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Problem
I’ve heard hiring managers say that giving several agencies the same job order to work on creates a healthy competition that leads to a stronger candidate. There’s nothing healthy about it. In reality, this approach is bad for you and your business. It will cost you more time and money and greatly decreases the likelihood of getting a candidate from the Top 10% of the talent pool in the marketplace.

Race To The Bottom
Instead, you’ve created a race to see which agency can find the best from the active candidates in their databases rather than the best in the marketplace. Recruiters become concerned with speed and getting resumes to you as soon as possible. As a result, quality often suffers and you as the hiring manager waste time, money and end up settling on the best candidate from a mediocre pool of talent. Do you want the best candidate from their database or do you want the best from the Top 10% of the talent pool in the marketplace?

A typical scenario plays out like this: you get a new job order and you reach out to four different agencies to help you fill it. Here’s what happens when you do this:

  • You are essentially telling each agency that they are only going to get 25% of your time. You are also permitting these agencies to spend only 25% of their time working on your order. Recruiters are commission-based and have to focus their time and resources on orders that have the highest probability of them being able to fill them. If they don’t fill an order, they don’t get paid.
  • You’ll get somewhere between 3-8 resumes from each agency and each one will expect feedback from you. Doing the math, that’s feedback for all 12-32 candidates. The time drain is much higher than that when you factor in the 2nd, 3rd and even 4th level interviews for those that move on. Wouldn’t it be a better use of your time and resources to interview 3-5 candidates from a much stronger talent pool?

A Better Way
Use competition to your advantage by allowing agencies from the beginning to compete against one another on why they should be the only agency to work on filling your order. When you go with just one agency you are giving them the freedom and permission to find you the very best talent out there in the marketplace. A great recruiter will take the time to dig into your job order to help them thoroughly understand your ideal candidate. They’ll also spend time meeting with each of the key stakeholders and visit your facility to learn your culture and work environment.

Doing this work, in the beginning, will save you time and money in the end. You’ll spend less time interviewing candidates and passing feedback back and forth. And since you’re working with only one agency you don’t have to pass the same information to three other agencies. You are going to save your company valuable time and money and you greatly increase the likelihood of getting a candidate from the Top 10% of the talent pool in the marketplace.

Eddie Finnigan
Two Rivers Recruitment