It’s not a new question nor is it infrequently asked. Whether you should outsource a business service or not is a strategic decision for business owners and managers. Yet, determining if you should outsource talent recruitment remains largely subjective and often debated within organizations of all sizes.

On one side, organizations point out that their Human Resource and Leadership teams are incredibly resourceful people, capable of hiring new talent on their own. Plus there is now an app available for almost every possible function, need, and desire imaginable that could provide some sort of guidance. How hard can talent recruitment and acquisition be anyway? It’s not like you’re adding a new deck to the back of your home, and there are hundreds if not thousands of instructional videos and books on how to do that!

Still, the only thing consistent in business today is change. The labor market is constantly adjusting to economic and social influences. Technology coupled with business growth is continually impacting needed skill sets. Labor laws and regulations push shifts in human resource practices and compliance requirements. And your perfect-fit next hire may not even be looking for a new role at the moment. Do you have a plan to find, attract, and engage with them? Maybe building that new deck would be easier than handling your own talent recruitment process.

In this post, we’ll unpack what talent recruitment means, what outsourcing this process looks like, and why doing so makes good business sense.

What is Talent Recruitment?

As in most industries, terminology in the larger field of recruiting has adapted as well. While there are many nuances, talent recruitment is a subset of your larger talent management strategy. Specifically, talent recruitment refers to the beginning stages of your talent acquisition process. This early stage is where sourcing, recruiting, and early vetting of candidates happens.

It is also important to note that talent recruitment is not about simply posting job openings and reviewing incoming resumes, nor does it describe staffing services or temporary placements. Rather it is very much a proactive and targeted approach. A skilled recruiter becomes part investigator to find specific individuals capable of performing in a defined position. Then transitions into a sales role to pique the interest of a candidate, encouraging them to pursue your opening. At this point, a recruiter will mentally assume a role within their client’s organization to vet the candidate against a determined set of criteria to evaluate if they could be a good fit within their client’s organization.

This early stage — before more intensive interviews, actual hiring, onboarding, and coaching happen — is when outsourcing your talent recruitment firm can offer tremendous value to an organization. This is also commonly referred to as Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO).

What Outsourcing Your Recruitment Process Looks Like?

Like other business processes and functions, outsourcing talent recruitment is when a business relies on specialists outside of their organization to manage part or all of their recruitment needs. Typically this will include candidate sourcing, recruiting, and initial interviews.

However, services could also include administering personality profile testing and background checks. Beyond talent recruitment, a variety of consultative talent management services may also be outsourced such as workforce planning and employee development and engagement to help organizations manage and enhance their workforce.

The specific details of outsourcing your talent recruitment process will likely look and feel a little different from one recruitment firm to another, especially if you are working with an executive-level recruitment firm. However, as experts in this field, here is an overview of what you can expect from AEBetancourt.

Our process begins before any sourcing, recruiting, or interviewing takes place. Step one is to understand and clarify your hiring process. This is an essential first step. Any recruitment firm you work with needs to know what is going to happen at each phase in the hiring process and who will be involved in each part. The purpose is to ensure a defined structure is in place and that it is closely adhered to.

Now that the foundation is in place, the next step is to define the scope of your talent search. We seek to understand not just the role we are helping you to fill, but also help you define what success in this role will look like at the end of a new hire’s first year. Further, we clarify the search process by outlining the ideal characteristics of your perfect-fit hire: skills, education, experience, accomplishments, titles, traits, any detail that will help understand who we are looking for.

As we source candidates we begin to evaluate their fit for your talent needs by vetting them against the preset criteria, only presenting to you the best options for your consideration as your team continues the interview process.

Why Outsourcing Talent Recruitment Makes Good Business Sense

By now you should have an understanding that outsourcing talent recruitment is not just handing over a set of tasks to an outside organization. Who you partner with is just as important as deciding if you will partner with someone. When you find that ideal partnership, there are some real advantages for your business. Here are ten attributes organizations can gain by outsourcing their talent recruitment process.

1. Expertise

Let’s go back to our analogy of building a new deck for your home. Many people can build their own deck. However, the results might not match what they had hoped or expected. An expert in building decks has the tools, experience, and knowledge that makes the difference between getting the job finished, and ending with a finished product you are proud to show and feel safe enough to use.

This is what the right talent recruitment firm can offer your organization. Yes, you can hire employees yourself, but will it be the right person? Are you missing opportunities to find talent that may not be actively pursuing new roles? The experience, knowledge, and proven process of a talent recruitment agency will not only help you fill open positions but assist you in finding a perfect-fit hire and help you avoid making a bad hiring decision.

2. Focused attention

Think for a moment about the various people involved in hiring new talent at your organization. Your hiring manager needs to provide the details and requirements of the position and take an active role in the hiring process. Human Resources will create the posting, review applications, and begin the interview process. At some point, senior management will be involved to review and approve adding more employees to your team and payroll, and take an active role if you are hiring for senior positions.

Who is taking the lead? How much time will each area need to commit to this process? How quickly do you need to fill your open vacancies?

