How to Limit Your Recruitment Costs Without Impacting The Quality of Hire

How to Limit Your Recruitment Costs Without Impacting The Quality of Hire

When budgets are tight for businesses, recruitment can’t always take a priority. Finding the right talent uses time, money and resource that could be spent elsewhere, taking care of existing employees. The impending threat of a post-COVID19 recession is making many businesses question their future recruitment efforts and forcing them to think about cost-cutting measures.

When it comes to sourcing and hiring talent, cutting corners can often mean higher costs in the long run; it’s very much a buy cheap, buy twice situation. Refusing to recruit and freezing hiring altogether could lead to employee burnout and the eventual high recruitment costs of replacing your worn-out staff. Similarly, if you rush into hiring the first person that comes along, as you believe it will be convenient and save money, you run the risk of a lower quality hire. According to a recent survey, bad hires produce lower-quality work, delay company goals, are more likely to make an early exit and can even cause other employees to leave. All of which are costly mistakes that businesses can’t afford to make, especially in times of financial crisis.

So how can organisations work with limited recruitment budgets without impacting the quality of hires?

Embrace Automation

Automating your recruitment process, or at least some elements of it, will not only save you valuable time and money, but it will increase overall efficiency and is proven to generate a better quality of hire. Automation doesn’t replace HR teams or recruiters but allows them to do their job in a more streamlined way, which will help cut recruitment costs. Some of the services you can automate include; programmatic job advertising, applicant tracking and candidate screening; all of which have previously been time-consuming tasks.

Automating candidate communications not only saves time and resources but improves the candidate experience and consequently, your employer brand. It’s crucial to maintain a relationship with candidates throughout the entire hiring process not just when they’re actively being interviewed and considered but also if they’re unsuccessful; it’s only polite to let them know. Automated email flows nurture candidates, ensuring they stay engaged, don’t lose interest in the role and may consider applying for a more suitable position in the future. Owing to this, automating candidate communications can reduce your overall cost per hire by up to 39%.

Build a Talent Pool

On average, advertising a vacancy costs $500 per day. According to LinkedIn, only 30% of companies can fill a vacant role within 30 days; others can take up to 4 months. So, it’s clear that recruiting can become pretty costly.

Having a ready-to-hire talent pool can significantly reduce these costs as it eliminates the need to advertise every single vacancy and results in faster hires. Building a talent pool ensures that you have a diverse mix of qualified and appropriate candidates at your fingertips. The candidates have all registered interest in your company showing a willingness to hear about you and current vacancies, which means they’re more than likely to accept an offer.

Combining a memorable recruitment marketing campaign, data management and candidate nurturing strategy, you can significantly reduce the cost of recruiting in the future as you’ll have a pool of talent ready to dip into as roles become available.

Introduce Employee Referral Programmes

Employee referral programmes are a great way of enticing new hires on a lower budget. As these candidates know someone within your business and are aware of how great you are as an employer, their willingness to work for you and knowledge of your company is second to none. Employee referral programmes give employers access to individuals with hard to source skills, as it’s likely that most connections have a similar background to your existing staff. It’s also expected that candidates will have been pre-qualified by the individual recommending them; after all, no one wants to endorse an unsuitable hire!

82% of employers rate employee referrals above all other sources for generating the best return on investment as they produce better quality hires and can fill roles quickly. In fact, statistics show 1 in 5 referrals result in a hire. 

Referral programmes also help to improve employee engagement and retention, as your existing employees feel they are helping the business to grow and contributing positively.

Target the right talent

With digital marketing techniques becoming more advanced every day, the possibilities for targeting are endless. This means you aren’t wasting budget advertising your vacancies where anyone can see them and apply; instead, you’re ensuring your adverts reach relevant, qualified and interested individuals. Whether your ads are appearing on websites where your target candidates are spending time, reaching individuals that meet your criteria on social media or even displaying for those who have been on your website; with new technologies the possibilities are endless. Save yourself time and money with smarter recruitment marketing campaigns.

Optimise job listings to match what candidates are searching for

If you need to advertise a job through traditional methods like job boards, make sure you do your research before crafting a job description. Write a poor job description or fail to optimise it for what your ideal candidate will search for and you’ll be writing it (and paying for it) twice.

Fancy job titles may seem like a way to attract the best talent; however, it can lead to overqualified and unsuitable individuals applying or a lack of applicants because they can’t find your advert in the first place. Make sure your job titles match other roles in your industry, that people are likely to be searching for and understand. Then ensure your job descriptions are clear and concise. Yes, we want to grab attention and stand out from the competition, but this is a waste of time and money unless candidates can see what the job involves and if they’re suitable for the role.

Reduce the number of interviewees

Interviews are a time-consuming and expensive part of the recruitment process; sometimes they can mean members of staff are spending a number of significant hours in their working week in meetings with candidates. If you want to save recruitment costs, a robust screening process is essential as it reduces the number of interviewees and saves valuable time; we all know time is money. After initial screening, consider asking candidates to complete an assessment test (if it’s appropriate to the role). If a candidate completes them, not only will you be able to see how good they are, but you can see their dedication for taking the time to complete it and the quality of the result. If the role doesn’t have any requirements you can test for, consider video interviewing as a cheaper and quicker alternative to a face to face interview. COVID-19 has made zoom calls and video chats the norm, and there are ways to use them after the crisis as a cost-effective recruitment solution. Video interviews will help you to whittle down your candidates and ensure only the best are invited to a face-to-face interview, saving time and money.

