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10 Qualities to Look for in a Hiring Partner

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Offering Total Talent Solutions

According to the NCMM’s Q4 2014 Indicator Survey, more than half of middle market companies are struggling to fill a skills gap. Plus, when rating their top five business challenges, the “ability to attract, train and retain talent” ranks fifth with 77% of middle market firms reporting this as a top challenge.

Given the competiveness and urgency for high-growth, middle-market firms to find, attract and retain high quality talent, middle-market leaders must understand all options when choosing a hiring partner.

Relying on recruitment agencies is an option, but it can become costly when you have many open positions. In addition, few employment agencies offer talent management and consulting services to aid with training and retention. That’s where a comprehensive recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) solution comes in.

RPO is where an employer transfers all or part of its recruitment activities to an external service provider; however, not all RPO providers are created equal. All RPOs provide transactional recruitment services; however a subset provides comprehensive solutions to solve challenges along each segment of the talent value chain. If your organization grapples with training and retention as well, the more inclusive provider will solve more of these challenges while you gain the economies of scale of using one provider. In addition, an RPO firm providing broader services will be able to evolve from transactional recruitment provider to strategic, total talent solutions consultant as your organizational needs transform over time.

When shopping for an RPO provider that can provide a total talent solution, here are the 10 qualities to look for in a hiring partner: 

  1. Recruitment &Employer Branding Expertise: Experienced recruitment process outsourcing companies offer extensive research skills, are familiar with cutting edge recruitment and sourcing strategies, and can furnish tools and techniques for building a desirable employer brand.  They can also build specialty talent pools and communities. The best among them understand generational differences in communication methods within candidate pools.
  2. Speed: Skilled RPO providers streamline your recruitment process by eliminating unnecessary research and creating a simpler, more efficient solution—all while balancing improvements in time-to-fill and maintaining a high quality of hire.
  3. Flexibility & Scalability: One of the greatest recruitment challenges is effectively responding to rapid fluctuations in hiring demand. An RPO provider should offer several solution options for scalability and flexibility to minimize your cost and risk as your hiring demand levels vary.
  4. Cost Savings: Outsourcing cuts down both measureable and soft costs. The longer a role is left unfilled, the more money it costs a business. Placing the wrong hire in a position creates unnecessary turnover costs. An RPO decreases a company's cost-per-hire and time-to-fill while enabling HR and hiring managers to focus on high priority responsibilities. 
  5. Technology and Data Expertise: A skilled RPO provider will assist in selecting the best tools and technologies according to your business requirement. They can also analyze and interpret industry and market intelligence, leverage big data for better business decisions and implement automated candidate campaigns for enhanced communication.  
  6. Compliance: From an EEOC, OFCCP and process perspective, your RPO provider must build your hiring system around your goals and objectives. This includes pre-defined Service Level Agreements (SLAs) complete with a governance model to safeguard expected program results and requisition activity levels. 
  7. High-Touch, Consultative Approach: A premium RPO partner provides white-glove service to both hiring managers and candidates with an exceptional attention to detail. For hiring managers, this means offering strategic planning and ongoing reporting and measurement against SLAs. For candidates, it translates into an exceptional hiring process experience to signal how the candidate will be treated as an employee. 
  8. Customized Solution: Many large recruitment companies operate on a one-size-fits all model. Once you hire them, they simply plug your company into their RPO model. This solution isn’t always best for high-growth, middle market companies. Be sure your RPO provider can customize the solution to the unique needs of your organization.
  9. Talent Management and Coaching Services: Premium RPO providers offer value-added talent management and coaching services to aid in the recruitment, selection and development of top talent. Value-add services typically include competency profiling and psychometric testing, interview skills training, career and leadership coaching and services to aid with succession planning. 
  10. Ability to Reach Beyond Current Borders: Whether your operate globally today or have future expansion plans, it may be beneficial to seek an RPO provider who can grow with you globally. However, not all providers who claim to be global truly are. Be sure your provider has an on-the-ground, multi-national recruitment presence with local teams that grasp the values, customs and cultures of a particular geographic location. 

Hudson RPO named to HRO Today's Baker's Dozen List for Top RPO Providers for six consecutive years. Contact Hudson RPO to begin exploring how our products and services can help your business meet its recruiting needs, goals and objectives.





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Hudson is a global talent solutions company. We help transform the workplace and unleash the full potential of organizations and individuals. Our expert team and proprietary tools provide you with unique insights and services that help you maximize your success. Across 20 countries, we deliver a range of recruitment, talent management and recruitment process outsourcing solutions to get you and your business where you want to be.