Finding a great recruitment agency is not a quick or haphazard process. For the best results, you should treat the process like you would treat your search for new employees. After all, you are investing time, money, and other resources in a service upon which your business will depend heavily for proper staffing and efficient operations. Follow these eight steps to help you select the perfect agency.
1. Do your research on the recruitment agency
Start with in-depth research on your possible candidates. Visit their websites, their LinkedIn profiles, and other platforms. Look for reviews and testimonials from third parties, and check to see if the agency in question has any experience with your particular field. Doing this bit of homework will help you to draw up your shortlist.
2. Screen and interview your recruitment agency
Treat your candidates as you would a potential new staff member. Set up a meeting and interview them to assess their experience, skill levels, and expertise.
3. Consider the recruiters’ experience, especially in your particular field
How long has the agency been running? What is their success rate like in relation to the length of time they have been running? As you research and interview the candidates, probe a little deeper to see if they have the experience needed to recruit the best talent for your needs. If you are in the healthcare field, for example, make sure your candidate has specific experience in healthcare recruitment.
4. Read their terms closely
Some recruiters can be quite rigid in their terms and practices, but this is something you should steer clear of. You want agility, adaptability, and a willingness to work with you and consider your needs from project to project and candidate to candidate. Pay close attention to their terms and working styles.
5. Study the recruitment agency’s track record
Investigating your candidates’ track records will begin at the research phase, but you should keep it in mind all the way through your selection process. How many successful placements have they made, and how often? When was their most recent successful fill? What do their clients say about them? If you have two candidates, one with a consistent success rate corroborated by third parties, and one that is also quite good, but with a history of hit-and-miss placements, it is obvious which one you should choose.
6. Determine whether they’re a good fit for you
No business relationship is purely about the numbers. Even the most successful recruitment agency in the country might not be a good fit for your company. Make sure that you can form a good, ongoing working relationship with the agency.
7. Give them clear instructions
It is vital that you are always clear about what you want – both in the interview stages and when you have established a long-term relationship with your agency. The best recruiter is the one who listens to you closely and finds the right person to fit your brief – but the onus is on you to make your brief clear and easy to follow. Otherwise, you can’t assess your recruiter’s performance fairly.
8. Take a trial period to assess their performance
Business relationships take time to form, and people need a while to get to understand one another. Speak to your agency about going through a trial period to see whether you really are a good fit for one another.