The truth is that clients are deserting the recruitment industry in droves. In many cases they are cynical about our value and skeptical about our ability to deliver anything they can’t get themselves. As we are all aware, they are building sophisticated systems, and hiring internal recruiting experts, specifically to cut out third-party recruiters. And the impact is real and being felt everywhere.
The RIB Report in Australia shows recruitment agency profits declining. The Plimsoll report in the UK tells us 20% of recruitment businesses are losing money, and half of those are on the “critical’ list.
So what is it that clients WILL pay us for? What do they actually want?
This video interview, with Greg Savage and Ted Elliot, CEO of recruitment ATS system, Jobscience gives us a lucid insight
Key points include
- Clients are looking for something different to what they were previously prepared to pay for.
- The overriding issue is access to unique talent. Corporates will use a niche recruiting firm, with proven methods to get hidden gems they can’t find themselves. The easily found candidate is not what they will pay a recruitment company for. Scrumming with five other agencies in a résumé race to represent the best of the job board-sourced candidates is not a business model that continues to work. Recruiters need to be expert at talent identification.
- Recruiters need to build a talent community, including an integrated social media and digital marketing network so they can build a strong employer brand, engage with talent and can access people before they are ready to move.
- While they don’t even realise it yet, in the context of massive skills shortages looming, clients will pay for the ‘the human element’ provided by recruitment companies with highly evolved skills in the craft of recruitment. There will be a premium for recruiters who have the ability to bring highly sought after talent to the hiring table. In other words, finding a person is one thing, but recruiting them, managing them and getting them to an interview with your client is a whole different skill set, as is the skill to negotiate the inevitable counter-offer.