What to Look For in Staffing Agencies

Staffing agencies can be a great resource to find workers to help fill positions and contribute positively to the success of your workplace. They’re also becoming increasingly common partners across various industries; it’s believed that by 2020, 40% of the workforce will be made up of contract workers supplied by staffing agencies. Companies also largely benefit from staffing agencies; the American Staffing Association found that 41% of companies that use agencies access more candidates with top talent. Here are some of the things you should look for as you begin seeking an agency that’s the right fit for your business.

Thorough Company Assessment

An agency should thoroughly evaluate the way your company conducts business. Your staffing agency should be intimately familiar with your company so that they are better able to find you candidates who will fit into your work environment, and whose skills and capabilities will be compatible. For some staffing agencies, this will mean visiting your place of business, observing your day-to-day operations, and discussing your future goals. Agencies will also need a thorough understanding of what the job will entail for prospective candidates: What are the physical requirements of the job? What technologies are used on a daily basis?

A staffing agency that understands your unique needs will also be more likely to find you short term workers. If they understand your business, you won’t have to struggle to find individuals on a short-term basis who can fit into your workplace. So be forewarned: if an agency doesn’t take active steps to learn the ins and outs of your business, they might not be the right fit for you.

Depth of Recruitment

The whole point of engaging a staffing agency is that they will be able to reach candidates that you don’t have access to—that, and the fact that you don’t have the time and resources to dedicate to the search. You are, after all, paying staffing agencies a fee for their service, so ask probing questions about how they go about finding potential clients: where and how do they meet contacts? What are their vetting processes like? Your staffing agency should have a depth of recruitment ability that extends far beyond yours.

Familiarity with Your Industry

There are numerous different staffing agencies, and some come with specialized knowledge that can be invaluable to you when it comes to hiring. Look for a staffing agency that has more than just a generalized understanding of the job market within your target industry. The one you choose should have in-depth knowledge of—and seasoned experience hiring within—the industry that aligns with the needs of your hiring process. For example, if you’re looking to hire an IT professional, a staffing agency that has extensive experience and a vast network of contacts within the IT industry will be more likely to find you better quality candidates, and they will also be better able to keep you up to date on the employment trends that are specific to that industry.

Post-Hiring Structure

Some people mistakenly believe that staffing agencies solely connect candidates with companies, but they in fact do far more than that. It’s important to look for an agency that prioritizes what happens after you find staff just as much as they prioritize the process of finding you staff in the first place.

A staffing agency should be an integral part of the hiring ecosystem. They will help with onboarding new employees, making sure they’re prepared for the work environment, and then ensuring they’re settled properly. They’ll also take care of invoicing, billing, and drawing up the appropriate contracts. Essentially, they should make the hiring process as simple as possible for you.

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