Outsource your recruitment process

While it’s often considered an expensive approach to recruiting, outsourcing your hiring efforts to expert recruiters can save you a significant amount of money. By using experts in recruitment and in specific industries, you’ll have access to all the secrets and know-how which will find better quality hires. Whether it’s working on your employer brand, filling urgent vacancies, building a talent pool or working on plans for expansion; outsourcing can help take the pressure off HR and provide cost-effective results. It means your recruitment process will be streamlined and efficient from the get-go and avoids the risk of costly mistakes.

Reduce employee turnover with a better EVP

A final way to reduce your recruitment costs is to reduce your need for recruitment. By refining your employee value proposition, taking care of your existing staff and giving them benefits that are not only useful but enhance their life and career, you’ll improve retention rates. An appealing employee value proposition gives you a competitive edge, retains candidates that support your brand vision and values as well as encourages employees to act as ambassadors for your brand. It’s reported that a well-executed EVP can reduce employee turnover by 69%. If your talented people want to remain working with you even during a global crisis, you’ll save on recruitment costs when finances are tight. Refining your EVP will help prevent the replacement of existing staff and will reduce recruitment costs on a long-term basis.

To attract talent, you don’t have to spend a lot of money; you just need to be smarter with your recruitment strategy. If a recession hits, pausing recruitment won’t help your business to progress, but altering your approach to staffing and thinking outside of the box could help give you that competitive edge. If you need help with intelligent recruitment marketing, building talent pools, refining your EVP or outsourcing any other aspect of your recruitment process, the Talent Works team will be happy to help, so get in touch.

Here’s Why You Should Be Building a Ready-to-Hire Talent Pool During Lockdown

Are you using your time in lockdown to your business’ advantage? Whilst this is an unpredictable and overwhelming time, it could also be the ideal time to work on your business and open your mind to new ideas.

There’s never been a better time to assess your organisation to help you to prepare for life after COVID19, including the people within it.

Recruitment is a topic many businesses are shying away from right now, and it’s difficult to plan which roles you’ll be ready to fill when the pandemic is over. However, there is a way you can ensure that when you can hire, the best people are ready and waiting.

Building a pool of suitable candidates interested in working for you, can be done through smart recruitment marketing, social media and digital campaigns. You can also include previous applicants, sourced and referred candidates to fill your database with talented people. A talent pool is almost a queue of candidates ready to step into roles including a wide range of skills and people at different stages of the candidate journey. In a world of data-driven recruiting, talent pools are more useful than ever before.

But if you’re still wondering if spending your time in lockdown building a talent pool is a good move for your business, here are just a few reasons why.

Talent is ready and waiting for you

It may seem like an obvious point to begin with but building a talent pool now means that when you can hire again, and hopefully you will be soon, the talent will be ready and waiting for you. By putting in the hard work now, you’ll have a group of engaged and talented candidates ready to contact as soon as roles become available. As they’ve registered their contact details with you, you can be confident that they are interested in working for your business, which give you a head start once it’s back to “business as usual.”

Better quality of hire

Because you aren’t rushing to fill urgent requirements, using this time to build a talent pool means that you have longer to collate and source the best talent, which is a luxury that is rarely available. With a wide range of individuals and skills to choose from in your talent pool, all of whom are ready to start working, you’ll be able to compare expertise to find the best talent for you.

As there is less rush to fill key roles, it also means you won’t miss out on talented candidates that may miss the deadline by a few days. Instead, you’ll have collated them over the lockdown period, however long that may be.

Greater diversity

As you aren’t recruiting for a specific role, your recruitment marketing campaigns will attract an incredibly diverse and varied range of candidates. By advertising your proposition digitally, using social media, paid media and through attraction campaigns, you’ll be able to appeal to a wide range of people globally (of course for practical reasons location targeting can be much more specific).

With a talent pool, there is no end to the talent on offer to you. You’ll be able to attract people with skills that you didn’t even know your business needed but, when reviewing the talent pool, you’ll realise will be crucial to driving your business forward post coronavirus.  

Faster hires

It should go without saying but having suitable talent at your disposal will make filling vacancies a much quicker and smoother process. When you’re eventually ready to hire again, it will be beneficial if you can hire talented people quickly so that critical roles can be filled, and your business can return to normal! This will give you more time to focus on growing and rebuilding other aspects of your business, knowing that the recruitment side is very much under control.

Plus, with many people, unfortunately, being made redundant as a result of COVID-19, the sad truth is that the faster you can make a talented candidate an offer, the more likely they are to accept. In the aftermath of a pandemic, people will need employment and crave job security. As much as we hate to admit it, when it comes to the best talent, it may just be the early bird that gets the worm.

