Time to take recruitment in-house?

reduce costs by taking recruitment internalIf your business meets the following criteria, then this article’s for you:

You have 150+ employees

You hire at least 10 times a year

You often recruit the same type of role

You spend $200,000/year on external recruitment

At some point in your business lifecycle, you'll most likely be challenged from above to bring some or all of your recruitment in-house. Luckily, there are four simple and not necessarily costly methods to make your business independently sustainable from a recruitment perspective.

Advertise broadly

Firstly, people need to know about your business, what you do and what’s in it for them as an employee: what benefits do you offer?  Do you offer flexible working arrangements, compressed four day weeks?  Will you invest in their development, or are you simply close to home? This information should be clearly presented in a careers section on your website.

Use a broad spectrum of social media channels to advertise your roles, your benefits and even test the water to see if what you offer is in demand. Ask your audiences what they think about your benefits…they’ll tell you what they want and how you compare to similar organisations.  It all helps to target your benefit offering and raise awareness of your brand.  

The following media are cost effective and now considered the benchmark for recruitment advertising:

Seek, Jora, Linkedin and Facebook 

Glass Door

Job Advisor

Industry-specific job boards

University and TAFE job boards

Career fairs and industry forums

Be proactive! Start talking about your brand, future roles and your intention to hire, long before you need the candidate. If you’re a health or retail organisation, for instance, you know which common roles you’re going to need in future (nurse, or retail assistant). Advertise three to four months before you post your job advertisement.

Make the most of every applicant

Use your IT recruitment platform to manage applications – and not just the applicants you are screening now.  No, you need to identify which applicants have which skills, where they wish to work and how much experience they have - for the future. The applicant from last year could be the ideal candidate for your next role.  

Imagine you’re the applicant but were unsuccessful.   When you see the same company advertise six months later, for the same role, you’re unlikely to apply – you may be a little put out from the last process, and assume you wouldn’t have a chance now if you weren’t successful then.

Manage your talent pool carefully, as you may only have one chance  to connect with an individual applicant.  While they may not suit the role you’re recruiting now, they may be appropriate for other roles you’re sourcing. One of the country’s largest retailers calculated that they hired approximately 50% of their new recruits from their existing talent pool. It’s also worth taking into account the savings you’ll yield by using fewer Seek advertisements, and the reduced labour posting, managing and responding to applicants.

Hire a recruitment administrator 

Why do we ask our Hiring Managers to post job advertisements, manage the applicant tracking and coordinate diaries? Truth be told, it’s not the best use of their time. The infrequent nature of using recruitment systems, time-consuming administration, and distraction with other priorities, make for a poor coupling of tasks. 

Hire a recruitment administrator to focus on the unskilled aspects of your recruitment. This will result in a more efficient and accurate way of supporting the recruitment process.  Hiring managers should focus on using their role knowledge to shortlist, interview and select the right candidate. Additionally, by reducing their time input (which is far more costly than the expense of a recruitment administrator), your hiring managers will be able to spend more time performing their day job, lifting business productivity. They will also thank you for removing the burden of recruitment administration.  At the very least this is a cost neutral exercise.  

Train your Hiring Managers  

It’s not their core purpose and often hiring managers haven’t received formal training to shortlist, screen and interview (particularly the latter). From a risk perspective, hiring managers should at the very least be trained to avoid liable comments relating to race, religion and equality. At the other end of the scale, effective interviewing and in some cases just being aware of the interview questions and other materials provided by HR could be a quick way to achieve better recruitment outcomes for your business.  

So where to from here? 

Consider your external recruitment agency expenditure. If it exceeds the cost of an experienced internal recruiter and their various on-costs, then bringing this function in-house is worthy of consideration.  If your business requires a variety of highly skilled, hard to find roles limiting your ability to gain efficiency of process, then relying on external service providers is likely to be your best bet.

If you haven’t done so recently, review your business and the recommendations provided in this article. The industry benchmark keeps creeping forward and innovative HR leaders are not standing still. The last two years have seen a huge increase in the sophistication and focus of talent attraction, putting the onus on your organisation to keep pace with market-leading talent practices. 

Connect with an HR Consultant to review your recruitment practices.


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