Recruitment firms.

For many companies, getting outside recruiting support is a vital part of running the business.

And there’s no doubt that a third-party recruiting firm can be a very valuable asset. They can greatly assist with recruiting the right people and building a better business.

But with over 20 years of experience in this space, we can assure you that not all recruitment firms are created equal…

And unfortunately, countless companies find themselves SOL on talent acquisition because they didn’t take the right steps to ensure a successful agreement with a third-party.

If you’ve never worked with a recruitment firm or are re-evaluating your third-party recruiter, this article is for you. We’re breaking down a few key ideas that companies should keep in mind when using outside recruiting support.

Some Recruitment Firms’ Fees Are Daylight Robbery

We know that sounds dramatic but think about it.

Many firms charge upfront fees before they even get started on a search. For executive search that fee could be as much as $5,000.

Why should the client pay a recruitment firm thousands of dollars before they’ve received anything of value?

Same goes for a lot of RPO agreements with recruitment firms. Many RPO providers will charge their clients a certain percentage for every hire they make. That includes referrals and internal promotions made without the help of the agency.

Again, why should the client pay a recruitment firm for hires that the agency had nothing to do with?

This certainly isn’t the case for every recruitment firm. But if you’re considering getting third-party support, be mindful about what you’re paying for and when.

Here at Qualigence, we pride ourselves on our hourly, non-commissioned recruiting model. Our clients pay for our time and expertise, no more, no less.

Recruitment Firms May Not Share Your Idea of a Successful Project

It’s easy to assume that everyone is on the same page about what a successful recruiting project looks like.

But if you’ve worked in recruiting or hiring then you know expectations can greatly differ.

It’s important to make sure upfront that everyone is using the same metrics for success.

For many recruiting firms, one of the most important metrics is time-to-fill. But internally, time-to-fill is likely to be secondary to quality-of-hire.

90% of the time, a hiring manager would rather take their time with the process and get a hire who works out long-term.

Other metrics come into play as well – is your recruitment firm prioritizing cost-per-hire? Candidate experience? Vacancies versus positions filled? Diversity requirements?

There’s no right or wrong answers here. Every company, team and hiring manager will have different priorities when it comes to recruiting.

The key is to make sure your recruitment firm completely understand what your priorities are. Furthermore, the firm needs to work to deliver on those priorities to the best of their ability.

Define clear metrics around success so that everyone is agreement on your goals for each recruiting project. You get what you measure!

A Recruitment Firm May Affect Candidate Experience

If you’ve never worked with a recruitment firm before, it’s important to understand how a third-party might effect your candidate experience.

Candidate experience is an often overlooked but crucial part of the recruiting process.

If you have a positive candidate experience, your long-term recruiting prospects are far stronger. Candidates will be more likely to apply again down the road or consider future opportunities.

The right recruitment firm will have a solid understanding of your business. They’ll have a firm grasp on your goals, your industry, and your target talent market. They’ll leverage that knowledge along with their recruiting expertise to provide an exceptional experience to candidates.

Nobody knows your business quite like you do. But it’s essential that you find a recruitment firm that understands your line of work. If someone doesn’t understand your industry, they will frustrate and irritate candidates.

Just look at how candidates respond to tech recruiters that don’t know the difference between Java and JavaScript.

When you’re first engaging with a recruitment firm, ask thoughtful questions. Make sure they really, truly understand your industry and your needs.

Choose Wisely and Consider the Value You Get for Your Money

A recruiting firm can be an incredible asset for your business, or it can be a total waste of time. The key is in paying attention and thinking very critically about what you get for your money.

Recruiting is not just a transactional function in HR or talent acquisition. It’s literally the future of your business. That’s why it’s so important to get it right!

If you’re looking to make hires that drive real value over time, make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel. We cover practical tips and advice for sourcing candidates, making better hires, and improving the recruiting process.