Reduces the cost of recruitment

Investing in building a talent pool now could potentially save you a lot of money down the line. You can significantly cut back the costs of advertising every job that becomes available, using external recruitment agencies for individual roles and even reduce the amount of admin work which costs both time and money. With a strong recruitment marketing campaign, data management system and ways of keeping in touch with your prospects, you can significantly reduce the amount you spend on recruiting in the future.

Instead of advertising individual roles for a high cost, you can dive into your talent pool and select the candidates with relevant skills and experience. The money you save can be better spent on rebuilding areas of your business that have been affected by COVID-19 or improving the experience of your existing employees.

Identify future needs and future talent

Having interested talent in front of you means that you can see and compare all candidates at once. You can identify the individuals who have the right expertise for you right now but also any individuals that may be able to grow with your business; for example, someone may have the practical skills you need but with minimal leadership experience. This is your chance to help them develop and offer a career opportunity which should give you a competitive edge as an employer.

A talent pool can also help you to identify areas of your business that you may want to invest in in the future. For example, if you have a lot of developers showing interest, this may help you to envisage a digital transformation for your business after COVID-19, enhancing your business offering.

Improved candidate experience

Another advantage of building a talent pool for recruiting is that there is less rejection. As candidates are not applying for specific roles, you don’t have to turn them down. Instead, you can hold onto their details for when something appropriate comes along. This is a much more empowering method of recruitment and means that candidates are left with a favourable opinion of your company, even if they aren’t successful straight away.

Build relationships with candidates 

The talent pool approach to recruitment is largely candidate-centric, giving candidates more control. It helps you to build long term relationships, giving the candidates a chance to learn more about your business and what you can offer them. They’ll become familiar with your employer brand as they follow you on social media, receive your email updates and even research your business on their own. This makes it much more likely that a candidate will want to work for you, increasing the chances of your offer being accepted. Regular updates and content are essential to maintaining your talent pool; this provides more touchpoints to capture the attention of passive candidates and helps you to build relationships.

Talent pools also encourage two-way communication; unlike standard recruitment practise where the employer holds all the cards, engaging with your talent pool creates opportunities for candidates to talk to you. This improves the candidate experience massively as the recruitment process feels much less lonely and more transparent.

To find out more about how you can build a ready-to-hire talent pool, get in touch with the team at Talent Works International. Our experts can help you to conduct talent attraction campaigns, manage candidate data and most importantly build up and maintain your talent pool ready for when this pandemic is over.

How to Adapt Your Hiring Plans in a Crisis

If, in light of current events, recruiting has taken a back seat for your business you’re not alone. For many trying to get through the Covid-19 crisis and the resulting lockdown means that hiring new team members and expanding the business has taken a temporary back seat so that they can focus on business as usual, taking care of employees and making sure the business can weather the storm.

However, the storm will clear. We all know that bad times don’t last forever. While your hiring plans are quite literally on lockdown, you’ll need to think about attracting talent again (hopefully) soon. While you’re remote working, you’re saving time that would be spent commuting and business may feel slower than usual while the world gets back on its feet; so there’s never been a better time to think about your hiring strategy and plan for when brighter days do come. While filling specific roles may not be a priority right now, there are certain things you can do to ensure that your business is ahead of the game when business is back to normal.

Here are our tips for adapting your recruitment strategy. Ensure that when the time is right, you’re ready to bring the brightest and best people to your business to ensure that you stay a step ahead of your competitors.

Over the next few weeks we’ll be going into more detail about all these topics, so watch this space as we help you to prepare for a future of talent attraction.

Identify areas to grow

All recruitment strategies begin with working out what roles you need to fill and where. Even when you aren’t thinking about a specific role, this is still essential. Take this quiet time as an opportunity to create, or re-evaluate, long-term plans.

Map existing talent in your organisation to gain further insight into available skillsets, as well as to identify areas where your business may be lacking. Take a look at your competitors’ company structure and the services they offer to identify areas in your business which may need improvement. This will help you to plan for training and expansion when the time is right.

Look at your industry, think of what is changing. It’s unlikely that you’ll have this much time to think creatively about your business again, so make sure you take full advantage. This is a time to innovate and think for the future. And as you have more downtime, lockdown is the perfect time to ensure that your strategic plan for the business and talent strategy is aligned. Do you plan to undergo a digital transformation to take your services to the next level? Then you’ll need to ensure you have the best tech and digital talent to take on the challenge.

Don’t get bogged down in specifics

Contrary to traditional recruitment processes, an uncertain time is not the time to plan for filling a single specific role. Instead, it’s time to think big. Review the skills you’ll need and the type of people you’ll need to fill them but don’t limit yourself to a single role. Sometimes an individual can be multi-talented, other times it may be that there’s scope for an entirely new department. Restricting your recruitment plans to a few specific roles will narrow your thinking and when it doesn’t look like you’ll be actively hiring for the foreseeable, why limit yourself?

You can work on the specific roles needed when it comes to crafting your job descriptions and advertising; until then there is potential to discover roles you didn’t even know you needed so do your research and keep an open mind.

