As a business grows, bringing in good people while keeping up with business activities becomes increasingly difficult. A staffing company can help. As experts in what they do, staffing agencies make smart, efficient talent acquisitions for their clients without negatively impacting productivity.
When a business has a strong relationship with a dedicated staffing partner, it can reap many benefits. Below is a short list of ten benefits that your company can enjoy with a strong staffing partnership.
1) Improved Productivity
The first big advantage of collaborating with a staffing company is greater efficiency. As vacancies are filled with skilled employees, productivity inevitably rises. When your staffing company helps with onboarding, it also creates greater efficiencies.
2) Lower Turnover
When an experienced employee leaves your company, you have to invest in hiring and training a new person. A staffing partner can help reduce turnover by increasing the average quality of hire.
3) Lower Internal Costs
There are internal costs associated with staffing. Hiring, onboarding and then waiting for a new to get up to date affects the bottom line. A staffing company can allow you to identify qualified matches who are more prone to hit the ground running.
4) Temp-to Hire Option
A temp-to-hire arrangement enables employees to assess prospective full-time staff members before committing to hiring them full time. Many contract employees are open to a temp-to-hire as it affords them flexibility as well.
When your company uses a temp-to-hire approach, you can see how each possible full-time worker fits into the position and the company.
5) Lower Unemployment Claims
When a company hires a worker, it becomes liable for the possible unemployment costs. Hiring contract employees from staffing agencies means the liability is shifted to the staffing company. Temporary employees also enable a company to staff up or down according to business demands.
6) Staffing Expertise
Experienced staffing agencies know your company and your industry. They combine this expertise with proven screening, interviewing and training processes.
7) Greater Flexibility
Your labor requirements can change so rapidly in cases of maternity leave, sick leaves, seasonal shifts or unexpected spikes in business. A staffing company can allow you to flex your staffing as needed to meet unpredicted needs.
8) Access to More Talent
Staffing companies let you cast a much wider net for talent than you would otherwise be able to do. This helps to boost hiring quality and helps your company concentrate more on revenue-generating activities.
9) Faster Hiring
Critical positions left open can have a big negative impact on a business. With its broad and deep pool of talent, a staffing company can fill open positions faster than an internal team.
10) A Greater Focus on Top Candidates
When you opt to have a staffing company screen your applications, you decrease the pile of resumes that must be screen and can put a lot of focus on only the most qualified candidates.
As a staffing agency, you need to have a strong recruitment process in place to differentiate yourself in the competitive staffing market and win contracts.
So, how can you make sure that your process is effective and efficient, especially as recruiting continues to be more remote-based?
According to a survey, 51% of recruiters have recently interviewed candidates remotely, with 42% making a job offer remotely. And even though there are now more candidates available on the job market, companies still have problems finding people with the right skills. With hiring moving remotely and skills shortages approaching, staffing agencies need to rethink the way they hire.
The good news for staffing agencies is, incorporating digital tools like video interviews, pre-employment assessment, and using automation, changes can be made to meet the ever-evolving environment.
We’re sharing 9 best practices staging agencies can use for recruitment—let’s get hiring!
The first step to recruiting the right people is knowing exactly the type of employee your client needs.
Ask your client:
What is the role about?
What are your requirements?
What is your budget?
Asking some simple questions at the start of the recruitment process can shine a light on what your client is looking for. You can then use this information to determine the best recruitment strategy for each role.
It’s important to remember that some clients will have different needs for different roles, which you can help them understand. For example, some roles will require recruiting candidates that have a certain level of specific skills and experience, while others will focus on broad abilities like conversational skills.
To prepare your staffing agency for this, you should create a flexible recruiting process that lets you build in specific client needs, like skill tests, and add in extras like background checks if you need to.
Focusing on what your clients need and finding a tailored solution for them helps you improve your client experience
2. Set a clear timeline
You don’t have to have a day-to-day plan for each stage of the hiring process.
But what you do need to do is be realistic and set a clear timeline and deadline. This is important not only to keep your staffing agency operations organized but also for your clients. Adding a timeline into your process means your client will have a date in mind for when you’ll have a candidate in place, which will give them confidence in your process.
And if there are any delays in that process, make sure to communicate them to your client immediately.
The easiest way to establish a timeline with your client is to figure out when they need the job’s start date to be. Once you have a start date, you can build a recruitment process backward from that day. For example, if a client needs a role filled in 8 weeks, you can use that data to map out a timeline like:
Sourcing and pre-employment tests to happen in 3 weeks
First round of interviews in 4 weeks
Second round of interviews in 5 weeks
Onboarding and training in 6 weeks
Mapping a timeline out will make it easier for your agency to manage your workload and your client’s expectations.
3. Design a virtual recruitment process
As we’ve already highlighted, you won’t always be able to meet the candidates in person.
So, you also need to make sure your recruitment process works in a remote setting. Even if you haven’t used the technology before, now is the time to start exploring remote recruitment tools like video interviewing and digital skills tests to streamline hiring over the internet.
For example, with one-way video interviews, candidates can use the tech to record answers to written or video-based questions in the initial application process, which reduced the need for time-consuming phone screens.
In short, digitizing your recruitment process will help you learn a lot about what a candidate is like before you ever invite them to interview. What virtual interviews also do is broaden your talent pool. As you can attract and interview candidates virtually, you will open up your hiring options to candidates that live abroad.
This same tech can also be used for a bunch of different recruitment techniques, like hosting a virtual job fair to attract even more talent to fill open positions.
Don’t forget that the best part about adding new tech into your recruitment process is the flexibility it gives you. Depending on your client’s needs, you can mix and match tools like virtual interviews and job fairs to attract their ideal candidates.
