The Reason Why More Candidates Don't Use Staffing Firms

May 20, 2015

Staffing firms, this one’s for you. We unearthed some interesting insights into professionals’ opinions of and experience with agencies in our Talent Trends survey, a study of 20,000+ professionals all over the world.

The biggest takeaway: candidates want to hear from you just as much as they want to hear from an in-house recruiter. The number of people who said they were willing to hear from in-house recruiters (73%) is the same as the number of people willing to hear from headhunters.

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Why more candidates aren’t using staffing agencies

The problem is, many people just don’t have any experience with headhunters. Only 35% of respondents to the Talent Trends survey have ever used a staffing firm to find a new job opportunity.

Yet there’s opportunity here for you: companies are increasing their use of staffing agencies to find top talent. The American Staffing Association reports that staffing employment has returned to pre-recession levels. And 4.8 million jobs remain unfilled in the US. Reports show that some companies are turning to staffing agencies for those hard-to-fill positions.

We dug deeper into the Talent Trends survey results to better understand why so many candidates aren’t also turning to agencies to help them find their next opportunity.

We learned that it’s not a question of bad experiences. When candidates do use headhunters, 74% reported having a good experience. It’s also not due to lack of results. Of candidates who used a staffing agency and were interviewed, 41% were offered a job.

We discovered it’s really a question of awareness -- both of the agency and the jobs it can provide. Only 18% of respondents said they think of a staffing firm when looking for a new job.

Boost your brand and win more business

Building your personal and company brand will enable you to capitalize on the rising use of staffing agencies, by getting the right opportunities in front of the right clients -- and the right candidates.

How? You can start by making friends before you need them. Try these tips to build your LinkedIn network and engage potential candidates proactively. That way, the next time they’re looking, they’ll come to you first.

  1. Set up your Company Page. Your Company Page on LinkedIn is where clients and candidates will go to learn more about you. Make sure it showcases your unique capabilities.
  2. Grow your follower base. 79% of followers are interested in job opportunities from companies they follow. Promote your Company Page on social channels like Twitter or Facebook, and ask your employees to spread the word.
  3. Engage followers with status updates. Company status updates let you nurture your followers at scale. You can target your updates by job function, seniority, and geography. Be sure to include a balanced mix of job opportunities, industry news and information about your firm.

Ultimately, we want to help connect more (and better) candidates with recruiting agencies, helping top talent find jobs faster and making it easier for companies to fill important positions.

Looking for ways to find new clients on LinkedIn? Check out the Staffing Professional’s Guide to Business Development on LinkedIn.

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