Role of a Recruitment Agency
In order for someone to be good as a recruitment consultant they require a blend of several types of skills, without these the role can be very demoralising and unsuccessful.
It is not hard to land yourself a role in recruitment, after all recruitment is a sales role and therefore does not necessarily require a strong academic background. But for many being a good recruitment consultant is incredibly difficult – so I will try to explain why it is so difficult and how you can position yourself to be the best possible success you can be. Remember as with any other sales positions the 80/20 role generally applies. So 80% commission will be earned by 20% of the sales team, if you want to be part of that 20% then read on and hopefully you can fine tune your recruitment skills.
When you approach a Recruitment Agency to fill a role, do you know exactly what you want? And just how can the Agency do what you can do yourself?
As a Recruitment Consultant, one of the objections that is constantly thrown by prospective clients is “why should we use you when we can do everything that you can, and for free”.
Well, you probably can, but it’s certainly not for free!
What it costs you to fill a role yourself
Many people think that because they are using the existing resources of their company to fill a role, that it’s free.
This is not the case.
Even if your company has an active HR department that includes a recruiter, the cost of it will be billed to you; and there are some things that the HR department cannot do, so your time will become involved.
So, your time (and the cost of that time) starts to be involved in the cost of hiring the right person. You need to review resumes and interview candidates. If you’ve got no HR department, or choose to handle everything directly, then you also have to screen the original applicants.
Then there is the initial preparation – writing the job ad, uploading it to the internet or putting it in the newspaper.
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You need to screen applicants, and also take telephone enquiries about the position. Unsuccessful applicants from your first screening need to be contacted to advise them, and then you need to contact those who you want to interview, or check further, to arrange for an interview, or even just have a quick conversation with over the phone.
Even if you have somebody else do all of this, their time is still used. And while you or somebody else is doing this, they are not doing their normal work.
So – add up all the hours it takes to do all this, including interviews, second interviews, preparing letters of offer, and then look at what your hourly pay rate is, and then the lost productivity while you fill an empty position.
When it all comes down to it, it will cost you over $15,000 to do it yourself – and we’re not even looking at what happens when you make a mistake and have to start all over again!
What does an Agency cost
Many agencies have a sliding scale of costs, depending on the role to be filled. As an average, though, 15% of the total package is the charge.
This means, that if the package is $40,000 per annum, then the cost you will pay to the agency is $6,000.
What do you get for the cost?
The agency you choose will work with you to fill the role. They will prepare all advertising (everything except newspaper display ads are included in the cost), screen all applicants, take the enquiries, and even help you to prepare a position description.
They will conduct interviews and shortlist 3 or 4 candidates for you to see. They will make the offer to the successful candidate, advise all the unsuccessful ones, and help you prepare the letter of offer.
They will also offer a replacement guarantee (usually 3 – 6 months) that if the person doesn’t work out, or leaves of their own accord, the Agency will find a replacement free of charge.
How the Agency will help you
The key to getting the best results is to be prepared yourself. Get recommendations from other companies as to the agencies they have success with. There are also “co-ops” of agencies, where if you use one of the members, you, effectively, have all of them working for you, at no extra cost.
The best known of these is NPA Worldwide, based in the US, but with members all over the world.
One of the advantages of using a member of a group like NPA is that the members have to meet specific standards in service, which is a big relief!
Also check with the Recruitment Industry Association in your country. They can assist in finding a reputable agency, and can also assist in letting you know of any that there have been problems with.
When you contact the Agency, they will usually assign a Consultant to look after you and your vacancy. This consultant will usually visit you at your workplace so that they can discuss the position in detail with you, and to find out not only the sort of role, but the type of person who will fit in best within your company.
If you like, they will also help you do a HR audit to refine the role, and prepare a position description.
Then, they move into their main role: filling the job. The Consultant works with the other people in their agency to prepare a job ad, and also search their own database for prospective candidates.
They screen, and shortlist. You will receive 3 or 4 resumes, and a short summary of each candidate from them. This includes the salary/wage they are looking for, and their availability.
By the time it comes for you to interview these candidates, it’s more a “get to know you” meeting, as the people that the Agency has sent will have the skills to do the role.
It’s important that you trust your Recruitment Agency. They will build a long term relationship with you, getting to know who you and your company are and working with you to build a workplace that people will enjoy working at.
You won’t loose productivity when you have a vacancy to fill, and will find the whole process less stressful.
Recruitment Agencies are experts – and can save your company time and money in the long run.
Hopefully this provides an overview of what makes a good recruitment consultant and the little tips that could help you be more successful. Remember like any job it is not easy being successful, but if you have the drive and ambition to succeed then you can make anything happen.