Analyse your employer brand

You could also use this time to review your employer brand and how you’re perceived by potential employees. Your employer brand refers to how candidates and people that could work for your business view you as an employer; in a time of crisis, this is your time to shine.

Showcase how you’re supporting your employees on social media and shout about how you’re helping the wider community during these uncertain times. Caring employers are a priority for so many people, even the already employed may consider leaving jobs for a more conscientious business. So many organisations are receiving negative publicity over how they’ve treated staff amid the coronavirus crisis, and this will come back to bite them when the situation returns to normal; use this to your advantage.

While recruitment may not be your priority right now, if you focus on building your employer brand during this lockdown, it will make attracting talent much easier when it is a focus for you. Do people want to work for you? If not, what can you do now to change this, so they do in a few months? Think about your benefits package, consider making working from home a more permanent solution and work out how to become an employer of choice.

Develop the pool

Although hiring specific individuals may be off the table, it doesn’t mean you can’t register their interest. Jobs may not be open at your business until you reach a state of stability, and candidates understand that. However, it doesn’t stop you from collecting the details of interested individuals and preparing a talent pool that you can dip into as roles become available. Having an easily accessible pool of ready-to-apply candidates means that you’ll save money, time and resource when you do recruit. Talented people will be ready and waiting for you!

Use social media, landing pages and email campaigns amongst other strategies to attract and nurture your talent pools. Then the second a position becomes available; you will have applicants at your fingertips. Remember to cast a wide net to ensure that you’re attracting a diverse range of people; diversity will help to drive your business forward and open you up to new ways of thinking.

Change the candidate experience

If you are lucky enough to be in the position to recruit over the coming weeks despite the lockdown, then it’s likely that you’ll have to make changes to your traditional interview process in the interest of everyone’s safety. The majority of companies have adopted a remote working strategy and so remote interviewing comes as no surprise, especially when we’re only allowed to leave our homes for essentials. Phone and video interviews are about to become a lot more commonplace so make sure you’re confident in using any video interview software to avoid any embarrassing slip-ups.

Candidate experience is more paramount than ever as all companies are trying to tempt the best tech talent and individuals that will push the business forward through these challenging times. Downtime for the business created by global lockdown is the perfect time to refine the candidate experience so that lengthy applications, clunky processes and ignoring candidate enquiries become a thing of the past; this will only strengthen your employer brand.

So, there you have it, a global crisis may not be the perfect time to recruit but it is an ideal time to plan for the future. Use your lockdown wisely!

Talent Works offer a wide range of recruitment services from outsourcing parts of the process to helping build your employer brand. We use insight, knowledge and industry experience to help you create a robust recruitment strategy that will be ready to implement as soon as your business is ready.

Keep an eye out for more blogs on how to use recruitment services and strategy to plan for the future once the COVID-19 pandemic is over.

RPO and in-house recruitment: What’s the difference?

When scaling your business, you will eventually reach a point at which your recruitment system isn’t enough to fulfil your sudden growing need for more people. At that point, you reach a junction in the road. Do you…

  1. Expand your in-house recruitment team?
  2. Work with an RPO provider?

Well, firstly, let’s explain the difference between the two options.

Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO)

RPO is a type of recruitment solution in which an organisation hands over the entirety of its recruitment processes to an external provider.

Otherwise, it can also be used when an organisation wants to outsource part of their recruitment processes, due to a sudden need to scale, or a need for specialist recruiters. For example, a non-tech organisation looking to expand its tech department might outsource its tech recruitment needs, but keep the rest of their processes inhouse. So, they can make use of an external provider’s talent pipelines, talent pools, and specialist recruitment knowledge.

In-house Recruitment

In-house recruitment is generally used by businesses large enough to have internal processes, but without the need to scale rapidly. Having an internal team can ensure recruiters know your business inside out and how to sell it to clients, guaranteeing good stakeholder management and intrinsic knowledge of cultural fit. As well as this, when you have an urgent need to recruit, an in-house recruitment team is right there, ready to start the process.

Which is better for your business?

Both recruitment methods have their benefits. Either could be a more suitable option depending on your business’ needs. For example, how many people need to be taken on, and how quickly? Are you hiring for a specific division that requires specialist recruiters?

Ultimately, both RPO and in-house recruitment are different approaches to a recruitment need. As such, they shouldn’t be compared side by side as if one is intrinsically better than the other. However, in certain situations, one will be more useful and achieve better results than the other.

When it comes to rapid scaling, RPO is the most efficient option for finding quality hires quickly while enhancing an organisations employer brand and recruitment processes.

There are several reasons for this. Primarily, they come down to the fact that an RPO provider is uniquely equipped to source the number of hires a scaling company needs while providing their expertise on talent attraction. 

After all, an RPO solution is not just a method to make hires.

Where utilising external recruiters in other circumstances may result in a “bums on seats” attitude, RPO is designed to provide a more specialised approach to recruitment. As a result, some RPO providers incorporate many different specialisms into their offering to provide a much broader solution to organisations looking to scale. For example, some RPO providers incorporate digital, creative, and insight specialisms into their services. As a consequence, RPO’s are equipped to achieve far more than an in-house recruitment team ever could.

