In the last 30 years, we’ve heard this story many times in discussions with client prospects:
“We haven’t had very good luck with staffing agencies in the past. Our last experience was not good – we had a class of 18, filled just 9 and only 3 converted to permanent status.”
When asked how many agencies were utilized – the answer is often “one”. Is this scenario a bad strategy of utilizing outsourced staffing or poor execution by the staffing agency?
When staffing agencies say, “we can fill all your positions because we are one of the largest staffing agencies and have more recruiters”, they are making this recommendation based on what is in their best interests, not yours.
Structuring the Right Relationship
Here’s how you should structure your staffing agency relationships to make sure you are viewed you as a Top Priority Client:
- Build in competition - it keeps agencies on their toes and gets you the best candidates. Make sure you have more than 1 agency if your needs exceed 5 people at a time. Remember, large agencies do have the most recruiters, but they also have multiple large clients who all have candidate needs on a regular basis.
- Engage the right number of agencies for your needs. If you need 2 candidates and you have 10 agencies competing against each other, guess how many of these 10 agencies will have you as their top priority? Answer: none.
- Allocate work to get the best candidates, not just the fastest. Its tempting to give all open positions to every agency on a ‘first come, first serve’ basis. But this process doesn’t always get you the best candidates, just the fastest or most available candidates. It’s much better to allocate position fill responsibilities to the agencies. For example, if there are 6 positions --agency A gets assigned 3 and agency B gets 3. This process gets you the best 3 candidates from each agency.
Follow the above tips to make sure you get the attention your business deserves. In the next post in this series topic, we’ll discuss whether your staffing agency is doing the job, or you are doing it for them.