Successful company owners recognize that their success is due to their greatest assets: products/services and their employees. That’s why it is vital to hire, mentor and retain talented, capable, productive, and reliable staff.
Easier said than done, of course. Company owners have businesses to run. The day-to-day urgency of doing that can make the hiring process – which is time-consuming and not always productive – a ‘back burner’ priority.
That’s when a staffing agency might be the solution.
Rather than trying to do it yourself ‘in-house’, a staffing agency can identify the best candidates for your needs and eliminate candidates who aren’t suitable. Bottom line: a good staffing agency will provide well-vetted individuals who could add great value to your enterprise.
With so many staffing agencies offering their services, how can you be sure that you’re collaborating with the best one? Here are some suggestions to consider:
Have a Clear Definition of What Your Business Needs
When initiating discussions with a potential staffing agency, be as specific as possible about your staffing objectives. Do want to fill a position for the short term? Long-term? Permanently? Or some combination? And if you have any unique requirements, such as federal or state background checks, share that information.
Based on your needs and hiring objectives, you’ll want to make sure that the agency’s hiring focus aligns with the type of hires that you need. This is especially important if you are looking to hire full-time employees because you’ll want to avoid agencies that primarily place short- and long-term contractors.
How Long Has the Staffing Agency Been in Business?
While past results are never guarantees of future outcomes, a proven track record of success is a significant measure of a staffing agency. Ask for details about the agency’s establishment, including background on the founders, and its development. While years in operation is one good indicator of the agency’s viability, it’s not the only one to consider.
Does the Staffing Agency Have Experience in Your Industry?
When evaluating potential staffing agencies, it’s vital that you look for a provider who has to experience staffing in your market segment. That eliminates the need to educate the agency on market conditions and challenges as well as your unique business needs.
While it’s no doubt useful, it’s less important that the staffing agency has a deep understanding of the technical aspects of your company’s products or services and much more important the agency possesses in-depth knowledge of your industry category, your company’s position, current marketplace trends, challenges, and opportunities.
What Categories of Staffing Does the Staffing Agency Offer?
Staffing agencies segment the marketplace into categories. While some agencies may provide staffing services across the entire range of categories, many focus their attention on select segments. Here are the marketplace categories that are frequently used.
Physicians, dentists, nurses, hygienists, medical technicians, therapists, home health aides, custodial care workers, etc.
ENGINEERING, INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY, AND SCIENTIFIC
Consultants, analysts, programmers, designers, installers, and other occupations involving computer sciences or communications technology, etc.
CLERICAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE
Consultants, analysts, programmers, designers, installers, and other occupations involving computer sciences or communications technology, etc.
PROFESSIONAL – MANAGERIAL
Accountants, bookkeepers, attorneys, paralegals, middle and senior managers, advertising and marketing executives, and other non-technical occupations that require higher skill or education levels.
Does the Staffing Agency Have the Talent Your Business Needs?
Make sure the staffing company fully understands your needs and determine whether they can identify appropriate, qualified candidates in a timely manner.
HOW STRONG OR LARGE IS THEIR TALENT POOL OF CANDIDATES?
It’s easy to think that all agencies have the same pool of candidates to draw from but that isn’t the case. The size of the agency, their capacity to handle large numbers of candidates, their marketing, their reputation in the community, the way they treat employees, and how they actively source candidates are all significant factors to the size of their talent pool and what kind of candidates they will draw. High-end agencies will draw high-end candidates for all positions.
WHAT DOES THE STAFFING AGENCY CONSIDER ADEQUATE LONGEVITY?
Not all agencies will see longevity the same and knowing what their goal is will be critical to you finding the right match. The agency you choose should be very clear on your expectations and their goal should be to find you the right candidate the first time with as little turnover in the position as possible.
WHAT’S THEIR TEMP-TO-HIRE RATIO?
If your goal is to hire a long-term candidate to your payroll to stay and grow with your company, that should be the goal of the agency you select as well. While it is difficult to quantify, agencies should have an approximate idea of how often they are successful in making these long-term placements for their clients. This is a reflection of their ability to screen and coach candidates as well as educate them on the position.
How Does the Staffing Agency Source Their Candidates?
Ask about the online tools and platforms that the staffing agency uses – in addition to LinkedIn and Job Boards. Sourcing is the single biggest challenge for any staffing agency. Agencies that are particularly adept at sourcing utilize a variety of tools and platforms. In addition to the obvious, ask what other tools and platforms they use. Here are a number of options that the staffing agency should mention:
SOCIAL PLATFORMS, SUCH AS FACEBOOK, SLIDESHARE, GOOGLE+, TWITTER, AND MEETUP
ONLINE RECRUITING SOURCES, SUCH AS INDEED, MONSTER, ZIPRECRUITER, AND CRAIGSLIST
Successful agencies will have their own job boards that are optimized for maximum traffic and draw candidates to their jobs.
What Screening and Background Checks Does the Staffing Agency Perform?
Pre-employment screening services include background verification, drug screening, skills assessment, and behavioral assessment tools. A thorough background screen verifies important factual information about a prospective employee (i.e. identity, employment history, education credentials). It also helps gain critical information about an applicant’s character and past history that isn’t always apparent in an interview or application. The right agency will be able to conduct pre-employment screening as well as to conduct a background check and drug screen once a position has been offered.
What is the Staffing Agency’s Fee/Rate Structure?
