How Your Direct Hire Agency Is Sizing You Up

When you set out to find a new direct hire agency, or evaluate an existing one, past performance is a key indication of what you can expect in the future.You wouldn’t want to work with a recruiter who takes too long to submit candidates, has a low interview rate, or a low candidate placement rate, because you want to reach your hiring goals as quickly as possible (that is, without sacrificing candidate quality).

At the same time, direct hire agencies also have goals they need to reach – and they’re sizing you up to determine if they want to take you on as a new client, or continue working with you.

They’re busy juggling clients, candidates and job requisitions, and need to prioritize each to ensure the maximum use of their time. If you want to make it to the top of that list, it may be time to do a quick internal evaluation to see if you make the cut, or how you can improve.

Here are a few ways you’re being evaluated:

  1. How many days does a resume sit before it’s opened and reviewed? Once a recruiter sends you a resume, how long does it sit in your inbox before you review it? Your recruiter works hard to provide you with great candidates, and benefits from your quick review in two ways. First, it helps them hold on to great candidates. Top candidates have a choice in where they work, and may move quickly.

    If a great candidate’s resume is just sitting in your inbox, the recruiter can’t place them with you or another client. Second, your feedback about each candidate, whether positive or negative, helps them find additional candidates for you. They don’t want to run too far in the wrong direction any more than they want their candidates to whither away in your inbox, so it’s crucial that you review resumes in a timely manner if you want to continue receiving great candidates.

  2. How quickly do you respond to your recruiters? Do you communicate in a timely manner throughout the hiring process? In addition to resume feedback, recruiters also need feedback at each stage in your recruiting process and need to be aware if the next steps are being delayed for any reason.

    For one, they need to share updates with their candidates – but they’d also like to let you know if you’re at risk for losing any of your top choice candidates. Communication is the key to your recruiter being able to provide you, and your candidates, with great service.

  3. What does your submission funnel look like? How many candidates do they submit to you, versus how many do you actually interview? How many jobs do they submit candidates for, versus how many jobs do they successfully fill? Since contingency recruiters only get paid when they make a placement, they want to make sure that their efforts are paying off.

    So, if you tend to throw away (or allow to expire) great candidates, or often cancel your job reqs before a successful placement is made, the recruiter has done quite a bit of work for nothing and may decide not to work with you again in the future. It’s also possible that you and your recruiter simply don’t work well together – and that the candidates being submitted aren’t quite the ones you want to interview or hire. If that’s the case, it’s in both parties’ best interest to terminate the contract.

So, remember that when you’re sizing up your direct hire agencies, they’re looking right back at you. If you want your jobs to be at the top of their priority list so you can see the best candidates, show your agency that you’re invested in the relationship as much as they are.

Review resumes quickly, communicate often, and keep the hiring process moving. While a recruiter doesn’t realistically expect that you’ll interview and hire each candidate they submit, they do expect you to provide feedback on each candidate to improve their chances of a successful placement.

2017-08-03T05:22:09+00:00 March 6th, 2015|

About the Author:

Jen Dewar is a marketing consultant in the HR technology space with a focus on developing educational content for recruiters, corporate HR professionals, and staffing agency owners. She has spent the past 10 years working with a wide variety of companies — from corporate marketing for healthcare organizations and recruitment firms, to startup marketing for both Identified and Bright.com, prior to their respective acquisitions. When she's not doing marketing, you can find Jen snowboarding in Tahoe with her husband, traveling abroad, or enjoying a night in with friends and a good bottle of wine. She's a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara, with a degree in Socio-Economic and Political Global Studies.