How to use a recruitment agency

Creating job ads, finding the right publications and websites to put them in and filtering through hundreds of applications - or, if you get it wrong, none at all - can be incredibly time-consuming.  If you think there are better things you could be doing with your time, it might be worth getting a recruitment agency to do the hard work for you.  Here's what to consider:

  • Why use an agency
  • Choosing an agency
  • What to provide your agency with

Why use an agency

By using a recruitment agency you can avoid the slog of placing adverts then going through the bulk of applications - so you can focus instead on the candidates who make the shortlist. They'll also already have potential candidates on their books, and are often specialised in their sector.  They also know where to find people and what to expect, and can be discreet about advertising roles.

  • Save time
  • Get specialist knowledge
  • Search discreetly

Choosing an agency

Use agencies that specialise in segments of the recruitment market that match your need.  You should also ask whether the agency specialises in terms and/or consultants, or full time staff.  Don't be afraid to quiz them about their track record and expertise. Ask for customer references or testimonials or talk directly to someone who has used them.

  • Go to the specialists
  • Check up on their references and experience

What to provide your agency with

Look carefully at your company's requirements and provide your recruitment agency with a full job description.  You should agree a fee structure before you start. This should include the cost of advertising and provisions should a particular hire prove unsuitable.

  • Provide a full job description
  • Agree a fee before you start - inclusive of advertising
  • Work out what will happen if things don't work out

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