6 Crucial Questions to Ask Recruitment Agencies When Outsourcing Hiring

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As the economy continues to recover from the losses caused by the pandemic, more and more organizations are looking to hire.

And even as some employers may try to do it themselves, many others are looking to partner with an established, successful recruiter to help quickly fill the open positions at their company. This is one of the key reasons why the demand for recruiters has rapidly increased.

Source: LinkedIn Talent Blog

Outsourcing recruitment can be the most productive way to find new and permanent employees. However, if you’ve never worked with recruiting agencies before, finding one that meets your specific hiring needs and understands your scaling goals can seem daunting.

It’s best to shortlist a few options and screen them.

Outside of industry-specific queries, here are a few vital questions to ask recruiting firms to identify if it’s going to be the right fit for your business.

1. What Is Your Candidate Selection Process?

No two recruitment agencies are the same. Each one leverages different channels and processes to source and move candidates through the recruitment funnel.

Having said that, once you’ve hired a recruiting firm, you don’t want to be inundated with resumes that demand extra hours and effort on your part. 

One article depicts how a single vacant position at a company can incur a loss of nearly $681.82 daily and $3,409.10 over a five-day workweek. Therefore, you want to scale your team and fill positions quickly.

To land high-quality candidates quickly, you need to be aware of the steps that the recruitment agency you choose follows to select candidates. 

Ask all the firms you’ve shortlisted about how they handle applications, the selection process, what information they will be obtaining from applicants, and if they speak to each applicant one-to-one. 

Additionally, you can also ask them how many candidate profiles they expect to provide you with on a weekly, daily, or monthly basis, depending on your hiring timeline.

2. How Do You Manage Referrals Submitted by Internal Employees?

Candidate referrals submitted by internal employees can be a powerful tool if the recruitment agency you hire knows how to leverage those effectively.

A new eBook states that employers rated employee referrals as the most dependable source for generating quality new hires with 88%.

Therefore, any recruitment agency that you’re considering as a prospective partner should have a robust program in place to collect and investigate referrals from your existing employees. 

Recruitment agencies must take special care toward keeping employees motivated to submit referrals so that the process doesn’t get monotonous for them. This can easily be done by showing company-wide recognition and handing out gift hampers to employees that refer good candidates.

3. What Effort Do You Place Toward Finding and Engaging Passive Candidates?

Today, nearly 37.3% of workers in the United States are passively open to new opportunities.

Source: Workable

A vast array of available options, proven experience in the field you operate in, and a higher probability of quick scaling all imply passive candidates are an attractive proposition to any business leader. There’s a reason nearly 98% of hiring managers and HR management teams see passive candidates as an essential source of direct hire!

To put it simply, ignoring passive job seekers means missing out on a significant portion of high-caliber candidates. Therefore, of all the questions to ask a potential recruiting partner, perhaps this is the most loaded.

A strong recruiting partner who identifies passive candidates and reaches out to them in a way that engages them effectively will add a lot more value to your hiring strategy than one that doesn’t.

4. Have You Placed Candidates in Similar Roles Before?

The recruitment agency you choose will also represent your business in searching for your staff. Therefore, you need to be confident that they understand the applications and roles you are looking to fill.

Asking if they have placed candidates in a similar role earlier will help make sure that you are choosing the right partner. Even better, ask them to provide customer testimonials or examples of how they’ve handled client requirements that needed them to step out of their comfort zone.

If you are still unsure, you can try shortlisting the employment agencies you’re considering partnering with and inviting them to present to you. This gives them an incentive to do their homework on your industry and an opportunity to showcase it.

Additionally, these presentations will give you a clearer idea of the approach each agency follows and help you decide which one to move further with.

5. How Do You Charge? Will There Be Any Hidden Costs Involved at a Later Time?

The cost is one of the most critical factors that play a key role in deciding which recruiting partner you proceed with, especially if yours is a startup or if you’re setting out on your entrepreneurial journey for the first time with limited capital.

Recruitment agencies tend to charge in one of two ways: a percentage fee or a retainer.

The percentage fee is based on the candidate’s starting salary and usually is payable once the candidate starts work with you. This form of charging is most common, and if you don’t find a suitable candidate, you aren’t expected to pay the agency anything.

However, fees can vary from 8-25% depending on the agency and the salary. If you choose a retainer fee, it is agreed at the outset, with a percentage payable upfront and the remainder due when the candidate starts employment.

It is also best to inquire about hidden fees to make costing as crystal clear as possible.

6. How Will You Add Value to Our Recruitment Process?

If you’re still unsure about which hiring agencies to tie up with after asking all these questions, the answer to this one could very well be the decider. 

Some of the things you can try assessing here include:

  • Do they enhance their service with guidance on talent management, dedicate time to helping candidates prepare for interviews, help candidates during their job search, or invest in an advice blog? 
  • Do they produce a candidate brief? 
  • Will they keep in regular contact and work in partnership with you? 
  • Are they an agency you can trust to be open and honest?

Also, try seeing what the agency’s existing and past clients have to say about them.

Getting the right people into your business can improve your productivity, your competitiveness, and your profitability – taking the time to ask these questions will help you find the right recruitment partner to achieve it.

Hopefully, these questions will point you in the right direction of a successful partnership with recruiting agencies.

If you still have questions, Recruiter.com is here to help. We have recruiters that you can hire on an as-needed basis, along with software that can provide a predictable candidate-sourcing pipeline.

Contact us today to find out more if you want to enhance your recruitment process.

 

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