For direct hire positions, agencies typically charge between 15% and 30% of candidates’ first-year compensation. “Compensation” typically means just salary, but be sure to clarify that the agency is not also including a potential bonus or commission structure in their fee calculation. The good news is that is somewhat easy for you to negotiate the fee, as most agencies will be flexible in an attempt to win your business, particularly if you have multiple positions to fill. The pricing for temp-to-hire and temporary positions will vary by agency and position as it fluctuates based on the price of workers’ comp and employer taxes. When comparing the pricing of agencies make sure you are comparing apples to apples and getting what you pay for.
How Does the Staffing Agency Manage Poor Placements?
All agencies will have some turnover in their placements. Find out how that is handled when it happens. Will the agency end the assignment for you or do you have to? Is there someone available to you at all times in the event you need to end an assignment immediately? Depending on the nature of your work, it is important that you can reach someone from the agency at all times.
How Easy is it to Contact the Staffing Agency Specialists?
Selecting a staffing agency is not easy – and a lot depends on your expectations and your ability to meet them. While it’s a professional relationship, don’t overlook the ‘personal’ aspect. You’ll need to trust and rely on the staffing agency to provide you and your business resources for sustained success.
Will the Staffing Agency Make Face-to-Face Visits?
Make sure the staffing firm will visit your location to get a feel for your culture, meet employees and get a first-hand understanding of your business.
How Transparent is the Staffing Agency?
In any business relationship, honesty and transparency are very important. Your staffing agency should never misstate costs, be vague in answering questions or try to rush you into making hiring decisions.
Finally, Shop Around
It’s absolutely vital to perform due diligence research. Selecting the right staffing agency is challenging – there are plenty of them providing great service to their clients. Don’t hesitate to ask a potential staffing agency for references to a few of their clients. The information you could gain from speaking to them will be very valuable in your decision-making process. Among many others, the Better Business Bureau and a local Chamber of Commerce are two sources to consult.
This blog post is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is created between the author and reader of this blog post, and its content should not be relied upon as legal advice. Readers are urged to consult legal counsel when seeking legal advice.
The number of Venezuelan refugees in the world has continued to grow, albeit at a slower pace, potentially because of the restrictions on human mobility imposed by the COVID-19 global pandemic. Since the end of 2019, about 700,000 more Venezuelans have fled the country, reaching a total of 5.3 million people by the end of 2020. If we consider 2015 as the first year of the Venezuelan mass exodus, the magnitude is remarkably similar to the number of Syrian refugees by 2016 (5.5 million), five years after the beginning of the Syrian crisis (see Figure 1).
Yet, despite the remarkable similarity in terms of both magnitude and evolution between these two groups of refugees (Syrians and Venezuelans), there continues to be a massive gap when it comes to funding from the international community to assist the receiving countries.
In the case of Syria, as Figure 2 shows, with updated figures as of year-end 2020, there has been over $20.8 billion of funding (in total) since the beginning of the exodus. In the case of Venezuela, by 2020, the number was only $1.4 billion—a much smaller number despite the similarity in the number of refugees. As another point of comparison, we find that international assistance to the 2.3 million refugees from South Sudan totals $3.2 billion.
These numbers show that the trends we highlighted earlier continue. Based on the figures for 2020, total funding per refugee amounts to $3,150 per Syrian, $1,390 per South Sudanese, and just $265 per Venezuelan. In other words, funding for the Syrian refugees has been over 10 times larger than for Venezuelans, in per capita terms. Even if we generously assume that the U.N. appeal for 2021 is fully met, the total amount of funding for the Venezuelan refugee crisis would reach $3 billion, which translates into less than $600 per person. Even in the best-case scenario, the Venezuelan refugee crisis will remain severely underfunded.
While the Venezuelan refugees and their hosting countries could use a bit more of our sympathy, what they really need is for the world to step up and invest in them, in the hosting communities, and in their inseparable future.
Colombia—which hosts the largest Venezuelan diaspora of nearly 2 million people—stands out among all regional hosts. In February 2021, the Colombian government announced a plan to provide a 10-year renewable regular migratory status to 1.7 million Venezuelans, most of them undocumented, living in the country. This is perhaps the most generous amnesty program to undocumented immigrants in modern history. This was no surprise to those who follow Colombia closely. In the past, it had taken several generous steps to facilitate the integration of Venezuelan immigrants. In 2018, it announced a massive amnesty program to provide a two-year regular migratory status to about half a million undocumented Venezuelans present in the country at the time. In 2019, it provided Colombian citizenship to nearly 30,000 children of Venezuelan refugees who had been born in Colombia without a nationality (unlike the U.S., in many countries just being born within their jurisdictions doesn’t confer citizenship automatically). Colombia has also rolled out several types of short-term visas to Venezuelans that entered the country “legally,” giving them the right to stay and work and access social services. It is unprecedented.
While we are yet to see a unified framework in the region to deal with Venezuelan refugees along the lines of what was suggested by the Organization of American States (OAS), we hope that more countries will follow Colombia’s example. It is not only a matter of humanity but of smart policymaking. Colombia understands that integrating immigrants and refugees into local communities and the labor force will bring tremendous benefits to its economy, as we have argued before.
To achieve this, however, the countries of the region need a massive influx of funding from the international community. This funding is not only required for humanitarian needs, of which there are many, but also for investment in local communities and businesses that require infrastructure upgrades and access to credit to absorb and integrate the immigrants and refugees into the formal labor force. We acknowledge this might be even more difficult to achieve during a global recession, but that doesn’t change the reality. The numbers speak for themselves. And while the Venezuelan refugees and their hosting countries could use a bit more of our sympathy, what they really need is for the world to step up and invest in them, in the hosting communities, and in their inseparable future.
Recruitment agencies don’t just identify and contact candidates for their clients. They aim to provide better career choices for the candidates as well. This win-win spirit is what motivates a recruiter to do their best every day.
