The Recruitment Industry – Benefits for Businesses

This is an accompanying piece to my post on Why The Recruitment Industry Needs to Change, and offers an insight into how relevant the recruitment industry still is – provided it follows the lessons of the previous post.

As a recruitment consultant, the first question I or others get invariably asked by potential clients from the outset is “Why do we need you?” Considering the reputation recruiters have in the marketplace and it’s perceived worthlessness to business, it is a fair question. The previous whitepaper looks to the reasons why the recruitment industry needs to change to meet the changes in business practices, yet conversely, there is still an important and significant contribution recruiters can make to effectively assist a business in the acquisition of new and appropriate talent.

In the post-GFC climate, growth patterns for most business are heading upward. As with any periods of growth, there is a need to ensure the people are there to facilitate this activity and carry the business through to the next stage. Selecting the right person is as important as knowing what projects to undertake or what clients to engage.

However, what business has the time to commit to proper and detailed selection of candidates?

It is this question that points to the first benefit of an experienced recruiter – time effectiveness. Particularly for small business, yet also resonating with larger corporations, the constraints of time are a major impact, and the allocation of time to the recruiting of new staff is often seen as an expense most can do without.

The effectiveness of the external recruitment model is exemplified in this area. By essentially offloading the:

  • search
  • screening
  • culling
  • selection
  • reference checking; and
  • Police Record checks

of a staff member to a recruiter, the fact of having it running in the background whilst being left to concentrate fully on the business is an attractive proposition. The only need to become involved is towards the end of the process, when interviews and decisions are made. The effectiveness of this recruitment model comes in the quality of the candidate(s) on offer. When the recruitment agent has done their homework, the result is usually a strong, qualified and environmental fit.

When put alongside the alternative which is a time-constrained, hurried, under-pressure manager trying to conduct an effective recruitment process, with the distinct possibility of a subsequently rushed hire that was chosen on merits not fitting the culture of the workplace, resulting in a bad hire, there are plenty of reasons why having outside help is beneficial. According to a wide variety of research, the cost of a bad hire can be up to twice the annual salary of the staff member (see the article: “The Real Cost of Recruitment” for full details), and this can effectively retard the growth of any business.

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Leaders – employee engagement starts with you

It is a very simple proposition, yet one that fails to register with many managers: employees do not leave companies, they leave leaders. This lack of acknowledgement is impacting businesses en-masse and there seems to be a degree of ambivalence when it comes to accepting responsibility for high turnovers.

At present, we are facing a very disengaged workforce. As was identified in the Hudson ‘Positioning for Growth’ report, the GFC demonstrated a disregard for engagement which inevitably led to a sense of disassociation between managers and staff. This study indicated that not only the number of employees looking to leave a company radically increased, but there was a general attitude that businesses failed their employees to such a degree that they were essentially pushing them out of the door. Look at that again: an increase in the number of employees looking to leave, and the fact that businesses seemingly do nothing about it. Hay Group and Drake International, in recent surveys, identified that 50% of employees are thinking about leaving their employer, with over 25% actively doing something about it. Additionally, in a snap poll in The Age newspaper, of almost 6,400 respondents, 71% said they were not happy in their role. If this does not ring alarm bells to managers and leaders everywhere, then it should. These are staggering figures which suggest that there is disquiet in almost every workplace in the country.

You cannot expect to properly function as a leader if you do not understand how vital it is that your staff are engaged.

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