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If you’re the hiring manager or owner of a company, you probably already have your hands full with administering day-to-day business affairs and delegating work to your current employees. On top of this, if you need to find new employees with a specific skill set and a stellar work ethic, it’s going to be a challenge. It gets even tougher when you require an urgent hire.

This is where a staffing agency comes in.

What Does A Staffing Agency Do?

A staffing agency is a middleman, or your matchmaker, since it matches you with the candidate(s) that you need for your organization. This could be a temporary, project-based, or long-term hire, depending upon the requirements that you communicate to the staffing agency.

This is the process that most staffing agencies follow:

1. Connect With A Business

Before the candidate hunt begins, your company has to have an open and detailed discussion with the staffing agency about the candidate requirements, duration of work, the work culture (including company policies), and the salary for the role. This lays the groundwork for your hired staffing agency to find the most suitable professional.

2. Posting About The Job

The agency will then design a job post to attract relevant applicants using the information you shared during the meetings. The job is then published on a job board, a certain community page, or on the agency’s platform.

3. Conducting Skills Test & Interview

Candidates are filtered from all of the applications according to their resumes and contacted to carry out a skills test. For instance, for the role of a graphic designer, the test could be to develop an infographic during a recorded online session. The agency then schedules an interview with the selected candidates to gauge their personality and soft skills. Some staffing agencies may have an even more rigorous recruitment process, which entails several stages of interviews.

4. Briefing Candidate About Role & Company

The candidates have a detailed session with the staffing agency for a better understanding of their professional expectations and legal rights during their work with the company. Many staffing agencies draw up a contract themselves and pay the short-term hires directly.

5. Referring Back To Company

The staffing agency now informs the company that their desired candidate has been found. The company’s hiring manager may choose to interview the candidate themselves at this point. 

Benefits Of Hiring A Staffing Agency

It is understandable to be skeptical of an external organization to find staff for your business. So then why do companies hire staffing agencies?

1. Saves Resources

The hiring process takes time to go through countless job applications. It can also be expensive to get ads designed and posted on different job platforms which also require a fee. The staffing agency, on the other hand, would handle the entire recruitment process and charge you a certain commission on each worker’s pay.

Though different agencies could ask for additional fees, this option will let you be more resource-efficient than doing it yourself whenever a new hire is required.

2. Testing Before Full-Time Hiring

With staffing agencies, you can hire staff on short-time contracts or solely based on projects. If you find a professional to be the right fit for your company with a desirable skill set, you can always hire them as a direct, full-time employee. This gives you the time to test out an individual and assess whether you need them permanently in your organization.

3. Diverse Candidates

Diversity goes beyond gender and ethnicity, and includes creative capabilities which help your company grow. However, businesses have a limited reach and might not be able to access individuals of diverse backgrounds and careers. Staffing agencies, on the other hand, have a wide network of employable individuals along with access to professional platforms that your company may not even be aware of.

4. Lowered Hiring Risks

Imagine you hire an employee yourself, and find out two months into their employment that they’re not a good fit for your company. You spent time and other resources on hiring them, and now you have to spend more during the termination process. This is a best-case scenario, but your worst case is losing clients or customers because your new hire isn’t actually qualified enough.

Staffing agencies reduce these risks significantly with their background checks and intensive screening.

5. Expert Hiring Process

The staffing agency has an entire business model for hiring the most suitable candidates for every job. The agency has the network, the industry knowledge, and the resources to make sure that the hiring process targets every requirement.

6. Temporary Work

Sometimes you only need a specific professional for a short project that may be starting soon. It doesn’t make sense to carry out an entire hiring process (that too on an urgent basis) for a temporary position, and that’s where a staffing agency would help you out.

How To Hire The Right Staffing Agency?

Whether you’re in need of employees in LA, looking for help in the Midwest, or searching for the best staffing agencies in DC, here are four important features that you should be looking for in a staffing agency:

1. Niche Industries

If you’re a marketing company or a bakery business, hiring an agency that is specific to your industry will get you better candidates. This is because a staffing agency with a niche would be more informed about the specific market trends and the necessary qualifications for skilled professionals.

2. Transparent Process

Drill your prospective staffing agency about their recruitment process, including every stage and the resources they use. This would give you an idea of how organized and efficient the organization’s working process is.

3. Receptive

The staffing agency needs to find and tailor candidates according to your needs. For this to happen, they need to be actively listening while questioning you about your company, policies, and values.

4. Customer Service

If a staffing agency is quick and responsive, with a professional understanding of your time, it’s a good sign. After all, you need to know whether you can rely on it to deliver the best workforce for your company. 

But even post hiring, you will be communicating with the agency about the employee or different work details. Therefore, customer service is a good indicator of whether you should build a long-term relationship with a staffing agency.

Can You Use Multiple Staffing Agencies?

If you want an even bigger and more diverse pool of candidates, or maybe just a faster recruitment process, you could hire more than one staffing agency at a time. This would mean that you have multiple options to choose from, so you can compare different referred candidates simultaneously. Some businesses work with multiple staffing agencies at once for these reasons.

But Should You?

Managing relations with several staffing agencies can be challenging and might lead to gaps in communication. Moreover, you would be sharing company information with third parties. You should keep in mind that it might increase the risk of your confidential information being leaked. There are pros and cons, but the right answer depends on your company’s needs and policies. 

It’s also important to know that not all staffing agencies would agree to work with a company that plans on hiring other professional recruiters.

In A Nutshell

Staffing agencies are meant to make the hiring process easier and to offer diverse employment options for the company as well as the candidate. It’s also an option that businesses have been benefiting from for a long time, but it’s getting more and more popular now because of emerging working models. If you’ve been struggling with adding valuable members to your team, maybe it’s time you try hiring a staffing agency.