An RPO can be reactive to your recruitment needs

RPO providers understand that often, employers are limited in their ability to predict how the market will affect their need to hire.

So, while an organisation might think they need a certain amount of hires, a turn in the market could mean that they need to scale their recruitment project down. Similarly, the market could turn in the other direction, causing the business to need even more hires.

How can an RPO react to changes in the market?

Scaling a project up or down is no problem for an RPO provider, which can easily add more recruiters to a project or take them off. That is the beauty of working with an agency that has a large number of recruiters at their fingertips. However, with an in-house solution, an organisation commits to a certain amount of recruiters and cannot provide a responsive service as recruitment needs increase or decrease. 

Naturally, a flexible, scalable RPO solution should save money overall by being able to provide the service needed at the time. Investing in an in-house recruitment solution can be costly without the ability to scale your recruitment project according to need.

As well as this, RPO recruiters are experts.

Many RPO providers will specialise in a particular field. This is good for them as it means they can concentrate on an area and become a formidable presence in that field. Similarly, it is good for employers as it means they have access to a solution that comes complete with specialised recruiters, in-depth industry knowledge, and a vast talent pool of potential candidates.

All these benefits can result in better quality hires, a reduced time-to-hire, and increased retention rates, as RPO recruiters have the time and resources needed to source the best candidates.

So, RPO or in-house recruitment?

In-house recruitment is ideal for large organisations with no urgent needs to scale rapidly. However, for businesses looking to grow and root themselves firmly in the market, with the best talent available, partnering with an RPO provider is the most effective solution to those pressing recruitment needs.

After all, what’s a business without good people? According to Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, “acquiring the right talent is the most important key to growth.” So, as long as you have the right solution in place to source the talent you need, you can rest assured your business will continue to go from strength to strength.

Startups: When you should speak to an RPO provider

All businesses have different recruitment needs, and an RPO isn’t always the right answer. For startups, it can be tricky trying to gauge which recruitment solution is right for your organisation when there are so many options. Should you employ an agency, hire your own internal recruiters, or start a partnership with an RPO provider?

To help you understand when an RPO provider is the right choice for your agency, we’ve summed up some tell-tale signs of an agency ready for growth.

When you’ve secured more funding

You’ve got more money behind you, and you need to invest it wisely in the future of your organisation. The people you hire as you move forward will be the backbone of your company. Setting up a relationship with an RPO at this point in your growth strategy is a great way to ensure you make quality hires.

As well as this, utilising an RPO can reduce your time-to-hire due to already having access to a talent pool, reduce your cost-per-hire, increase retention rates and improve your recruitment processes overall. An insight-led, digital marketing strategy backed up by the experience of an RPO provider can help you attract top talent and help you establish your employer brand.

When you have product/market fit

According to Medium, product/market fit “means being in a good market with a product that can satisfy that market.” So, essentially, if you have product/market fit, your product is what people want. This means your company needs to scale to meet pressing demand. You need a flexible partner, as the market can change on a whim and your needs may change. So, you need a flexible RPO.

Taking on in-house recruiters can be a risk when you can’t be entirely sure how many hires you’re going to need in the long run. With a flexible RPO solution, you can safely plan to take on a large number of hires, then scale that right down should the market turn in the opposite direction. Or, should demand for your product increase, a flexible RPO can then scale up, putting more recruiters on the job to fill your open positions.

As a result, a flexible RPO could save your company money with a risk-free solution that responds to the market place, just like your hiring needs.

To meet your growth plans

If you have plans in place for the future of your organisation, an RPO partnership can create a talent pipeline so you can fulfil those plans when the time comes. Hiring, after all, is not just about the here and now. A good hiring strategy requires businesses to think about the future, about what roles they will need filling and when, ideally, they’d like them filled by.

Working with an RPO partnership can give you tools to identify the suitability of internal candidates. So, you can prepare them for future progression, and create a talent pool of external candidates for other roles. Then, when the time comes, you can fill positions swiftly, reducing both your cost and time-per-hire and improving retention rates.

Why is RPO the best option for start-ups?

An RPO partnership can enable you to scale your start-up at the rate you need, providing you with a dedicated recruitment team without requiring you to build your internal recruitment resources. Working with a provider is all about implementing solutions to help your company attract and retain top talent. An RPO partnership can turn your recruitment processes around, making your startup an employer of choice in an overcrowded market.

As we know, tech talent is in high demand, and the market is candidate-driven. Roles in tech are set to increase 13% up to 2026, but there is a shortage “of people who know how to code” and Universities are only just mobilising to fill the current talent gap. So, make sure your company is ahead of the game with a flexible RPO solution, filling your vacancies now and planning ahead for the future of your company.

There’s loads more to know about RPO, and we know it can all get a little bit confusing. So, check out our RPO eBook to help you understand the benefits of an RPO solution.

3 key ways to assess the success of your RPO partnership

So, you’ve decided which RPO provider to go with, and you’re about to sign up and hand over to them. Your job is done.

Except… it isn’t.

Choosing your RPO provider is only the beginning.

After all, an RPO is a partnership. So, as the process moves forward, how do you continue to assess the success of this partnership? How do you evaluate whether your goals are being met, and your processes are transforming?

