No matter how well run your HR team and internal recruitment processes, there is always a little wiggle room for improvement. Obviously we’re biased (!) but recruitment agencies really can add value at every stage of the sourcing and application process.
Of course it depends who you work with, but the best agencies are invisible. Not only should they send you high numbers of relevant candidates, they should also blend into your team so perfectly you barely notice they’re there and wouldn’t know how you’d manage without them. Whether they’re based at a client’s office or working remotely, good account managers should function like a well-informed, high-performing, very enthusiastic internal employee.Put simply: if we’re not adding value to our client’s sourcing process on a daily basis, we’re not doing our job.
So, how do good recruitment agencies add value?
1. They reach brand new candidates, so you’re not messaging the same ones over and over
Ever feel like groundhog day? The well-publicised shortage of tech talent has made all of our lives more difficult, but it doesn’t mean they need to be repetitive! It is harder and harder to reach new candidates, and even harder to engage them. But it can be done 🙂
Good recruitment agencies have large networks of candidates they nurture and keep warm, so they’re ready to move when the perfect job pops up. But they also know how to uncover new talent pools, so you don’t sit in the same stale water for months on end. The perfect developers exist! You just need to know how and where to find them.
2. They send eye-catching messages candidates actually respond to
You need to reach new tech talent, but you also need to craft messages that grab their attention and inspire them to respond. Good developers receive up to 20 emails, calls and messages a day! That’s a lot of content to sift through. Recruitment agencies work hard to make sure your messages stand out.
There’s a very thin, wobbly tightrope recruitment agencies need to balance: maintaining your employer brand and boosting candidates’ experience of your company in the market, while employing strategies and tactics they know will engage candidates. It’s a tough challenge, but the right agencies know how to engage new developers without being pushy or invasive.
3. They only send you relevant, interesting candidates
Time-poor, overstretched internal HR teams don’t always have the resources to look through the CVs, social media and online profiles of hundreds of candidates. That’s why automated, AI-enhanced CV screening tools exist. But (for now!) they can’t replace a recruitment team.
Experienced recruiters can filter profiles for technical skills, experience and culture fit in less than 30 seconds, and they can spot small inconsistencies or keywords a screening tool might miss.
We have a two-step screening process to makes sure candidates are interested in the role and interesting for our clients. If our sourcing team spot a good candidate profile, they ask for a CV (and portfolio, if relevant), then book them in for an hour-long call with the Account Manager. It’s hard to assess soft skills and culture fit without a proper interview, which is why we added the second step to our sourcing process. As a result, we do all the hard work and only submit candidates to our clients at the skinny end of the recruitment funnel.
Download our e-book to discover all of our sourcing tips and tricks.
4. They’re objective and external
I know, I know. I just said that agencies should fit into the internal HR team as snuggly as if they were an internal employee. External agencies should function as if they were internal, but one of their greatest strengths is that they can provide an objective viewpoint.
They’re free from internal political struggles, existing biases (such as prioritising male applicants or excluding candidates with a consultancy background) and can give third-party insights into the recruitment market, tech competition and developer profiles.
5. If they’re really really good, they can replace the internal recruitment function
In a rapidly scaling tech startup, the last thing on a CEO’s mind is hiring a full-time recruitment team. When building an army of new developers becomes too much for an HR manager or CTO, it can be easier, quicker and more efficient to look outwards. Good recruitment agencies achieve complete alignment with the existing HR team, so can be trusted to find and hire the right developers on the company’s behalf.