One of the basic foundations of the hiring process is finding people who are qualified and interested in a job. This can be a complex process for high-level positions, but for most hourly positions the process usually involves advertising in local newspapers or online forums. There is obviously a cost to this and it is, perhaps, the most direct cost comparable to that of working through a staffing agency.
However, the costs are not directly comparable. For example, a staffing agency may use advertising outlets to fill positions, but it will also employ job fairs, multiple online postings, leverage national relationships, and will tap into a database of job-seekers that is constantly refreshed. Many of these workers have a steady stream of assignments and are proven to be reliable employees. Recruiters at these agencies have often worked with these individuals over a long period of time and know their skill sets, desired schedules, and dependability.
Another important factor in the recruiting process is screening. Screening means looking at a pool of potential candidates and filtering out which individuals have the skills, background, and are in the pay scale you’re looking for. Screening is often overlooked but is vital in up and down economies. When unemployment is high, so many candidates flood the pool that screening can be difficult and when it is low, potential candidates are so scarce that knowing where to adjust the screen is necessary.
A pool of talent at any given moment can be limited and casting a random net into that pool may or may not garner results. Using a staffing agency is a more targeted approach that can help reduce turnover and mitigate many of the other process costs down the line.
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