Best practices at top recruitment agencies

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Best practices can be defined as the professional procedures widely-accepted as being most effective. As is the case in other industries, top recruitment agencies have one thing in common – they all operate in accordance with the same set of best practices.


But as the ongoing skills gap continues to widen (particularly in IT), competition between recruitment agencies is becoming increasingly cut-throat. Many agencies have resorted to undercutting prices in an attempt to win business. This has an inevitable knock-on effect on overall service experience. Best practices often get thrown out the window. Unsurprisingly, this has tarnished the reputation of the recruitment industry as a whole.


Making sweeping generalisations isn’t fair to those recruitment agencies who strive to exceed both client and candidate expectations. Top recruitment agencies do things differently. They uphold industry best practices as they know they are key to future growth and success.

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As a hiring manager, obviously it’s very appealing to hire a recruitment agency for the lowest possible price. There is a tendency to assume cheaper = better. But as many have found out the hard way, things don’t work like that in recruitment. After sifting through countless unsuitable applications and carefully pre-screening each candidate, the time lost is equal to the amount saved on the initial fee. Even worse, the candidate they eventually place may be a poor fit for your company.


In light of this, paying a premium to work with a top recruitment agency is well worth it. Top recruitment agencies take care of the all hard work behind the scenes and only deliver candidates when they are 100% sure they match the requirements outlined by the client.


When weighing up several potential agency partners, be sure to do some investigation first. Here are the top 4 recruitment agency best practices:


They offer a recruitment guarantee


This is very important. You should always ask agencies about their guarantee policy before signing terms with them. If they don’t have one, alarm bells should be ringing. The main benefit of a recruitment guarantee is peace of mind for your company. It’s a clear indication that your chosen agency is dedicated to providing a superior service.


Inevitably, sometimes circumstances will arise which result in the wrong employee-employer match. With a guarantee, you can rest assured that your agency will act quickly to resolve the problem. At Venturi, if an employee hired through us leaves your employment within a period of 8 weeks, we’ll offer you a refund. Our guarantee let’s our clients know they’ll be well taken care of, and demonstrates our confidence in our ability to find the right candidate during our initial search. If an agency is not willing to be held responsible for their work, then beware.


They have industry-specific expertise


This point is straightforward. It makes sense to choose a recruitment agency that works exclusively in the industry space you need. Specialist recruiters will have a refined understanding of factors that separate ‘good’ candidates from the truly great ones. This will ensure faster, more efficient results.


At Venturi, IT roles are all we focus on, and it’s what we excel at. In contrast, it’s very difficult for generalist recruiters to compete with in-depth industry knowledge. It’s simply not possible to be an expert across a wide range of very different job markets.


An in-depth screening process


Many of the issues with sub-standard recruitment agencies can be attributed to the fact that they don’t put in the time and effort required to screen applicants properly. According to Robert Meirer, President of Job Market Experts, 98% of job seekers are eliminated at the initial CV screening and only the top 2% of candidates make it to interview. Furthermore, up to 75% of applicants for any given role aren’t actually qualified to do it.


It’s no wonder that the hardest part of recruitment is screening candidates from a large applicant pool. Top recruitment agencies will do their due diligence during the screening process to ensure every single candidate they send to the client is a good fit for the role. Thorough and efficient pre-screening saves clients time, hassle, and money.


After-placement services


Obviously it’s great when the right candidate is placed in a role, but this is not the end of the road. Unfortunately, things can still go wrong after this point. Top recruitment agencies work to ensure both their candidates and clients are happy, and remain so after the placement. Good recruiters will regularly follow-up with candidates and clients in order to ensure the onboarding process goes smoothly. Staying in touch also gives them an opportunity to identify and learn from any mistakes they may have made during the hiring process.


They Treat Their Consultants Well 

A good recruitment agency will prioritize the happiness of their consultants through good incentives and a positive work/life balance. That happiness will then show in the enthusiasm they approach candidates with. 

A happy consultant is a hallmark sign of a good recruitment agency. If they look after their staff, they’ll look after yours too. 

With technology, remote working has become a popular option today instead of the traditional office space and it’s something that fits in well with the life of a consultant. Here is a 9-step recruitment process documentation from our friends over at TimeDoctor to help you hire the best talent from anywhere in the world.