It’s not hard to understand why using multiple agencies seems like an appealing prospect for the savvy hiring manager. After all, in theory, it should mean more CVs, with recruiters covering more ground, and a bit of lively competition meaning that only the very best candidates get through.
In practise, however, it’s a whole different story.
“Stop!” we hear you say – “You would say that – you’re a recruitment agency!” And yes, that’s true – it’s up to us to try to get you to work with us, and us alone, so that we can get your business. But we’ve been around long enough to know that multiple agencies can be prickly, and can really complicate things in the long term.
More CVs will mean I see plenty of relevant candidates…
Not so; rather, it can mean that you’ll be swamped by multiple CVs from each agency, and while more scrupulous recruiters will send you only those that perfectly match the role, you can bet your bottom dollar that those who can’t keep up will send you anything they can find in a last ditch attempt to keep your business.
Or, you’ll find that as you don’t have time to work side-by-side with each of your recruitment partners, they’ll never really understand what it means to work for you – meaning that they’re unable to judge the candidates put forward according to your company’s cultural fit.
Not only that, but you’ll see the same CVs appear repeatedly, while recruiters clamour to get the best candidates in before their competitors.
But I like a bit of lively competition!
Fair enough – but do you also like recruiters battling to get their candidates in first, fighting over “candidate ownership” while you’re just trying to find the right person for the job? This can lead to debates over fees, with candidates told (by bad, bad recruiters) that their competitors are evil, and so on – all of which can massively devalue your employer brand in the long term.
The reason agencies charge fees for their services, in theory, is because you pay a premium to guarantee that you’ll only see the very best candidates. With multiple agencies, however, this isn’t what you’ll get – speed becomes of the essence, so you’re bombarded with CVs from recruiters representing candidates only on the very fringes of suitable.
These recruiters will work on the off chance that one of their competitors may send a certain person who – you never know, on a good day, with the wind in the right direction and a full moon expected – might actually get the job.
Add to this the unfortunate reality that some agencies are so scared of their candidates letting their competitors know who their roles are with, they’ll send CVs to you without ever actually telling the candidate the name of your company, where you are, or even letting them see your lovingly prepared job description that you’ve poured your heart and soul into!
In this age of social media, word-of-mouth is more powerful than ever – so the last thing you need is disgruntled candidates sharing their negative recruitment experience in relation to your company.
But won’t more recruiters mean more ground is covered?
Not necessarily – the higher the quality of your recruitment partner, the more likely it is that they’ll have all the relevant candidate sources covered.
If your recruiter doesn’t understand the importance of social media, then they’re already behind the times – and if they’re not experts in your business, then it’s unlikely they’ll be able to spot the subtle differences between what makes a good candidate – and what makes the perfect candidate for you.
Using multiple agencies fuels the reputation of recruiters as ‘chancers’ who will send anyone in the hope of the all-important fee. Compare that to working with one recruitment partner who can take their time to really sift and understand each applicant – and who will do their utmost to ensure that your shortlist is of the very highest calibre, relevant to your role and right for your company.
You need to be able to trust your agency to work alongside your business, so you can rest assured that you’re getting the highest quality service, the best candidates, and the biggest market reach. If you need multiple agencies to make this happen, then none of your agencies are reaching their full potential – and if that’s the case, it might be time to reassess your approach.
Visit http://www.cactussearch.co.uk to find out how we can make your hiring process less prickly.