begin to search for the answer to your staffing problems, the obvious place to start is with the biggest brand names. You know — those omnipresent providers you’re always hearing about (aka Randstad, Adecco, Aerotek). They seem to etch their way into your brain. But that doesn’t make them the best choice. In fact, there are plenty of reasons why boutique recruitment agencies might be better for your business and your future.

After all, it’s not the size that counts, it’s what you do with it…

What Differentiates “Boutique” Recruitment Agencies?

In 2018, 72% of employers manifested a difficulty in finding qualified candidates for the positions they needed to fill. This is often associated with talent shortage (67% of recruiters attribute this to an increasing talent shortage), but the reason why finding great talent is so challenging is that using human resource recruitment often doesn’t work. Especially when the niche is specific, like tech, traditional recruiters are not the best option.

Of course, finding the perfect employee isn’t as easy as choosing your favorite pizza toppings. To thrive in this modern age, it takes someone with a thorough understanding of everything from temp agencies to remote working.

The important thing to realize is that IT recruitment agencies aren’t just the “middle man” between a company and an employee. Recruitment is an art, and the cookie-cutter approach to finding job applicants doesn’t really fit into this new economy of versatile jobs, remote working, telework jobs, and worldwide connectivity.

This is where boutique recruitment companies are showing their true value. Boutique firms apply individual methodologies to the recruitment process, tailoring it to the individual client, and role available. Like the modern work environment, these staffing companies have more flexibility in their ability to search for talent, meaning you get the “right”, employee, rather than the “right now” candidate.

IT recruitment agencies like Nxt Level thrive on getting to know our clients inside and out, understanding their business, and culture, for a hiring fit that not only reflects key talents and skills, but also cultural drive. According to a Deloitte study, 94% of executives and 88% of employees believe that cultural fit is crucial to any hire.

You need to make sure that the person you hire isn’t just someone you can see building profits for your business — but someone you’d be happy to go for a beer with, or ask for advice from..

With a boutique agency like us, the full recruitment process is less diluted by the presence of inexperienced staff, or panicked hives of busy workers, which can occur in larger agencies. The boutique nature of the company creates a more intimate, attentive experience, leading to a greater chance of finding the best talent in a competitive market. That means that you get the perfect fit.

Recruiting an informed candidate is vital! Agencies can help provide insight, tips, and tricks before a candidate even commits.

Money = Time

Taking too long to hire the right people to work on a project can cost you more money in potential revenue loss, than the wages that employee might cost. Therefore, having a network of pre-qualified candidates is vital.

Sometimes, a pre-existing network isn’t available for even staffing agencies. So, why would they be “faster?” Let’s say that a recruiting agency needs to start a search from scratch…is your team going to pick up the phone to smile and dial aggressively? If the answer is no, that’s a pretty big difference between a staffing agency and an internal recruitment team focused on employer branding and inbound applications strolling in.

Reaching the Unreachable

Boutique employment agencies will often be willing to consider and seek out candidates that other recruitment agencies, or traditional job sites would be unwilling to address. One of the biggest benefits of working with a specialist recruiter, is that they can penetrate passive markets and discover the candidate that fits your role perfectly. These are the people that really go above and beyond, after all — you deserve the best, right?

Millions of job seekers can apply to jobs through one click thanks to the internet. While this may sound great, most of them probably don’t match the job description. This quantity of applicants is overwhelming. Specialized niches need trained recruiters that bring the right candidates.

Boutique agencies know where to find the best talent. They don’t just analyze resumes, they headhunt, which means they have lists of pre-analyzed candidates they actively search for. This way, the hiring process is much faster.

That also means that you can bypass the HR management restrictions of things like location, and even look into remote jobs, and telecommute opportunities that might allow you to take talent from other competitors in your industry.

This basically helps you find better people faster.

Sometimes, teams don’t have a dedicated in-house recruiting team

Some companies, such as startups and small companies, don’t have a dedicated in-house recruiter. These companies lack the expertise and resources to find and hire the best candidates. To ensure that their hiring process is done professionally and effectively, they choose to use the services of recruitment agencies. If you don’t know how to recruit in a highly professional manner, it is best to leave it to experts from recruitment agencies.

Retain your new hires

For many companies, the most important advantage of using a recruitment agency instead of in-house recruiters, is that recruitment agencies offer additional security when it comes to new hire retention. All the best recruitment agencies offer guarantee periods. This means that they guarantee you that your new hire will stay at your company for a certain period of time (usually 3–6 months). If your new hire is terminated or leaves before the expiry of a guarantee period, recruitment agencies will give you a full refund or, most commonly, find a new, replacement candidate for no extra charge.

In short, choosing the right recruitment agency can help you recruit and retain the right people faster and even cheaper!

Conclusion: Should you use a recruitment agency or recruit by yourself?

Honestly, this depends on the horse power that you already have internally. Have you invested in a robust team that knows your business inside and out with a massive network? If the answer is yes, maybe you only need an agency for very selective niche roles that’s going to be more of a distraction for your top recruiters than a good use of their time.

There is a time and a place when agencies aren’t needed. However, if time is of the essence pick up the phone and get some support. It’s kind like that quote from that one movie, “who ya gonna call?” My hope, not ghostbusters :)

Founder @ | Blogger | Sourcing Ninja | Recruiter | Ex-@Facebook, Ex-@Zillow | Consultant | Entrepreneur | Startup Junky

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