Do Recruitment Company’s Still Add Value?

UK Recruitment market £24billion industry.

Adding value is a bit of a cliche I know but in the current economic climate and with some social media pundits declaring social resourcing as the death of recruitment companies I thought it a worthy topic for inclusion in our blog.

Some organisations use recruitment companies strategically and some tactically depending on their in-house capabilities, hiring needs, level of position and size of salary. The UK Recruitment market, according to REC Recruitment Industry Trends Survey 2010/11, has grown to a £24billion industry which isn’t going to disappear over night.

Recruitment companies need to evolve and innovate.

Yes recruitment companies need to evolve and be more innovative in the use of technology and social media platforms. There will be those who see this as an opportunity to develop services that add more value to their relationships with clients and candidates and those that do nothing and struggle to survive.

Recruitment is usually a function of HR but not all companies have large HR departments with dedicated resources capable of identifying and engaging with the talent they need, especially higher level positions with six figure salaries. The responsibility for hiring then falls to Heads of Departments or is delegated to Managers. This is where a recruitment company adds value by taking responsibility for identifying and engaging with the talent they need.

The ‘War for Talent’ is a phrase frequently used in HR forums, talent management seminars and recruitment networking events. Think of specialist recruitment companies like VadarMoss as the SAS strategically deployed, targeting high value assets, they are not the main force but they are a vital resource in winning the war.

HR and hiring managers overwhelmed with applicants.

You would be forgiven for thinking that the current levels of unemployment would make it a clients market lessening the need to use an external recruitment company. In my experience it’s the opposite and there is a greater need to use the specialist skills of a recruitment company. The abundance of labour makes it harder to find the quality candidates. Adverts and Job Boards are attracting record numbers of applicants for every open role resulting in HR departments and hiring managers being overwhelmed and under pressure to make quick decisions on who’s worth keeping and who to reject. I’ve heard many hiring managers bemoan the number of poorly qualified candidates they have to interview during the recruitment process.

Only the best candidates get shortlisted.

Established recruitment companies have extensive networks of candidates they can quickly access and identify quality candidates, removing the need to source candidates from the general labour market. They use their market knowledge and sales ability to turn passive candidates into active candidates, extending the talent pool further. The pool of candidates may be smaller compared to advert and job board responses, but the quality will be far higher. They can dedicate more time to qualifying candidates, meeting them face to face gaining valuable insight into personal profiles, achievements, goals and ambitions ensuring only the best candidates are shortlisted for interview by hiring managers.

Add value throughout the hiring process.

Once candidates have been selected for interview the recruitment company continues to add value managing the interview process, organising and scheduling interviews, maintaining communications with candidates setting expectations and giving feedback. Losing candidates at the final stage is very costly if you consider the time and effort, particularly senior executives, has been invested in the interview process. The relationship the recruitment consultant has with their candidates can be very valuable when negotiating offers and securing the best candidates.

Recruitment companies ultimately save hiring manager’s time but more importantly help them find and attract the individuals and leaders with the necessary skills and experience that will help drive their businesses forward in the shortest possible time-frames. I believe recruitment companies add a lot of value to organisations that need to identify and attract talent but don’t have the resources or skills to do it themselves.


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