Especially with the whole COVID-19 pandemic going on, it’s even more vital to help people and companies fill positions to continue operations and ensure survival and success.
If you are keen on starting your own recruitment business to help more dreams come true for both businesses and candidates, you should know these 8 key steps.
Step 1. Determine Your Niche
To start with, you need to determine which type of recruitment agency you want to establish. You could be an IT-focused agency or a retail business-oriented staffing team. Just examine the network you have and the knowledge you excel at, and choose a market to provide your service. Also, consider which candidates you have the strongest connection with. Are they fresh graduates or are they seniors? Asking yourself these questions will help you better position your business.
This type of agency is also called an “employment agency” and the most common one of all. How they work is fairly straightforward. They only scout for candidates whenever their client needs a certain position filled.
They usually place individuals for long-term positions, which usually range from entry to high-level roles. Once a candidate is successfully onboarded, they charge a flat fee or a percentage of the candidate’s salary.
However, it’s important to note that when someone drops out within an agreed amount of time (usually 3 months), the recruitment agency has to find a replacement or waive the fee paid.
If you’re planning to put up your recruitment agency, be sure to screen candidates properly by offering a lot of support throughout their application journey.
2. Headhunting Agency
A headhunting agency is also called “executive search firms”. These companies only source high-level executives for companies like Chief Technology Officer (CTO), General Manager (GM), Director of Marketing, and so forth.
They will usually work on a retainer basis or with a percentage of the candidate’s salary or a mix of both. The retainment fee is to, as the name suggests, “retain” a recruiter to continuously headhunt the needed position and is non-refundable.
This type of recruitment is very time-consuming but undeniably effective. A lot of people rely on headhunting agencies to find high-level executives because they have professionally-trained recruiters who will relentlessly find the best fit for your organization.
If you’re planning on starting one, a team of experienced recruiters is a must.
3. Staffing Agency
A staffing agency is also called a “manpower agency”. This type of agency matches the ideal candidate with the right position, similar to traditional recruitment agencies. However, the main differences are the positions they fill and the recruitment process.
First, a staffing agency only fills temporary or contractual positions. These are often from select industries (i.e. hospitality) where they only do contracts and not long-term positions.
Second, the staffing agency hires the people themselves and not the client. This means that they have to do all the interviewing, screening, and training.
It’s an all-around company that gives convenience to clients who don’t have the time to source short-term employees and deal with the employment terms.
It offers a wide range of opportunities including temporary, temp-to-hire, contract, and direct hire. Staffing agencies charge a mark-up depending on the hired employee’s wage.
4. Niche Recruiting Agency
This one is also called a “specialist recruitment agency”. They understand the talent gaps in the market and help fill positions faster by providing candidates best suited for specialty roles.
What do we mean by this? They only work with a chosen industry. Let’s say, IT. The focus on IT positions and throughout the years develop accrued knowledge and experience to deal with individuals of such caliber.
This enables them to know what skills a good IT worker should have, what kind of packages and compensations they want, and many more. This gives them the advantage to find highly qualified applicants who are true experts in their fields.
Starting a niche recruitment agency might limit your clients, but once you find your momentum, you’ll be revered in the field you’ve chosen.
Step 2. Assess Your Competitors
Once you decide on a market and the type of recruitment agency you want to have, you should assess who you are competing with. Use simple SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) and 4 Ps (product, place, price, promotion) analysis to find out how you stand out and where you need to improve your game. As one ancient Chinese saying states, “know the enemy, know yourself, and in every battle, you’ll never be in peril.”
Step 3. Assess Your Finances
Starting a recruitment agency doesn’t require as much money as most other startups. However, you should still consider costs like office equipment, digital tools, staff, insurance, etc. Create a budget spreadsheet and get proper financial advice if needed.
Don’t hesitate to seek help or even partnerships with other people. Having someone to back you up can lead to a more efficient and productive workforce, especially when you’re just starting.
Step 4. Research Laws and Regulations
Most companies depend on lawyers and counsel to take care of legal business. Yet, as the founder of your agency, you ought to spend time researching relevant laws and regulations to prevent any further legal problems. The latest regulation recruitment agencies need to follow is GDPR, which focuses on data protection.
This is important so you can protect and prevent your company and your candidates from any legal issues that may arise.
Step 5. Build Marketing Plans
First, create a logo and image that meet your agency’s style. First impressions matter much more than you notice. Once you set up the look, draft a marketing structure and match each process with tools and skills you can use. For instance, there are various graphic design tools for creating images. As for reaching out to clients and candidates, LinkedIn is a must. Pick the right channels to connect and you’ll have won half the battle.
While you’re on this, ensure that you take into consideration company diversity, equity, and inclusion, showcasing your website, career pages, and more can highly improve your employer branding and perpetuate a company culture that people would want to work in. You’ll be surprised at the number of quality candidates that will attract!
Step 6. Set Up Business Goals
Want to go big? Objectivity is the key. A successful staffing agency counts on not only experiences and a massive amount of candidates but also clear business goals. Adopt a comprehensive yet flexible business model for your agency. Set up short and long-term goals to inspire your recruiters. For example, you could aim to increase stable clients by 10% in 2 months. Maybe you’d like to expand your service area during the next half year.
Creating such metrics or KPIs can help you track progress and let you pinpoint bottlenecks to achieve more. After all, numbers and figures are essential to businesses!
