The more elaborate our means of communication, the less we need to communicate. – Joseph Priestley
Many companies today use the services of recruitment agencies, either because of the market saturation or simply because they’re used to it. The important thing is that they are a valuable business partner when used correctly and it’s usually up to the company on how effectively they use the recruitment agency as a service. There are many factors which influence the quality of the end result which is hiring the best talent but one of the most important ones is maintaining a good business relationship. Let’s imagine a company X which has a good recognizable brand, they have a contract with a recruitment agency but they rarely use their service because they do fine by themselves most of the time. They’re rarely in contact and they don’t know much about each other as far as brief introduction went. Once or twice a year they have open vacancies like Data Scientist or any developer position with which they do have trouble finding quality candidates. During those situations, the company X sends a request to find a suitable candidate with only a job description and necessary operational info to proceed. The agency usually won’t ask too many questions in terms of making it a more quality search since they’re treated the same. One of the biggest problems here is the lack of information by both sides which will inevitably cause a series of issues and thus causing the business harm in the larger picture. The agency doesn’t deliver both the number and the quality candidates in the reasonable amount of time that the company X expects them to and the already bland relationship becomes even worse. This is something that has to be avoided at all costs.
The above situation is not rare and companies don’t treat recruitment agencies as they’re supposed to, that being a business partner whose sole purpose is to help the company in the long run. Naturally, with the lack of interest and contact from both sides, the project won’t have even decent results, let alone what is expected which is the best possible talent on the market. However, a company which is a client to a recruitment agency is the one who needs to initiate action which will start a good business relationship. How do they do that?
How to start/maintain a good business relationship and potentially reduce hidden costs
So what did company X do wrong that influenced on the quality of service the recruitment agency provided? For one thing, despite being the company that rarely uses a recruitment agency, sending a basic information with a request is an alarmingly unprofessional move to them. A good recruiter will want to know a lot more than that, namely about the culture of the company as a whole, who the hiring manager is and what kind of profile they want, the salary brackets the company is willing to negotiate with, the benefits which they have on offer etc. All of that info is crucial to a recruiter if they want to sell the position and the company well. Without these types of information, a recruitment agency won’t take the request seriously which will result that company’s case in a lower priority. That is why the end result wasn’t satisfying. A company that understands all those points also understands that a recruitment agency is a business which will run well only if their clients provide them with enough action and information to do so.
That is essentially how a company can start grooming the relationship. You provide them with the necessary information and the results will come. It’s good to be in touch with them even when a company doesn’t have any need for their service, just because being in touch can heavily impact on how the agency perceives that company and attain new and valuable information about the company. Being in touch and keeping them informed about the current situation is a form of respect which doesn’t have a price and yet is a really important factor. The more knowledge a recruiter has on the company, the easier it will be for them to find good candidates should a situation arise. For example, if a recruiter knows that the hiring manager is the type of person who is very direct and doesn’t like sugarcoating things, they will know that the candidates in question have to be more resilient. Keep in mind that this is just one of the multitude of pieces of information which would help recruiters find the best suitable candidate for the specific department in a specific company. Not to mention the time it would save for in-house recruiters or managers in terms for testing them in cultural aspects or even skipping a certain step in the process just because the agency knows them so well.
To get back on our above scenario, the company X hires a person after four months of initiating the search with the recruitment agency and after five months of initiating the search by themselves. That’s five months of work without an employee. Those four months could’ve been shortened by two months if the process as a whole was properly introduced and would’ve saved a lot of hidden business cost, even counting the fee needed to pay the agency for the candidate. It’s a win-win scenario for the company and the agency. Time to hire is definitely money in recruitment and is something to watch out for.
If a company uses a recruitment agency and expects the best possible results, they have to make sure to properly send the information across and treat them as someone who will definitely help them grow their business. At the end of the day, that’s what a company does for the recruitment agency because they’re their primary source of income. Having a superb business relationship can almost guarantee the best possible result because both parties are motivated and willing to do their best to succeed. Aside from the fact it would give good results, a good relationship will help in an employer branding aspect because having another source of spreading a good word of mouth is always good as well as shortening the time frame your department is deficient on staff. Treating another business as your own will do wonders to your organization and theirs.