By: John Hutchins, Quantix Vice President, Client Services
Many client managers value their IT staffing partner based on that partner’s ability to find quality candidates. Although this is an entirely understandable measure of an IT staffing firm’s intrinsic value to you at the moment, you’re likely missing some added value that your staffing partners could provide.
- Hiring Trends – Is it a candidate market or an employer market? Are employers utilizing contract, contract-to-hire or direct placement services? These are just two of many “hiring trend” questions that may impact your ability to successfully find and hire quality candidates. For example, if your staffing partner is seeing more companies doing direct hire and you’ve been focused on contract-to-hire, you may want to change your approach – especially if it is a candidate market. In a candidate market, the quality candidates likely receive multiple offers at the same time. If they are faced with having to choose between a contract-to-hire position or a direct hire position, they’ll likely choose the direct hire position because of the perceived increase in stability. You may be missing out on some of the best candidates simply because you don’t know the current hiring trends.
- Compensation Trends – What is the going salary for a particular skill set? How much can a candidate expect to increase their salary by changing jobs? Are your current employees earning market salaries or are you at risk of losing them? Are employers offering unique benefits or perks to attract top talent? Again, here are just a few sample questions your IT staffing partner could answer based on their unique view of the industry. This information could help you not only attract top talent to your company, but also help you keep the top talent you currently employ.
- Interview Techniques – What interview techniques work best? What interview techniques should be avoided? How long should the interview process take based on the current market? IT staffing firms witness thousands of client interviews each year. And, of course, we see which interview techniques work well and which are a complete waste of time. As numerous studies attest, making bad hires costs the employer far more than one would initially imagine. If you’re not asking your IT staffing partner to critique your interviewing process, you’re missing out on some valuable insight that could help you fill positions and save your company the money and frustration of making mistakes.
IT staffing firms work with hundreds of clients each year. As a result, they can offer a unique insight into the current employment market. Client managers are well advised to tap into this competitive intelligence and to begin thinking of their IT staffing partner as more than simply a “headhunter.”