Step 7. Invest in Tech Tools
Recruitment agencies nowadays are enormously affected by technological tools. Invest in the right tool, you will end up saving a great deal of time and money. One of the most popular and reliable digital software used by recruiters is Applicant Tracking System. Use one that can automatically collect candidates’ LinkedIn profiles, score out the best candidate, and easily track candidates’ status. You’ll see how much faster and simpler it is to manage your talented applicants and keep your work organized.
Furthermore, some advanced ATS also have dual functionalities which encompass a reliable recruitment CRM. This way, you’ll also get to touch base with clients so you can have more sales for overall company success.
Step 8. Invest in People
Last but not least, you need to hire good recruiters and invest in them. Knowing tips on recruiting a recruiter definitely allows you to meet and hire recruiters with rich experience. However, don’t give up on junior recruiters. Spot each recruiter’s strength and help them thrive, you are doing a huge favor to yourself too.
With the right people on board, it will tie together your entire recruitment system and you’ll reap rewards faster than you know it.
Picture this. You get called in for a job interview after applying for a position through one of those huge job boards like CareerBuilder. You show up to your interview dressed to impress with your resume in your hand and your go-to interview answers memorized. Then you find out that you’ve actually had an interview at an employment agency, which means that you’d have to pay them a percentage of your salary if you land a job as a result of working with them. But the very thought makes you cringe! This happened to me a couple of times right after I graduated from college, and I too had the same reaction. Then, by some sort of strange twist of fate, I ended up working at one of those employment agencies, and I was able to see how they work from the inside. Now that I know what is involved in agency work and given the current economic climate, I think a lot of people might actually be better off using one.
The first thing on everyone’s mind
Before I list the benefits of using an employment agency, I’m going to address the issue that makes everyone uncomfortable: the commission fee. Look, in placing you in a job, coaching you and essentially acting like your agent, employment agencies have offered you a very valuable service. Agency employees have to make a living too, so you can’t expect them not to charge some sort of fee. Acceptable fees and practices vary by state. For instance, employment agencies in New York have fee restrictions based on percentages of the first year’s salary. The regulations in Arizona are different. If you have any doubts or questions, make sure to check what kind of provisions have been set forth by your state’s Department of Labor for both public and private employment agencies. Here’s something else you need to know: there are instances when the company with the open position will cover the agency cost. You see, employment agencies aren’t just for individuals, they have whole companies as clients who will pay for their services. So there is a chance you won’t have to pay anything at all. If that doesn’t work out, there is also the chance that the employer will at least pay part of the fee. The bottom line is that you are entitled to explore your options. If you want the employer to pay the fee, tell the recruiter. Agencies will often partake in negotiations to make all parties involved happy. Now that the controversial stuff is out of the way, here are some of the benefits of using an employment agency:
Companies actually use them
Ever wonder why you can’t find those great jobs you hear about on huge job boards? It’s probably because they are using the services of an employment agency. Nowadays, more and more companies are turning to employment agencies to do initial screenings and interviews, that way they don’t have to sift through countless resumes and interview hundreds of people before they find the right fit. In fact, an April 2011 Staffing Industry Report finds that industry revenue went up 12 percent in 2010. It forecasts that professional staffing revenue will hit $50.6 billion by 2012. What does this mean for you? It means that these agencies actually have clients that could be your next employer.
They have a stake in your success
It’s in an employment agency’s best interest to coach you well for a potential job. Basically, if you look bad, then they look bad. As a result, employment agencies prep you for interviews so that you impress your potential employer. In other words, you’ll never go into an interview blind. These agencies also rework your resumes to fit the jobs you are applying for, a much-appreciated service since many people still don’t know how to write a good resume.
Employment agencies essentially take on the role of your agent. If you have a problem with your placement, need to negotiate benefits, salary, or commissions, or just have general questions, employment agencies will work with you and for you. Again, it’s in their best interest to make sure that both the employee and the employer are satisfied. While employment agencies may not be for everyone, they are a viable option for finding anything from temporary work to permanent employment.
When applying for a job in a competitive hiring environment, it’s important to have every possible advantage, or a hiring manager may never even see your resume. The right education and training, relevant experience and industry certifications are all important. But it sometimes takes much more to land an interview, and ultimately, the job.
More job seekers are using job recruitment agencies to help them navigate the hiring process. Not only does a good agency find you more opportunities with hiring managers, but it can also be a valuable long-term career partner. If you’re considering a recruitment agency, follow these tips to determine whether it’s a good or bad one.
TIPS ON CHOOSING A GOOD RECRUITMENT AGENCY
Many professionals limit their recruitment agency search to those advertising positions of interest. While this isn’t necessarily a mistake – after all, you could get lucky and end up with a great agency – it’s not the best approach.
It’s more important to proceed thoughtfully, and choose a recruitment agency that’s a good fit for you and the career opportunities you seek.
When researching recruitment agencies, you’ll find they have commonalities and differences. The key is to know the good qualities you want and the bad qualities you want to avoid.
QUALITIES TO LOOK FOR IN A RECRUITMENT AGENCY:
Approachability: Look for agencies that are personable and approachable. They should seem genuinely interested in learning about you as a person, as well as your career goals.
Sales ability: You’ll need your agency to go to bat for you. Therefore, you should look for one with strong sales skills that will accurately represent you to employers, persuade them that you are the right candidate and convince them you deserve an opportunity.
Optimism: It’s not easy looking for a job; you’ll want to team up with a recruitment agency partner that makes it easier for you by being positive and motivating.
Industry expertise: Good agencies understand your industry, the roles they are recruiting for and the needs of employers. They have cultivated strong relationships in either their specialty industry or a variety of areas.
Longevity and turnover: Find out how established the agency is and how long the recruiter you’ll be working with has been there. If they have a high turnover rate, your consultant may not have developed long-term, established relationships with employers. For you, that could mean the difference between getting an interview and being ignored.
