How to Win More Clients in the Competitive Australian Staffing Market
February 4, 2015
Australia’s recruitment landscape has transformed dramatically in the past five years. It's so overwhelmed by ‘white noise’ data, communications and information that most candidates simply zone out. This has major repercussions for any staffing agency trying to connect with elusive top talent and grow their client base. Fortunately, there are simple steps you can take to ensure your agency doesn’t get lost in the mix.
2015: The priorities, challenges and opportunities
In LinkedIn’s 2015 Australia Staffing Trends report, 58% of respondents said their top priority was growing their client base. 69% said “availability of quality talent” was their biggest obstacle, followed by “increased competition."
It’s no wonder there has been a renewed focus on branding. Online professional networks have become the top channel for promoting a firm’s brand. Conversely, firm websites and job boards have declined. Yet while 73% of recruiters agree their brand has significant business growth potential, just 61% have a brand strategy, and less than half (48%) have the resources to build their brand.
Take the marketer’s approach
Clearly a fresh approach is required. It’s time to take a leaf out of the marketer’s handbook. Smart recruiters are now investing in their brands and engaging with prospects so that their agency is always top of mind.
Here are five tips to build your client base and position your brand as the only choice for prospective clients.
1. Tap into the passive candidate market
In Australia, 78% of professionals consider themselves “passive”. The best way to engage with passive candidates is to use social professional networks. Social professional networks have become the most important source of quality placements in Australia, with a 20% increase since 2011.
2. Build a killer personal brand
Remember, a personal LinkedIn profile may be the first place a client visits to research both you and your firm. Use it to provide a snapshot of your professional knowledge, capabilities and achievements.
3. Stay visible and accessible
Rather than hounding prospects relentlessly through labour-intensive conversations, stay top of mind by using indirect channels like LinkedIn Status Updates and Twitter. Post articles about the target market’s industry to keep prospects informed – and interested.
4. Engage with target talent
Using LinkedIn as a starting point, there are two key ways to become a thought leader. First, share status updates. Include images, videos and presentations in your updates. The more likes, comments and shares your content receives, the wider it spreads. And remember: post, don’t sell! Secondly, participate in Groups. There are more than 2.1 million Groups on LinkedIn. Industry and geographic-specific Groups can be an effective channel to engage with potential clients.
Scott MacDonald, chief operating officer, Stellar Recruitment, discovered social recruiting enabled him to more easily engage with candidates in the diverse markets his clients operated in. “LinkedIn Talent Solutions is far more powerful than just a sourcing tool,” he says. “It’s also a platform you can use to create a compelling brand and value proposition for your business.”
5. Use ALL available social tools
LinkedIn‘s recruitment professional services provides you with powerful search filters, the ability to reach out directly to candidates and clients, and features to help you manage your workflow. For example:
- Use Search Alert for the roles and companies you typically work with and make placements for.
- Use the Alumni tool to connect with people you went to school or university with.
- Use LinkedIn’s Company and Career Pages to gain an insight into a company’s hiring activities.
All about engagement…
Advertising, direct mail, websites, referrals or blogs all play a role in building a brand and gaining a competitive advantage. However, the first step is to uncover and communicate why your business is different to all others. Thanks to social professional networks, you have the forum to do just that.
Go forth, engage and prosper!
To discover more about staffing priorities for the next 12 months, download our free 2015 Australia Staffing Trends Report.
*Image by Su-Hwan Pyo