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M4 Retail Recruitment Agency

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Selecting Agencies

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M4 Corridor Ltd
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M4 Retail / Recruitment Agency / Employers / Selecting Recruitment Agencies

Selecting Recruitment Agencies

There are many, many recruitment agencies up and down the country, some good, some bad, and choosing the right one for your business needs can be an onerous task. Here are a few pointers to help you decide:

1. Expertise: This is perhaps the most important factor when it comes to choosing a recruitment agency. Do they know anything about your industry? Have they recruited into your sector before? Do they know exactly what type of people you are looking for? Avoid agencies that claim to recruit into every industry and every sector on God's earth because the last thing you need is a Jack of all trades.

2. Size: The physical size of an agency isn't overly important. There are some brilliant recruitment consultants out there who simply work for themselves. There are also some very good multinational ones. However, do make sure that your agency of choice owns or has access to a very large database of jobseekers.

3. Philosophy: Ask the agency what their philosophy is, how they go about recruiting staff for their clients. Avoid agencies who are going to send you dozens and dozens of CVs for each position. After all, it is their job to do the screening and filtering on your behalf. The best agencies will send you just a handful of very good candidates, and you'll want to employ them all!

4. Be selective: Having drawn up a list of agencies don't make the mistake of thinking a blanket approach automatically increases your chances of success. This is not to say that it won't work, however a consultant's time is limited and if they think they are competing with many other agencies your will inevitable become a low priority client. If they believe you are focused on their efforts, they will be more focused on you.

5. Build a relationship: Communication is vital in all relationships and no less so than with your consultants. Not only do they keep the interest and focus alive, but also new things can be learnt with every conversation to build greater understanding and/or update any minor changes in circumstance.

6. Agree timetables and methodology: A great deal of frustration can be saved if these areas are agreed up front. A consultant who has 'moved mountains' to find and organise meetings will be far less likely to do so again if he feels that there is a lack of any real urgency and he was just being sounded out on the current marketplace. Likewise if the interview process is unnecessarily slow and cumbersome and therefore more likely to be unsuccessful it will have an extremely demotivating effect on the next time around.

7. Fees: This is a tricky one. It really is a case of 'you get what you pay for'. Some agencies charge fees in excess of 30%, which may seem a lot, but if you're looking for someone special they'll work extremely hard to find you the right person. Others offer a budget service, sometimes 10% or even lower. But these agencies won't spend to much time proactively looking for the right person for your vacancy. They are really hoping that a good CV is going to land in their laps. Don't hold your breath with these guys. As a rule of thumb expect to pay somewhere between 15% and 25%, depending on the salary level.