A talent agency can streamline your hiring process and bring in higher quality employees, but only if you choose the right firm.
Here are five ways to tell if the staffing agency you’re considering is right for your business:
1. What do they specialize in?
The best staffing agencies have a specialty. This might be placements for a specific type of job, such as IT, or placements within a specific industry, like the automotive industry. Either way, they should be intimately familiar with your niche. This ensures that they know what to look for in new hires.
2. Do they have a good reputation within your industry?
Hiring the right staff is one of the most important aspects of running a successful business. You don’t want to leave it up to amateurs—that’s the entire point of hiring an agency. But not all agencies are created equal. You should thoroughly research any company you’re considering.
Look for reviews on third party websites, reach out to past clients if possible, and ask fellow entrepreneurs in your industry if they’re familiar with the agency. If you can’t actually find anyone familiar with the agency, that’s a sign that you need to look elsewhere.
3. How do they find candidates?
Top quality candidates are rarely found on standard job boards, and the best recruitment agencies know that. They utilize more powerful advertising strategies, appearing at trade shows, employment fairs, and more.
The very best agencies will even reach out to high level candidates who might not even be looking—but who will always be willing to listen to a great offer. And, like everything else, they should be completely transparent about this process, even during the consultation phase.
4. What is their vetting process?
One of the main reasons to work with a staffing agency is that they do all the legwork for you, ensuring that you get only the best employees. This legwork should include a standardized vetting process, and they should be able to clearly explain it to you.
If they can’t explain how they vet potential employees, run the other way.
5. What is their customer service like?
It is absolutely essential that your recruitment firm keeps lines of communication active throughout the entire process. During your initial conversation they should be able to offer a comprehensive list of customer service resources. You should never have issues contacting them, even during the consultation phase.
It’s worth noting that a bigger company doesn’t always mean better customer service. When you work with a massive agency, you’re more likely to be shifted from one rep to another, making it difficult to build strong relationships with the firm. If you’re a small company, they may not be willing or able to give you the time and attention you need to grow.
At this point you might be thinking that hiring an agency sounds like a lot of work, and that it might not even be worthwhile. But going through this process once to find the right staffing firm is much easier than doing each individual hire yourself. Put the work in now and you’ll save yourself a lot of time—and money—later.