Resume help: Good recruitment agencies are experts in resumes and cover letters. They know exactly what employers are looking for. The agency should be able to help you put together a resume and cover letter that stands out and speaks directly to an employer’s needs.
QUALITIES TO AVOID IN A RECRUITMENT AGENCY:
Fees: If the recruitment agency charges you a fee for their services, consider it a huge red flag. Legitimate agencies are paid by the company doing the hiring – not by the candidates they place. Avoid signing any contracts that require you to ever pay a fee, even if they find you a job.
Lack of interest: Some agencies don’t interview individual candidates in person. Or, they may push you toward jobs that are not suitable for you, but pay larger fees to them. Be sure your recruitment consultant always has your best interests at heart.
Overpromising: Keep your guard up when a recruitment consultant promises the moon, such as indicating they can guarantee you a job. Remember that all hiring decisions are made by the employer, not the recruitment agency.
Lack of privacy: Beware of recruitment agencies they send your personal information to employers without your consent. They should always respect your privacy and be completely transparent about where they send your information.
Look for agencies with good reputations that are focused on their candidates and interested in long-term relationships. Avoid agencies that are more interested in making a quick buck, and end contact with candidates once they’ve been placed in a position.
When interviewing with an agency, ask plenty of questions that will help you learn whether they have the qualities you seek or those you wish to avoid. Find which industries they specialize in, if any, what makes them different from the competition and what types of clients they typically work with.
CHOOSE THE RIGHT RECRUITMENT AGENCY AND LAND THE RIGHT JOB
As stated above, no recruitment agency can guarantee you a job. However, choosing the agency that fits you and your career goals is the first step to landing the position you want. Knowing you’re represented by an agency you’re proud of and that can open additional doors will give you a greater feeling of confidence – an advantage you’ll need when you’re job hunting!
The fashion industry is ruthless. It’s a dog eat dog world out there with trends rapidly coming and going from season to season. As a fashion marketing expert, you need to be well prepared and ahead of the game in terms of your branding and marketing if you want to stand any chance of survival. This goes for the already established brands, as well as any emerging start-ups. Just because you might have built up a bit of a name for your fashion brand doesn’t mean that the hard work is over. In fact, every campaign you launch going forward will be watched and scrutinised even more closely, so you can never take your eyes off the prize if you want to be and remain successful.
It’s an exciting industry and one that comes with many challenges due to its high level of competitiveness. One of the best ways to compete in this fast-paced industry is with a great fashion marketing campaign.
Throughout this guide, we’re going to cover some of the top building blocks that make up a successful, high-performing fashion marketing campaign.
9 ways to build the perfect fashion marketing campaign
First things first, you need a website and a pretty good one at that! E-commerce in the fashion industry is huge. In fact, with a global market value of $759.5 billion in 2021, clothing, accessories, and footwear are the number one e-commerce sector in the world. And this figure is expected to grow to +$1.0 trillion by 2025!
While sales in bricks-and-mortar fashion stores were already declining before 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic sped this up even further due to the lockdowns that forced stores to remain shut for many months. Online fashion retailers such as Zalando and Boohoo soared during this time, with Boohoo claiming a 45% increase in revenue across all of its fashion brands during the second quarter of 2020.
The opening up of a physical store is an option, however, choosing whether or not to have a website for your fashion brand should not be. Leading consumers back to your website will be the goal of all of your digital marketing efforts. So having a great website that looks amazing, is easy to navigate, up-to-date, well-branded and functional is the key starting point to your fashion marketing campaigns. 2) Great visuals and branding
Having great visuals is necessary for most businesses when it comes to selling their products and services online. However, for clothing, it is especially important if you want your customers to get a good idea of how they might look in your product. Paying for a studio, models, hair, make-up and a professional photographer might seem like a stretch for a new brand on a limited budget, but if the outcome is increased sales and fewer returns then the expense will certainly pay off.
It’s also beneficial to have a clear idea of your brand image in terms of the colours, lighting, tones, models, backdrops used for photography, etc. Keeping everything consistent and on-brand from the get-go will make you look more established and professional. Plus, it will enhance the aesthetic of your website and social media pages too.
3) Mobile presence
With 3.5 billion smartphone users worldwide and the average time being spent daily on our mobile devices rising to 3 hours and 43 minutes a day, having an app or at least a well-optimised mobile website is a must-have part of your fashion marketing campaigns. A mobile-optimised website resizes content accordingly based on the screen from which it is being viewed. Without this functionality, it’s likely that any potential customer that lands on your site whilst browsing on their mobile device would immediately be put off and go in search of a competitor instead.
Consumers are spending a large portion of their day on their mobile devices, and often it’s as part of their downtime, so in other words, the perfect moment to tempt them into a sale. Gone are the days of having to load up your computer to browse the internet on the desktop. Mobile browsing now makes up 56% of the market share for internet usage. It’s the ideal platform for having a direct line of communication with your customers, whether that’s through push notifications, SMS marketing or email marketing.
Your marketing efforts are going to send prospective customers to your website or mobile app, so you want to make sure that they are well-optimised, functional and provide a great user experience if you want their visit to result in a sale. 4) Social media
As a fashion brand, having a strong social media presence is a must. These platforms are completely free to sign up to and enable you to build up a following, connect with your audience and enhance your relationship with them.
The most popular social channels for fashion brands right now are Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, Snapchat and Pinterest. Whilst they all have their own unique elements and pros and cons, they are all very heavily focused on imagery and video content. This is your opportunity to get your creative juices flowing and create content that showcases your products in the best possible light. Some of these platforms even allow you to integrate your store so that your customers can browse and purchase items directly from your social media channels.
