More often than not, promotional staffing agencies can all fall into one big, complicated, over salesy blur which makes it extremely difficult to differentiate between them all. This makes it incredibly difficult to know which one to choose, and to know how to cut through the promo so you can actually find out if this is the right company for you to commit to.
You’ve probably received many emails, phone calls and even visits from these agencies giving you impressive pitches.
Expect to hear all of them say that they are different. They will all have a highly sought after, extremely quick and impressive way to collate the cream of the candidate crop. And unfortunately, more often than not this ‘unique process’ isn’t unique at all, and it’s something many companies find out after they have committed to the agency.
They will also more than likely tell you that they will provide a shining example of customer service, that they will work around you and your business needs.
You will also find that they truly big up their candidate database, to the point where you wonder how it is those candidates are struggling to find a job at all.
In order to cut through these continual untruths and hard sales pitches from agents, you need to be prepared to ask some very simple questions that will get right to the bottom of what you need to know.
Here are those questions:
How do you recruit candidates?
Rather than hearing how amazing and unique their process of recruiting is, ask them to actually tell you what that process is. You do not want to be spending money hiring a company that does what you can do in-house. You are out sourcing for a reason and they need cold hard facts about what they do that is different to what you could do yourself. Does the company simply post your job up on their website? You could do this yourself. What do they look at on applications in order to filter out candidates that are right for the job? Don’t be afraid to truly quiz them on their recruiting process, if they are the right agency for you they will be open and honest about the depth of their selection processes.
How are you different to other agencies?
Again, don’t accept any salesy rubbish. You want cold hard facts explaining how they are different to the hundreds of other agencies you’ve had contacting you throughout the year. Give them a minute or so to explain to you what they have to offer that’s so different to other agencies, and if what they tell you is not all fluff, they might be worth a shot.
What if you don’t fulfil your promises?
You have to get past the constant sentences starting with ‘We will definitely..’. You need to know realistically what kind of service you can expect to receive. Things can go wrong and you don’t want to be endlessly hearing lies and new promises over the phone for months when the agency struggles to fulfil their duties. The company should be open and honest with you and have a contingency plan if things don’t go the way they are supposed to. If they don’t and they are adamant everything will go as planned, they may well be the kind of company to keep you hanging on the end of the phone frustrated for a long time.
How consistent is your customer service?
You need to know that you will have one person, and one person alone who you can contact. You do not have the time to repeat yourself over and over again to different agency workers because John isn’t available right now, or Michael isn’t in the office. You should have a dedicated customer service rep.
How well do you retain staff?
You do not want to continually be dealing with new candidates because the agency are horrendous at retaining them. You need to know how much of a risk this is, and what the retention levels are like with this agency.
Essentially, the key thing to remember is to cut through the rubbish and get the truth out of these agencies. The right agency will give you honesty when you ask for it.