Outsourcing talent recruitment means gaining additional resources for the sole purpose of sourcing, recruiting, vetting, and hiring top talent. Even better, is that those resources are dedicated to your talent needs when working with us, not shared across multiple clients where you need to compete on yet another level.

3. Time

Related to the last point, is the amount of time hiring can take. There is the time of the process itself to find the right talent, schedule rounds of interviews, and then agree upon an actual start date. If finding pockets of time to dedicate focused attention on hiring presents challenges, how long will the hiring process realistically take?

You also know that some roles are more challenging to fill than others based on seniority or required experience. Further, current labor market trends can also impact the time to hire. Having a professional recruitment firm working with and for you also means you have a team that is continually engaged with top professionals in your industry which can dramatically reduce the amount of time needed to fill your open positions.

4. Access

If you are handling all aspects of the hiring process internally, you are likely using various job boards and social media channels to recruit candidates. While this can be effective, what kinds of candidates are you attracting?

The answer is most likely active candidates, individuals actively engaged in the process of looking for a new job. However, how are you going to reach those who may be taking a passive approach? These individuals may be open to opportunities that come their way, but they are certainly not reviewing job boards.

Fortunately, LinkedIn has a feature that allows candidates to create a note on their personal profiles when they are open to career opportunities. The downside to this feature is that hiring companies need a Recruiter-level platform subscription to access these candidates. If your company is only hiring at specific times of the year maintaining this subscription level can become very costly. However a recruitment firm, especially one with experience in a broad range of positions, will have these subscriptions as part of their normal suite of technology tools. Outsourcing your talent recruitment process means you can gain access to these candidates that would otherwise be outside of your reach.

5. Agility

The business environment is continually changing based on a variety of economic and social factors. Businesses that thrive, not just survive, are characterized by an ability to react quickly to market changes.

Partnering with a reputable recruitment firm allows your organization to quickly react to business employment needs. Our unique model allows our clients to remain incredibly agile regardless of whether they are in an active or passive hiring pattern themselves.

6. Cost management

Contrary to some misconceptions about the recruiting industry, you do not need to pay retainer fees to work with a reputable recruitment firm. Paying for outsourced talent recruitment services on an as-needed basis can offer companies an effective way to manage their human resource expenses.

Think of this in terms of a time-money exchange. Your time is valuable. Your organization receives the biggest return on your value when your efforts are focused on tasks that produce the highest results. When your time and focus are placed on tasks outside of your core competencies it will take you more time and therefore more cost to your company to complete.

Outsourcing talent recruitment to a team that is highly proficient in sourcing, recruiting, and hiring top talent means your time can be focused on where it will get the greatest return. All while they focus on their expertise: finding you exceptional talent.

7. Advocate

In a 2021 survey conducted by Bizrate Insights, ninety-one percent of respondents said they rely on review recommendations before making a purchase decision on a product, business, or service. Input from a third-party source has a tremendous influence on how we form opinions and make decisions.

Company reviews on job boards have the same influence, and in some cases a greater impact on candidates’ decisions to join or avoid your company. Forbes reported on another study that cited as many as fifty-seven percent of candidates will avoid companies with negative online reviews.

Perception matters, and having someone in your corner to reinforce positive online sentiment, or to correct negative comments, can have a profound effect on attracting top talent to your organization. The right talent recruitment firm can make sure prospective candidates have the right perception of your company.

8. Advisor

Near the beginning of this blog we explained what outsourcing your talent recruitment process looks like. Go back and read that part again. Recruitment agencies are not only a dedicated team to help you hire great talent, but they also serve as talent management advisors to you.

Great recruitment firms can assist with workforce planning, training and development programs, and employee engagement initiatives. Throughout the recruitment process they can provide insight on brand perception and compensation benchmarks. Even beyond direct hiring needs, they can assist with leadership transitions due to business mergers, restructuring, or retirements.

9. Consistency

The larger your organization is, the more individuals you will have involved in hiring new employees for your company. Unfortunately, this also means multiple methods and approaches to interviewing. While variety may be the spice of life that gives it all its flavor, disjointed and individualized interview methods are a recipe for problems.

Outsourcing your talent recruitment process means working with a team that has developed, tested, and refined their hiring practices from sourcing to recruiting, and most of all to interviewing. Having a consistent structured interview process means having consistency from start to finish.

Why does this matter? Consistency in hiring ensures that each candidate experiences the same process and is evaluated against the same set of criteria or benchmark standards. Further, it removes the risk of inequitable evaluations based on personal biases.

10. Quality

We saved the best reason for last. Outsourcing your talent recruitment to an expert recruitment firm means gaining access to a superior process of hiring top talent. Using the best process ensures you will have access to the best candidates from which to select your perfect-fit hires.

Yes, you most certainly can hire employees yourself. And yes, some of them will undoubtedly be exceptional employees. However, that decision could cost you time, agility, increased costs, and consistency. On the other hand, outsourcing your talent recruitment process to a partner you can trust can gain you expertise, focused efforts, access, advocacy, advice, and quality.

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