Of course, the hires being made are vital to this. However, there is much more to an RPO partnership than filling roles. An RPO provider works with an organisation not just to fill roles, but to improve their recruitment processes as a whole.  

To make a real difference and enable a business to scale and transform, an RPO should be insight-led.

So, we’ve come up with 3 key ways to help you assess if your partnership with your RPO provider is doing what it needs to do.

Firstly, before an RPO begins, there should be a thorough implementation process.

This process should clarify that your provider knows what they’re doing and when it needs to be done by. To help employers understand if the RPO has been implemented properly, we’ve identified 6 steps of implementation.


The provider should first outline what the aims of the project are and how those are going to be achieved. 


This stage identifies the methods agreed upon in the pre-planning stage in more detail. As a result, this phase should cover timelines, metrics, current and future EVP status, processes, forecasts, policies, and procedures.


At this stage, the key information and strategies should be communicated to the internal organisation.


Then, any recommendations for change, with a full analysis of the potential impact, should be presented to the organisation.


As a result of any changes, the RPO should identify if any training needs to take place to ensure there are no limits or negative impact on the new procedures. 

Sign off

Once the processes have been agreed upon and the RPO is live, there should be a thorough analysis of the project for the first 30 days. This should ensure that moving forward, any relevant changes can be made.

Secondly, an RPO should review the partnership at regular intervals.

Every provider will do this differently, whether it’s weekly, quarterly, monthly, or all 3. Ultimately, a partnership is effective as long as it is continuing to meet business needs.

As such, an RPO partnership should be flexible, as those needs may change. What your business needs at the start of the relationship may not be what you need 6 months down the line. So, the RPO should be flexible to meet these potential changes in requirements. 

Ultimately, these needs should not focus solely on numbers. After all, if your RPO partnership is providing your business with invaluable insight these regular reviews should be enabling your business to transform its recruitment processes. An insight-led RPO should provide your business with information on the market that could have an impact on your processes.

For example, if your brand awareness as an employer is low, or the salaries you are offering are below market rate, you need to be aware of these issues to implement changes. Insights such as these, along with consistently evolving solutions, should give your company the tools it needs to become a leader in the market.

Thirdly, an RPO should provide your organisation with the relevant metrics.

More specifically, these metrics should be different depending on who they are being reported to. For example, the Hiring Manager does not need the same information as the HR department.

As such, they should tailor their metrics to the audience receiving them. So, the hiring manager should have an in-depth understanding of the candidate market and current challenges, while the HR department should be informed of both cost and time per-hire. As a result, every member of the team should have the tools they need to focus on their goals.

As well as this, an RPO provider might provide live metrics which are accessible online to those who need to see them, when they need to see them. No matter the method, your organisation should have consistent assurance that your project is running smoothly.

So, to sum up?  

An RPO should not just provide your organisation with hires. When implemented effectively, an RPO should give your organisation the tools it needs to improve its processes moving forward. This should affect everything from your recruitment marketing and employer brand to your onboarding processes, EVP, and internal culture.   

Ultimately, a good RPO relies on a solid foundation of communication and honesty. Outsourcing your recruitment processes won’t always produce instant results. However, it will transform your organisation in the long run by enabling you to source, hire, and retain the talent you need to succeed.

For more information about RPO, you can download our RPO eBook here, or get in contact with us at

RPO for digital transformation

What is digital transformation?

The term digital transformation sounds complicated. However, it’s very much what it sounds like.

As technology advances, organisational processes need to change and adapt to keep up. When a company adapts to these changes on a large scale across the organisation, this is called digital transformation.

When an organisation transforms its processes to embrace new technologies, it can be a daunting task. There will be big changes to handle and, as well as this, smaller processes that also need to change. Overall, digital transformation requires time, patience and a dedicated workforce.

It’s this last part that we’re particularly interested in.

A crucial part of any digital overhaul is having the right employees in place to push it forward.

In many companies undergoing a digital transformation, this requires all new hires in brand new job roles. Often, the number of hires needed indicates the need for a brand new tech department, especially in typically non-tech organisations.

Why are organisations undergoing digital transformation?

Digital transformation matters because if companies don’t keep up with technological innovations and digital processes, they are likely to lose out.

This loss can take many forms, but the ultimate cost is a financial one. According to research, “there is the potential for over $18 trillion of new value to be harvested”. So, digital transformation is an investment in the future of an organisation.

Ultimately, if companies want to be around for the long haul, they need to remain relevant. If they don’t, they will be overtaken by other companies with a more up-to-date offering. Once an organisation drops behind, it will take twice as long to catch up as it would to have got ahead in the first place.

Imagine the future of tech in business. According to Deloitte’s 10th annual tech trends report, “advanced networking, serverless computing, and intelligent interfaces will reshape business processes in the coming years.” All these innovations will speed up processes so that organisations can achieve far more in less time.

So, how can RPO help?

The number of hires needed to fulfil a complete digital transformation often far exceed an organisation’s current recruitment capacity. Outsourcing your tech recruitment needs can be the simplest, most cost-effective way to ensure your organisation attracts the right talent.

