Six Questions to Ask Before Engaging a Recruitment Firm

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Questions to ask a recruitment agency to make sure you're engaging your perfect partner.

When looking to grow your workforce, what should you be asking your staffing agency to make sure they are the perfect partner for your needs?

UK employment rates have continued to rise annually since 2011 (data: Office for National Statistics (ONS)). There are indications that UK businesses are likely to create jobs in 2018: the CBI has found that 51% of firms across the UK will grow their workforce in the year ahead.

Inavero, which each year rates recruitment firms based on feedback provided by clients and job candidates to determine its Best of Staffing® Award winners, has some recommendations. When vetting a staffing company, Inavero says, make sure to ask these seven questions:

1. What expertise do you have with recruiting in my industry?

This can be the most important qualification. Determine if the staffing agency has filled positions for your competitors ─ that could be a sign of future success for you as well.

2. How do you measure your customer satisfaction and what is your most recent satisfaction score?

One of the most reliable indicators of future performance is past performance, so ask agencies to provide you with client satisfaction ratings. Best of Staffing® Client Award winners, for instance, satisfy their clients 40% more than non-winning agencies.

3. How satisfied are your clients?

Happy employees are invaluable. Dissatisfied permanent and temporary employees who are working for you are twice as likely to quit their job early.  Gauge the satisfaction of permanent and temporary employees currently working for a staffing agency by viewing testimonials, reviews and, where available, satisfaction scores.

4. What current trends and recruiting issues should I be aware of?

Choose a staffing agency you trust as a strategic advisor for your company. Your agency should provide you with useful and enlightening information that makes you smarter, even before you hire them.

5. Do you expect your rates to be higher, lower or about the same as other agencies we may consider?

It’s important to make an informed decision based on value. Inavero research shows that if your organisation makes a bad hiring decision, it will cost up to four times more than if you had just hired a staffing agency with expertise in filling your needed position. If an agency is higher in cost than its competitors, it should be able to explain and illustrate why.

6. What are your expectations of me in this partnership?

Partner with a staffing agency that you trust enough to allow them the access they need to learn about your business and culture. With this commitment in place, hiring a staffing agency and developing your flexible workforce strategy can be a transformational component for your organisation’s growth, flexibility and sustained success.

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