Four growth strategies to build a resilient recruitment business

Authored By Aaron McIntosh

Aaron McIntosh is the General Manager of APSCo Australia, Affiliate Member, Bullhorn

According to Bullhorn’s Global Recruitment Insights and Data (GRID), 81% of Australian recruiters are anticipating healthy growth in both revenue and hiring needs for their firms in 2019. In spite of this, many small recruitment firms aren’t truly geared for growth because they still use outdated technical systems and aren’t keeping up to speed with the latest recruitment trends.

To be able to manage the upsurge in growth and capitalise on a buoyant economy, these recruitment companies need to invest in the appropriate technology and upskill in the right areas. Here are some of the most effective strategies that they – and other recruiters
in a similar position –can adopt instantly to gear their business for growth.

Upskill and reskill employees in the latest technology

As is the norm across many industries today, recruitment professionals must reskill and upskill to remain relevant, as clients will increasingly start looking for more strategic “workforce solutions,” rather than just recruitment assistance. Recruiters that adopt new HR technology tools will be able to source more and better candidates, while also being more productive. 

One area that is worth recruiters training up in is data analytics. Social media and recruitment tools are providing enormous amounts of data which they can use in the hunt for the best candidates. The ability to use advanced analytics to assess data to help ensure successful future hires is one of the key benefits of HR tech tools. These automation tools can also improve an agency’s competitive position in both familiar and new markets.

Marketing automation software is another recommended tool set. These programmes allow you to segment and streamline your search, and you can use their analytics to determine if your approach is both effective and engaging.

Design strategies to attract the best candidates

Our research found that nearly 50% of recruitment companies do not have a marketing budget or strategy in place. Of these, 87% do not have a chief marketing officer, and 74% do not have a VP of marketing either.

With the recruitment market becoming ever-more saturated, top candidates have a plethora of options to select from. To gain their trust and inspire them to choose you over your competitors, you need to give them a reason to do so. A carefully crafted marketing campaign, used in conjunction with the right marketing automation software, will help you stand out from the rest.

On a positive note, our research revealed that nearly 60% of recruiters plan to invest more in social media this year, while others will spend more of their budget on email marketing and job boards. Progressive recruiters should be tapping into these platforms, as unique and carefully targeted content will increase your chances of reaching desirable candidates. In fact, personalised communication is the key to guaranteed success.  

Create scalable systems and processes

We strongly recommend that decisions related to technology acquisition are made in accordance with forecasted business growth. You need scalable technology that can easily grow and develop alongside the business. This is where the concept of “true cloud” software comes into its own. With a true cloud provider, all customers typically access the same solution from the same cloud (multitenancy). This gives customers continuous and instantaneous access to the latest product upgrades. In addition, the software should have minimal installation requirements; be customised to bring out new features (in real time and with no added costs); and be reliable, secure, and easily configurable with open APIs for customisation.

GDPR and similar regulations present several challenges in terms of compliance, so your roadmap should also allow for a comprehensive data management strategy. But regulations aside, poor data management can also be a real stumbling block for expanding recruitment businesses as it can throw teams in complete disarray – causing client work to be processed sluggishly and inadequately.

Cut costs and increase efficiency

Traditionally, individual consultants were exclusively responsible for the candidate experience. Instead, technology can be applied to perform mundane tasks that take up time. It can screen and assess CVs, schedule appointments, and rule out unsuitable candidates. Having a single, centralised system to manage the recruitment process from sourcing to onboarding will give you a much-needed competitive advantage, turning over client work faster and increasing revenue.

In terms of core tasks (sourcing and placing candidates), getting the right tech stack can save you time and money, and put you leaps and bounds ahead of your competitors. CRM and ATS systems are effective tools that can manage the process from start to finish.

Australian recruiters need to be willing to adopt and embrace new technology if they want to future-proof their businesses and become more efficient. No matter the size, the most competitive firms will be the ones who stay informed of trends and make them part of their daily activities. As talent acquisition becomes increasingly challenging in a changing employment market, it’s the turn of recruitment to leverage the automation revolution.


Find out more about building resilience in your recruitment business at Dr. Natalie Flatt's Management Masterclass, get in quick, it's on next week.