You can find out more about an RPO can help solve your tech recruitment needs here.

How can your company attract the right tech talent?

Any company looking to make an increase in hires needs to consider both their employer brand and employee value proposition.

The current market is overwhelmingly candidate-driven. So, there are fewer candidates than there are jobs. This becomes particularly apparent when trying to fill tech roles. Despite tech innovations being predicted to erase the need for manual job roles, research has shown technology has “created more jobs than it has destroyed.” However, the current workforce is struggling to provide the skills needed to fill these roles.

While internal training programmes and investment in the upcoming generations can solve these problems for the future, for now, there is a talent shortage. This means companies need to ensure they are ahead of the competition for the tech talent that can help to transform their company.

The benefits of an RPO partnership will naturally give an organisation the added benefits they need, with specialised, experienced recruiters and skill-specific talent pools at their fingertips. However, any organisation looking to make a dramatic increase in hires needs to refine its employer brand.

Why does your employer brand matter?

Essentially, you need to make it clear what it is your organisation is providing that makes you different. Define why top talent should work for you. Your employer branding communicates to candidates who you are, and how you do things. 

To do this, you need to define your principles and what the day-to-day looks like in your organisation. Once you have this established, you need to craft a narrative to draw talent in.

So, digital transformation for large organisations is, essentially, inevitable.

All companies need to embrace transformation to stay relevant and avoid falling behind. Where this might seem like a daunting task for large companies, there are measures your organisation can take to ensure that you are attracting the right tech talent.

Utilise an RPO to outsource your tech recruitment needs and refine your narrative to potential employees. In a world where there are endless possibilities, and job roles are abundant, it’s essential to streamline your message so that the right people hear you.

This requires a carefully crafted EVP and innovative recruitment marketing strategy so that the application process is geared towards tech talent right from the beginning. 

To find out more about RPO for digital transformation, you can check out our RPO eBook.

Tech recruitment: 5 reasons why you should utilise RPO

There is a war for talent in the tech field. According to research, 86% of recruiters said they “find it challenging to find and hire technical talent”.

So, why is it so difficult to hire tech talent?

In short, there is a limited pool of candidates. Technical innovations over the last few years have, rather than depleting the need for human labour, increased it. As such, the outlook for work in the tech industry is extremely positive. However, while machines have or will take over “hard, dangerous and dull jobs”, technology has “created more jobs than it has destroyed”.

What does this mean?

There is an increasing number of roles available in the tech industry, many of which the current workforce does not have the skills to fill. This is because the tech industry is developing far more quickly than the workforce has had time to keep up with. So, candidates with the right skill sets for highly-skilled roles are few and far between. As a result, 53% of recruiters “have hired tech talent despite candidates not meeting the job requirements.”

So, fears that technology will make human labour obsolete are clearly unfounded. However, until the next generations of tech-savvy talent enter the workforce, there is likely to be a skills shortage within the tech field.

For your company to continue to innovate effectively and keep up with technological advancements, there are things you can do to attract and retain the tech talent you need. Utilising Recruitment Process Outsourcing to hire your tech talent can have many benefits for your company.

So, we’ve summarised a few of these here.

  1. When working with an RPO which specialises in tech hiring, you can gain from the experience of recruiters who have worked extensively within the tech field. This means that they have a nuanced understanding of the role being hired for and what it requires. So, they already have a pool of highly skilled talent waiting to be contacted. All this experience can significantly reduce your time-to-hire, saving money on advertising and lengthy recruitment processes.
  2. In a candidate shortage, all organisations need to be thinking of ways to increase their retention rates. The good news is, an RPO can help you do just that. An RPO can ensure that your company maintains a positive employer brand throughout the recruitment process, improving the candidate experience. An improved candidate experience improves the “perception of employees about the company”, thereby increasing retention rates.
  3. If you don’t want to outsource all your recruitment processes, but you need to hire more staff for a specific department (such as Tech), you can utilise Project RPO. This provides a solution which is both flexible and scalable to your needs, while giving you access to those experienced tech recruiters. As such, you can utilise an RPO just for your tech hiring needs. This flexibility can save your company money and ensure you fill those tech roles quickly.
  4. RPO providers often have a capacity for research and industry-led insight. This means that your provider can assess the problems with Tech hiring your company is encountering and provide insight-led solutions. For example, a researcher can assess everything from salary and culture to job descriptions and broader problems within the market. This should then give you a realistic idea of the talent available and how to appeal to the right people with suitable marketing techniques and offerings.
  5. Some RPO providers have marketing, creative and digital capacities. This can enable the team working on your behalf to market your roles with the innovation required to attract top talent. Too many companies underestimate the value of a high-quality job advert. RPO providers with creative capacity can utilise the expertise of copywriters and designers. This ensures that your campaign is targeted to the right audience, in terms of both the language and overall design. An RPO’s digital capacity can create an application process which is quick and tech-literate, therefore appealing to tech-savvy applicants.

To get ahead of the game

You need to appeal to applicants from the very start of the process. This begins with talent attraction, refining your employer brand and EVP. So, by the time the applicant gets to interview stage, you don’t have to convince them of your company’s values because they are already aware of them.