Giveaways and competitions also work incredibly well on social media. With a decent prize up for grabs, you could get thousands of likes and shares and boost your brand awareness before you’ve even spent a penny on ads.
Using social media, you can help communicate the human side of your brand through things such as live Q&As with the founders and behind-the-scenes footage of product designs, photoshoots, catwalks, etc. Consumers love to see this sort of content, and this is what will help you stand out from your competitors and build trust and loyalty with your audience. It helps to be constantly engaging with your audience through social media also. Reply to comments and respond quickly to any questions as this will help build your brand’s sense of community.
Following on from social media, if you want to see the most success for your social media campaigns then it always pays off to get some influencers on board. If you’re unfamiliar with the term “influencer”, then first of all, where have you been?! But to answer your question, influencers are people within your industry who have a large following on social media and are genuinely good at influencing their followers, hence the term. When they speak, others listen. What they do, others copy. So getting them to speak about and wear your brand is a great way to pique the interest of your target audience, grow your following and ultimately sell your clothing.
It’s important to choose the right influencers for your brand, so be sure to do your homework and make sure that the demographics of their following matches your target audience. Go for the ones that are picky about which brands they chose to advocate for, as they will come across much more genuine than the ones who are simply in it for the money and have ‘AD’ slapped across each and every post on their account.
A key part of your fashion marketing campaign needs to be your emails. And when I say emails, I don’t just mean the occasional promotional email that gets sent out to your entire database. Your email marketing should have a strategy of its own and requires extensive thought and planning if you want to get it right.
Make use of email automation tools, such as Mailchimp or Hubspot, to automate when your emails are sent and to who. Personalisation is key here. Any email received by contacts that exist in your database should be tailored based on their stage in the customer journey as well as catering towards their likes and dislikes. Segment your audience based on their behaviour on your website or mobile app and send them content based on this. For example, if you stock items for men, women and children, and you notice a contact browsing on the children’s pages frequently, then it’s highly likely that they are a parent or guardian, so create email content specific to that in an attempt to capture their attention.
Here are a few more examples of specific email marketing campaigns that you need to have set up for your fashion brand:
Content emails i.e. founder’s story, behind the scenes, a fashion blogger article, etc.
Personalised product recommendations
Abandoned cart emails
Back in stock emails
Post-purchase emails (opportunity to cross-sell, gain referrals, customer reviews, etc.)
Holiday/special events emails
Running a consistent and high-quality fashion blog alongside your website can be great for helping build your website’s SEO and increasing the organic traffic you receive. Having a blog helps establish you as a thought leader in your industry, and will hopefully lead consumers who search for phrases in Google such as “summer trends 2021” onto your site (provided you have optimised well for the chosen keyword).
A great blog is another way of building up brand loyalty and connecting with your audience. You want your website to act as a one-stop shop for your industry. Providing an outlet for your customers to purchase the latest trends is helpful, but you can give your brand an edge by supplying additional useful and informative content when it comes to styling your products.
Take some inspiration from these three great examples:
Digital ads are a crucial part of any fashion marketing campaign. Through the use of Google ads and ads via social media channels such as Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, you can effectively target your desired audience through keywords and by setting certain criteria based on demographics and behaviour. This ensures that your consumers only see the most relevant products for them.
Across Facebook and Instagram these types of ads work quite effectively for fashion brands:
Carousel ads allow you to display up to 10 images or videos that are part of one advertisement. Each image links off to the product highlighted allowing brands to showcase many items in an attempt to capture the attention of their target audience. You could think of these as mini style guides.
A collection ad includes a cover image or video followed by 4 product images. Once clicked upon, the user gets an instant experience which is a full-screen landing page designed to drive engagement and nurture interest and intent further than the regular sponsored ad.
Another powerful feature of digital advertising that needs to be utilised is remarketing. Remarketing allows you to capture the visitors who have recently paid a visit to your site but perhaps left again without making a purchase. The beauty of remarketing is that you know that this audience has already shown interest in your brand, so your conversion rates for these ads should be higher than a normal ad. Use the likes of carousel remarketing ads to remind consumers of the products they viewed while on your site, or even products that they added to their cart before choosing to abandon it. Providing them with a discount code or free delivery could be all they need for that extra little nudge to return and complete the checkout process.
If a consumer has just come across your brand for the very first time they could be hesitant to purchase unless they can find some real-life reviews from other customers. Give your audience the confidence they need by having customer feedback easily accessible on your website.
Fashion e-commerce royalty ASOS include reviews based on each individual item on the product page itself. This sort of information, based on quality and sizing, is very helpful for customers and will help prevent a high volume of returns for your business too.
Include some content asking for a review into your post-sale marketing messaging, whether that’s in the form of an email or push notification. Perhaps even offer a discount on their next purchase for their time too. If you don’t ask, you generally don’t get. A great review also makes for some ready-made social media content!
The options for how you can stand out and be creative when launching a brand new fashion marketing campaign are endless. By implementing the 9 elements we touched upon throughout this blog, you’ll be well on your way to capturing the attention of your target audience, improving your ROI and making your mark on the fashion world.
Choosing the right staffing agency to work with can be a time-consuming task and you don’t want to waste time and money working with an agency that does not meet your staffing needs or expectations.
As an engineering and IT staffing agency with years of experience, we know the things you should evaluate and look out for.
Hopefully, these tips and information will help you when making your final choice for establishing a staffing agency partner.
Evaluate your staffing needs
Before engaging with a staffing agency to start a search, make sure you know exactly what your hiring needs are. Will you need someone to work on a short contract, contract-to-hire, or are you wanting to hire someone on a direct-hire basis?
