R.I.P. Recruitment Search Agencies. Thank you for all your contributions but you will not be missed

Why would I write a post about the death of agencies when they are still active and a valued part of many companies budgets and recruitment process? That is a very insightful question and one the deserves a well outlined response.

First, on behalf of all the companies both small and large, thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the thousands of valuable human capital assets provided over the years. Those assets have provided us with innovation and productivity that have helped carry us onto the next phase in our evolution. It is with a deep heart that we say goodbye.

We will miss the gift baskets around the holidays, the 30,000 dollar vouchers, the feeling that you were our best friend in the world, and the comfort of knowing that you know our business, roles and products. It was a warm feeling that still provides chills at night.

Now, is the part of the broadcast where we explain why the demise is near.

1.) A growing number of organizations are developing dedicated strategic sourcing teams to pipeline current and future talent needs. These individuals blend a balance of talent acquisition and marketing to develop processes around finding and attracting talent. Utilizing Boolean search string technology, developing and managing talent communities, adapting targeted email campaigns, CRM tool tracking, and cold calling, it is only a matter of time before the church bells chime and we mourn the passing of agency fees

2.) Internet connection tools powered by sites including Ping.fm allow us to brand out opportunities to thousands upon thousands of people within seconds. Just yesterday, Recently, a tweet with a URL description was sent through Pluggio.com and with the integration of Ping.fm, the tweet went to Flickr, Yahoo Profile, Google Buzz, Delicious, Yammer, Ning, Twitter, Facebook and Myspace and that was only the tip of the iceberg. Why Flickr and Delicious. Networking is no longer using professional communities as a way of finding talent. How many of us have Amazon or Barnes and Noble accounts and followers of our books lists. Talent can be found under many more rocks than ever before.

3.) Macros and schedulers are alive and well. Software like IMacro, Pluggio and Tweetdeck allow us to not only tweet and post jobs to Twitter and Linkedin but they allow us to schedule how often we post them.

4.) Cost effective partnerships – Tweetmyjobs tweets 1.2 million jobs per day and they have accounts that send by region and discipline. Oodle.com posts roles to over 100 sites including Myspace and Facebook for free. Twitres.com allows you to post resumes or jobs for free and re-tweet as often as you like.

5.) Talent Communities – Companies are taking advantage of LinkedIn Groups, Google Groups, Yahoo Groups and many others to build talent communities for networking and maintaining contact with potential future talent.

6.) As social media is making bringing the world closer together networking and referrals are a more valued asset.

7.) Many companies are building alumni talent communities and even offering referral bonuses

8.) Blogging, live chat and fan sites are allowing companies to talk to customers, vendors and candidates and educate them on culture, product/services and solicit information. As candidates become more involved, their sense of value will grow and thus their interest in the company.

9.) Mobile campaigns are taking the number communication media in the world and reaching out to the associates of tomorrow.

The evolution is here. As we step into a new age of cost effective operation, efficiencies of process are spurring out. To the victor, companies will rise again. To the search agencies, R.I.P.

The thoughts and recommendations in this article are my personal views. There is no employer or organization affiliation with the data or recommendations presented in this

Views: 1930

Comment by Paul Alfred on October 21, 2010 at 9:33am
Ok but you have just blasted a blog that brought Recruiters out of the Woodworks - Some of the comments in the blog speak to how the market is evolving with the use of these tools and it also highlights how some companies are utilizing these tools and in my case how there being used in conjunction with Third Party Recruiters brought in internally ...

We either take a stance and say SM tools has no impact on our business or it does ... Blasting Mark's Credibility or lack there of - does not allow us to intelligently explore where the market is going and should we be paying close attention to this ...
Comment by Brian K. Johnston on October 21, 2010 at 9:46am
@Paul You do make a good point, and you are right about that... (open discussion) I still have a right to my opinion correct? Who is blasting who?

"R.I.P. Recruitment Search Agencies." (Mean Spirited)
"To the search agencies, R.I.P." (Elitist)
"We will miss the gift baskets around the holidays" (Sarcasm)
"It is with a deep heart that we say goodbye." (Arrogance)


I will let you community decide "Who is blasting who"?