Utilising RPO for tech talent can give you access to those insight-led techniques to ensure that your company attracts those highly-skilled applicants who are so in demand.

RPO, after all, is about much more than just recruitment. RPO can give your company the capability to truly define itself as an employer. So, it’s time to ask what your organisation wants to say and how it wants to say it.

To find out more about how RPO can help to solve your tech hiring troubles, download our RPO eBook.

Introducing Ken Kane: Business Development Director

As Talent Works International turns 10 this year, we are welcoming our new Business Development Director, Ken Kane. To introduce him, we thought the best way was to sit down with him and get to know him a little better.

So, read on to hear all about Ken, his vision for Talent Works International and the future of RPO.

So, Ken, where did you start?

What, you mean my whole career?

Yes, your whole career. Or, at least the highlights.

I started in radio advertising. My boss came to me and said I think there is a really good opportunity to sell recruitment advertising on the radio. So, I went around to talk to employers in the North East about recruiting using radio as a medium.

What did the radio ads look like?

You let your imagination run wild.

Later on, in my career, I came across a phrase: organisations that build an emotional connection with their people are the organisations that succeed. It’s about having a sense of purpose, aligning organisational values with the values of the people who work there.

Storytelling is something we’re absolutely wired to respond to, it’s in our DNA. As a kid, I still remember being told stories by my mum and my dad before I went to sleep. Those things stay with you.

What happened then?

I had quite a few years in radio, and then I got opened up to the world of agency, in a bit of a back-to-front way. Nissan was opening up in Newcastle. They needed loads of people. So, I approached an agency about utilising radio in the campaign. They said no. So, I thought, right, I’m going to go to Nissan directly. I managed to secure a significant amount of business. Then, the agency rang me up and said they wanted commission on it. I said absolutely not, and then they ended up hiring me.

So, that’s how I got into the world of agencies, when employer brand was still in its infancy.

So, you’ve seen the development of the concept of employer brand?

Yes. Candidates nowadays behave like B2B consumers and organisations have to respond to that. The power is in the hands of the candidate. So, organisations have to market themselves effectively, building a relationship with candidates and making sure that the employment promise meets the reality.

Many agencies will say that organisations have an employer brand which is distinct from a consumer brand. However, I don’t subscribe to that.

Do you think it’s all one and the same?

I think it always has been. Essentially, a brand is the soul and essence of an organisation. It’s shaped by a number of things including culture, values and behaviours. The promise an organisation makes to a consumer is different from the promise it makes to an employee, but it all comes from the same place.

Traditionally, if you look at the market, the line between the customer and the brand has been considered most important. That’s marketing. However, now, it’s about the customer experience, which is driven by people. So, the line of importance in an organisation is firmly on the relationship between brand and people (employees).

If you get the people bit right, you create engagement, which drives higher levels of discretionary effort. Innovation comes as a natural consequence of that. This then impacts on customer experience and creates greater customer attraction. If customers are spending more, then there’s greater shareholder value.

The latest PWC Chief Executives Report says that the biggest inhibitor to growth is not having the talent in the business to support growth.

This is where Talent Works International comes in.

Why do you think companies are struggling to find the talent they need?

I’m going to use a lot of cliché terms here… there’s a war for talent, and it’s a candidate-driven market. People have got a choice, so companies need to ask why candidates should choose them over somebody else. As a result, everybody’s after the passive candidate.

Many organisations fail to define their purpose and do not engage with their audience on an emotional level.

We’ve got the communications and creative capability to deliver the right message, as well the insight and data expertise to ensure that we land it in front of the right people, in the right place at the right time. Allied to this, our RPO capability is agile and scalable, blending brilliant sourcing with the best candidate experience to solve short and longer-term term recruitment needs. What’s not to like?

How do you feel about joining Talent Works International?

I’ve never been so excited to join an organisation as I am about joining Talent Works International. I went home after my initial chat with Neil, and I said to my wife, “I want to work there.” My intuition was telling me that this business is going in the right direction and that’s something I want to be part of.

What would you say is your passion?

My first boss said to me, “if you hire good people, your job will become much easier.” I’m all about hiring people who are on it. Either, they’re better than me now, or they have the potential to be better than me. My job is to enable them to fulfil their potential.

How do you spot talent?

What I look for is curiosity and a willingness to learn. As well as this, people who are prepared to put the hard yards in.

I think, looking at the generations coming up, we’re not recruiting shrinking violets, are we? We’re looking at people with strong values and opinions, and I think that’s a great thing for the workplace.

How do you want to influence this role?

The market is really ready for what we do. So, I want to be the evangelist who plays a part in the team and then goes out and tells the world about what Talent Works International do. I bring a breadth of experience in recruitment and employer brand, as well as creative and digital media. These are all things that are really relevant in solving the problems that employers face today.

What’s your vision for the future of RPO?

I’d like us to redefine what RPO is, rather than being defined by it. Our solutions are relevant to the demands of the organisations that we’re working for. We do RPO differently.

To find out more, you can contact Ken at