Considerations When Selecting A Recruitment Agency
When a company decides to employ the services of a recruitment agency to help with an immediate staffing need, it is generally accepted and understood that some degree of diligence will be required in order to find a suitable candidate for the open position. Most of that hard work and persistence will come from the recruitment agency – which is why one decides to use agency staffing services in the first place – but some of that thoroughness must also come from the hiring company to evaluate its ultimate ‘fit’ with the candidate.
Diligence, although it can be time-consuming, is an integral component to ensure that a good hiring decision is made. In a similar context, the same degree of diligence should be applied when selecting the recruitment agency as well – investing time and effort in researching will pay dividends in:
- The caliber of the candidate pool from which you will make a hiring decision
- The expediency with which you will reach the point of making that decision
- The ease and seamlessness of the hiring process
So, how might one go about researching recruiting agencies to identify the optimal firm for their organization and specific needs? Perhaps one approach would be to separate the key questions and considerations into two main categories:
- Background about the agencies themselves, and
- How they facilitate the candidate selection process
About The Recruitment Agency
As with most things in life, not all agencies are cut from the same cloth. Although they may all classify themselves as a recruitment agency, their processes and areas of expertise may be entirely different. Ask/research the following:
- Types of candidates they represent – new, experienced, generalists, specialists?
- In which fields do they place most of their candidates – admin, technical, sales?
- How well do they understand your industry and/or your areas of expertise?
- Have they placed others in similar positions or worked with your competitors?
- Do they post this information and/or share it freely?
- Can you obtain or access references from any of these other clients?
- On a contingency basis (percentage of starting salary once candidate is hired)?
- On a retainer basis (percentage required upfront plus balance upon start date)?
In essence, you should be seeking the best alignment possible between your needs and what the agency brings to the table, in order to expedite the overall hiring process and find the most suitable candidate in the least amount of time.
About Candidate Selection
Similarly, you do not want to waste time and money on unqualified candidates. You will want a recruitment agency that does its homework in advance so that you can focus on quality rather than quantity when it comes down to selecting the best candidate. Ask about the following:
- How large is their base of candidates for your industry/needs at any given time?
- How many actual candidates do they anticipate providing for final assessment?
- Are candidates pre-screened – by phone, in person, or just on paper?
- Is any pre-testing required or performed (as appropriate)?
- When are reference checks completed – before or after final interviews?
- What other checks are completed – criminal records, education/work histories?
- Is there a guarantee period – to what extent and for how long after the hire date?
- Will the agency act as a mediator in the event of any employee-related issues?
A hiring decision should not be taken lightly, whether it is for an open position within the company or for the recruitment agency that will assist you in filling that open position. You may find it beneficial to conduct a thorough assessment of the agency to ensure that you make the best decision in both instances.
As a leader among recruiting agencies in Toronto, Winters Technical Staffing has been successfully fulfilling the staffing needs of our clients for more than 40 years. We have access to a wide range of qualified candidates and can ensure a seamless hiring process. Call Winters Technical Staffing today at 1-877-495-7422 to discuss your specific needs and timelines!