We had this conversation when Monster came out... It is NOT the tools, it is the application of the tools, and when I do a search about this author, he has ZERO significant accomplishments with the "application of these tools"

Thanks for challenging my thinking Paul, I really appreciate it.. Best to YOU and ALL, Brian-
Comment by Maria DiLisio on October 21, 2010 at 2:04pm
Thanks for a very thought provoking post. As a recruiter with 18 years experience, I've worked in many roles within the industry; retained search agency, contingent search firm, independent consultant, and corporate staffing manager. I've worked for the "cushy paycheck" (but believe me I had accountability!), the down and dirty 100% contingency commissions, the tiny unlivable base salary plus commission (keeping us "hungry"), the 1099 hourly rate, etc. There has been one constant, and that was the work, which is by NO means *just* finding people. It's knowing the right person to find, finding them, then closing them. It's understanding the role/industry for that particular search, communicating effectively with hiring managers and candidates, balancing the needs of the organization with the needs of the candidate, counseling scared hiring managers and candidates to make that final decision, dancing the tightrope of tense offer negotiations, mentoring junior recruiters, researching trends and deciphering what is useful and what is not, sifting through piles of resumes, reading, talking, networking, selling, creating relationships that last beyond the start date, I could go on of course. Any good recruiter knows the list of skills they have to employ (pardon the pun) to get the job done. Don't get me wrong; I love social media, all the new tools out there, use them once I find them and continue to use them if they work. However - the basics of recruiting successfully stays the same, no matter what your venue. I think recently, companies have found they can employ good recruiters at hourly rates vs. retaining agencies to do the same for high fees- I believe staffing will always be about supply and demand and solutions will evolve and change accordingly. We happen to be in a downturn where there are many candidates, and many recruiters available. At the moment , companies have the luxury of using the most inexpensive choice for their hiring needs if they choose to. That may change if/when things pick back up again.
Comment by Philip Foti on October 21, 2010 at 4:40pm
Really silly logic.
Comment by Bill Ward on October 21, 2010 at 5:00pm
Bring it on dude.
Comment by Peter Ceccarelli on October 21, 2010 at 5:37pm
If Mark's intention and goal was to just generate a lot of responses, then he's succeeded. If his intention was to bring forth a healthy debate based on his personal, deep and innovative thoughts about the world of recruiting, then he missed BIG time. Ridiculous comes to mind and I'm one of those "recruiters on the inside", so in-house, which some of your think is the easy and cushie job. Right!

If in house recruiting functions were really as good as they think they are, then your business model would have succeeded ages ago. But it hasn't, and for a very simple reason.......sometimes we need help from the outside because either our work load is too much, or it's a very specialized skill set that many times only the 3rd party recruiter has deep enough roots to actually find someone who's qualified, and because we're connected to the entire HR function, we do a lot of other "non-recruiting" things in our jobs on a daily basis, so we just plain need help at times.

Amazon.com has been trying to build an inside sourcing/recruiting function as a way to move away from agencies for over a year now. And guess what? One.....they can't find the right people, so the postings have been up for well over a year. And two........like many of you have already stated.......why go in-house and work for less money than you can get if you're third party and really, really good at what you do. It's just not a black and white issue. There are many layer of gray in this debate. And it's a debate that you lost before you clicked on the "publish article button". How embarrassing for you!
Comment by Sandra McCartt on October 21, 2010 at 5:46pm
Dear Mark,
You know i love you and enjoy your writing. Although this one has generated a lot of buzz you should know by now that the way to send recruiters over the moon is to tell them they need to make out their last will and testament. The other downside to any of these "if you don't use all the new crap you are dead meat" posts is that old addage used from the dawn of recruiting to the present.

You are either a buyer or supplier. I am really glad that you enjoyed all those Christmas baskets and the camraderie of the recruiters who busted their butts to bring you the best candidates. Since you are sure that they are all about to die from lack of feeding you forgot that the pipeline runs both directions. I think it's great that you can find all those super dooper candidates by spending hours on social media building talent communities. Good Work. Get after it. Now we know where to find them. No reason for me to spend my life on Twitter and Facebook, i'll let you then when i need one i'll just call into your company and send them to my clients who still like those Christmas baskets.

Love and Kisses. If you need some backfills when the raid starts shoot me an email. :)
Comment by Peter Ceccarelli on October 21, 2010 at 5:51pm
Hey Robert Green.........stop with the arrogance and insults directed toward in-house HR and recruiting teams! Okay! You're probably the only one reading your posts. I get a couple of lines into them and by then I'm so offended, I give up. It takes ALL of us to be successfull. It takes the relationship with the in-house recruiter, linked to the TPR, who is sometimes linked to their sourcing person........to be truly successful. None of us is ever successful just because of our own efforts. And if you think that you are, then you're not dealing with reality.
Comment by Peter Ceccarelli on October 21, 2010 at 5:59pm
Comment by Jerry Albright 1 day ago I'm working on a blog right now that talks about how letting women into the workforce has ruined our economy over the past few decades - should be a pretty big hit. I need to get back on top here.......

Jerry........I can't wait. Sick sense of humor, but in a very good way! I'm sure you'll out-do this post when you publish!
Comment by Maureen Sharib on October 21, 2010 at 6:02pm
My good-mess - there's a tremendous amount of venting here.
I hope everyone feels better.
Yes, Robert, I'm that clever on the phone.
It's one reason my business is skyrocketing.


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