In Silicon Valley 2014 has seen a level of competition for talent not experienced in years. The wealth of opportunity has created a buyer’s market with top talent receiving upwards of 10 requests a week to consider a ‘great new role with an innovative company’.
Peel that back and you often find some of those requests are from multiple recruiters sourcing for the same role, for the same company. Using agencies to augment your recruiting efforts is a valuable component of your overall strategy, but how you engage and utilize agencies needs to change.
There is no margin for error in a market this dynamic. You can’t afford to further annoy prospects who are growing weary from all the outreach with duplication and inconsistent messaging. The confusion created, and seemingly desperate nature of such an approach, turns people off to your brand and ends the conversation before it even begins. Their attitude is ‘why should I waste my time hearing what you have to say when it’s clear you don’t have your act together and X, Y and Z do’.
Better to take a more strategic approach in how firms are utilized which starts by narrowing the field and partnering at a deeper level. Ideally select one great firm who can represent you with a consistent message about your company and the opportunity. Exclusive arrangements lend themselves to a more targeted approach with faster results and zero damage to your brand.
If multiple agencies is a must, keep the total number as small as possible and orchestrate how they are used to significantly reduce – or eliminate, overlap. Most companies have a large number of openings, so consider allocating roles among firms or periods of exclusivity on certain roles.
Above all, consider your company’s employment brand and take a page out of the marketing playbook. A cohesive message rich in depth on everything from your business, culture, environment, and how this role contributes toward its success, to how the opportunity aligns with one of their career objectives, will grab their attention and get them engaged in the process!