Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Recruitment Tips for Small Business

After 16 years of working in recruitment, I typically hear the same comments from HR managers, Directors and hiring managers about recruitment and the biggest of these is generally cost and quality of service. Recruitment companies cost us too much and we get poor candidates from them so I thought I would outline a few helpful hints as too how you can save money.

Firstly understanding how recruitment agencies work can give a good insight into what drives some of the behaviours that can be found out there. Most recruiters work on a contingency basis, that is you pay them if you find a candidate. Its low risk but you pay a huge premium for this. Recruiters have little confidence in you as a client, own the candidate IP rather than you so can sell them to other clients and are interested in making a fee so will show little loyalty to you as a client if a better role  or bigger fee comes up.

1.       Do you need to hire?
Often hiring is a reactive process, somebody has left or been performance managed out or in the worst case been dismissed and the immediate response is quickly ‘find me a replacement’. Companies should spend time evaluating whether they need to hire someone that is exactly the same, what the role will cover before starting the recruitment process. Often the role may change, somebody else internally may fit(see point 9) or the role can be covered by the existing team.
2.       Promote somebody and hire an apprentice( succession planning)
Do you succession plan? If a key member left, is there somebody ready or wanting to take on the role, does this mean you can hire a less experienced or qualified person and motivate your existing staff through promotion or job challenge?
3.       Write a good job spec
The recruitment process starts with writing the right job spec, which includes company brief, person profile, skills, and competencies. This will help make sure you recruit the right person.
4.       Do it yourself
There are a plethora of options available for companies to recruit themselves for value. The issue for most companies is the time to do this, but companies like Babbage Lovelace can help.
5.       Referrals
In local markets like Cleobury, odds on, somebody in your company will know someone who could do the job, how do you approach them, how do you get them to recommend them, do you have a referral system in place?
6.       Careers Page
It amazed me how many companies still don’t have a careers page that is up to date or allows candidates to add their CV’s to a talent pool. Particularly in areas like Cleobury where there is a small pool of people, building up a talent pool of the local market that you can approach when you have a job is essential to reducing your recruitment fees.
7.       Negotiate your fees
Most agencies are willing to negotiate, it’s a competitive marketplace out there, there are even sites that will auction your job for you.
8.       Exclusivity
If you are going to work with an agency, offer exclusivity in return for specific returns, exclusive ownership of candidates, lower fees, free advertising or research.
9.       Contract management
Companies that use lots of contractors can often make savings through better contract management, either through an Recruit Process Outsourcer, standardisation of rates, volume rate negotiation. This all starts with an audit internally to capture the current start of what you have.

A good process to follow is 

Do we need the job?
Is there anybody internally who is planned or would be capable of the job
Do we have anybody in our talent pool that would be interested in the job
Does our workforce know anybody for the job?
Can we do it ourselves?
Go external to an agency? Negotiate, Exclusivity!

Babbage Lovelace In-House recruitment specialise in providing recruitment services by the hour in a fully transparent manner for SME companies. We offer a free one hour consultation to discuss key challenges you might be facing.