I’ve been very fortunate to have worked in the recruitment industry for over 20 years now, and am privileged to work in a firm that has almost 60 years in the market. It has been fascinating to see how our sector has evolved during that time.

I’ve worked in both South Africa and Australia (which are obviously completely different markets, not just in terms of methodology), and in my time in Melbourne (like many recruiters who have been in the job for more than a few years) have encountered: a financial crisis; COVID-19; a shift in demand for internal recruitment and RPO providers; as well as a substantial uptick in the volume of recruitment firms in (and out) of our market.

One thing that has remained constant is the very distinct camps of employers. From those that use recruiters in a highly transactional maybe they’ll be lucky kind of way, to the others who are highly invested in their recruitment process. The later understands the tremendous value that a recruitment firm can offer, which also goes for internal talent teams.

Here are some of the benefits of establishing a trusted business relationship with a recruitment partner:

  • Clearly communicate your EVP and shared values
  • Provide insights into the talent market and industry sector trends
  • Customise talent pooling according to your growth strategy
  • With synergy, increase the predictability of the right hire, first time
  • Positive brand management, especially with unsuccessful candidates
  • Increase talent retention and added value
  • Better succession planning
  • A much better return on your recruiting investment and budget

Sometimes we hear phrases that aren’t conducive to attracting quality candidates and ensuring a successful recruitment process:

  • “I don’t have time to meet you to discuss the role…”
  • “Just send me your 2 or 3 best candidates…”
  • “I don’t see why we should go retained…”

Thankfully, I haven’t heard those amongst the clients I currently work with.

It bemuses me that some organisations still approach recruitment on a contingent basis, creating competition amongst numerous agencies, thinking that they will get a better spread of the market, or increase their odds of securing the perfect candidate. After doing the appropriate due diligence to assess capability, I certainly wouldn’t hire multiple architects to design my house. Can you imagine the result, if it even got built?

Of course recruitment is no different to any industry where there are a plethora of providers of varying ability and quality. Market conditions are always going to shift, but what our most valued clients have in common with Slade Group is that each one of them have sought to work with us to nurture and develop the relationship. Often in larger organisations, this includes their HR Business Partners. We’ve managed with them through economic cycles, and over time our comprehension of their business, its strategies, challenges and their team, has increased exponentially.

Setting out with an understanding that the hiring process is as important to your recruitment partner as it is to you is a good first step when commencing the journey towards a deep and ultimately commercially rewarding relationship. A recruitment partner who is genuinely invested in the success of your organisation – as one client put it to me, “A thinking partner to my business” – now that sounds like good value.

I’d be very interested to know what you value most in your professional partnerships. If you’re happy to share, please comment below. Connect with me on LinkedIn, or contact me on bhodson@sladegroup.com.au or 0466 881 552.