What is your budget? Hiring someone directly on a full-time basis through an agency usually costs a lump sum fixed percentage fee based on the first year’s salary.
Many employers don’t realize the benefits of a contract-to-hire where you pay as you go with the ability to end the contract at any time if something is not working out.
By using a temp agency to hire on a contract-to-hire basis you have more time to evaluate the candidate over a period of months and they have time to make sure the company is a long term fit for them as well.
Do your research on potential staffing agencies
When evaluating a staffing company, you want to find one that has a deep understanding of your industry and niche while having a strategic approach to engaging quality candidates.
An accounting staffing agency will not have access to the best engineering talent and nor will an engineering staffing agency have an extensive database of the best accountants on the employment market.
Evaluate the cost of services and contracts
While costs are important in any business, choosing an agency simply because they are the cheapest can be a big mistake and cost you more in the long run.
Be wary of anyone in the staffing industry that is offering terms that seem too good to be true and are way outside the norm as there is a good chance they are cutting corners when searching for temporary employees which could result in you receiving bad candidates that have not been fully screened.
If you are using a temp staffing agency for temp/contract or contract-to-hire services make sure and get a copy of their “certificate of insurance” also known as the COI.
Also, watch out for temp-to-perm contracts that tack on extra fees after the contract is over with. If you are hiring on a contract-to-hire basis, find an agency that offers a no conversion fee after the contract length is completed.
Understanding the agency’s recruitment process
What is the staffing firm’s selection process for finding, engaging, and attracting candidates to your openings?
What recruiting tools and resources are at their disposal? How many years have they spent networking and building their candidate talent pool?
What type of positions have they been working on lately?
What is their track record?
How does the staffing agency source its talent?
Recruiting is more than just posting a position on a job board and filtering through the candidates that apply.
Job boards are just one tool among many in a recruiters tool belt, the best recruiters are also on networking sites, attending business events, participating in user groups, gathering referrals and have access to candidates that never apply to job boards.
Top staffing services spend years developing their own internal database of candidates to help employers find talent quickly and efficiently.
They understand where to find and engage the best talent whether it’s using the latest AI recruiting software or using social media for recruitment.
How does the staffing agency screen candidates?
Can you trust the resumes you’re getting?
Does the staffing partner screen the candidate thoroughly, checking references from the last 2-3 managers, verifying dates of employment, eligibility for rehire, skill set, workplace attitude, interpersonal skills, company culture and general knowledge of the position.
You may want to ask these questions to avoid staffing agencies that do limited screening or none at all by just pointing and clicking “send resume”, partner with an agency that values the service they provide and the candidates they present to you.
How long does it take to present qualified candidates?
This is a question to ask and get an idea of when you should start seeing candidates in your inbox.
Be aware that most of the time it is going to depend on the type of career opening, for example if you’re searching for an IT help desk associate that should most likely require less time to find than a high-level software engineer.
It is important to set a time table to make sure that you receive a candidate in the time frame you need. Depending on the position it could take just a few hours, days, or perhaps weeks.
Do you work with one point of contact?
Ideally, you want to work with a staffing agency that will provide you with one point of contact from start to finish.
Working with a full desk experienced recruiter is usually the best option as they are not only speaking with you but engaging and recruiting candidates directly on your behalf making sure nothing gets lost in translation.
Seek an agency that treats candidates with respect
The staffing agency works as an extension of your human resources department.
The agency is representing you by presenting your opportunity to prospective candidates. It’s important that both parties have a similar alignment of values to ensure successful candidate placement and longevity.
Work with an agency that values your business
Find an agency that looks out for your long term interests, this applies when they are supplying short term contract employees as well as working on permanent positions. Often times people you hire on as temps turn into great long term employees.
Working with an agency that’s too big and you run the risk of being overlooked when you truly need talent quickly, though quality staffing agencies come in all sizes you want to find the one that gives you the attention you deserve.
In closing, find a great staffing agency that will strive to provide you with the best candidates possible with the long term goal of forming a mutually beneficial partnership.
Tired of the endless stream of unqualified resumes filling your inbox? Reach out to the recruiting team, contact us for more information.
Barbados will modernize its regulatory framework and strengthen its public policies oriented towards sustainable development and climate resilience with the support of a US$80 million loan from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).
The program, the first in a series of policy-based loans, provides budget support tied to the strengthening and consolidation of public policies focused on improving territorial planning efficiency and sustainability. Its comprehensive approach includes modernizing policies for managing water resources, natural assets, and disaster risk and resilience.
The country’s legislation governing physical planning and development is being modernized. In particular, It will focus on the modernization of integrated coastal zone management policies and include the recent update of Barbados’ returnable containers legislation to promote recycling of a broader set of packaging materials and to reduce pollution of land and coastal resources.
Lastly, the project will support reforms needed to strengthen disaster risk resilience and management. Among other activities, the operation will help adopt a cross-cutting and multiyear approach at each phase of the disaster risk management cycle and will mainstream the use of the newly developed National Coastal Risk Information and Planning Platform (NCRIPP). All these steps are in line with the government’s new Roofs to Reefs Program.
The IDB’s US$80 million loans is for a 20-year term, with a 5-1/2-year grace period and a LIBOR-based interest rate.
About the IDB
The Inter-American Development Bank is devoted to improving lives. Established in 1959, the IDB is a leading source of long-term financing for economic, social, and institutional development in Latin America and the Caribbean. The IDB also conducts cutting-edge research and provides policy advice, technical assistance, and training to public and private sector clients throughout the region.