Staffing Agencies: What’s With All the Sameness?

The staffing industry is large and growing. And though the industry felt the effects of the recession as much as any other industry, in 2012 staffing companies hired 11.5 million people for both temporary and contract work, a sizable piece of the workforce.

But with so many staffing agencies available, how in the world is one supposed to stand out above the rest? When the goal of each is just about the same – to partner with companies in order to fill their open positions – what can a staffing company leverage in order to help them stand apart?

To begin, a staffing agency will stand out if it has a clear focus on clientele. Matt Lowney at ere.net says this means that a staffing agency should not have every company in town as a client. If staffing agencies contract with every business, it limits the ability for them to leverage with a single company by showing how they can take talent away from a competitor who may be in the same area.

Lowney also discusses the ever-daunting task of creating a strong presence or statement which describes how your services are unique. “Talk about your recruiting process, client relations, local market connections, and client success,” Lowney says in order to nail down who you’re serving and how best to serve them. You also create a stronger presence by understanding what your neighborly competition is doing. Seek to understand how they are drawing in their clients and try something different to attract your own. As Lowney remarks, “this in-depth knowledge of the competitive landscape should provide you with worlds of opportunity,” as well as place you above the rest, who are likely not spending much time trying to do things differently than their competitors.

It is also beneficial for a staffing agency to keep on top of developing technology in order to attract tech-savvy clients. Spark Hire’s video interviewing tactics are just one example of technology that could help to set your staffing agency apart. Tired of dealing with the unfortunate skills gap? Video interviews can help staffing professionals connect with highly skilled and highly desired passive job seekers. Also, a hiring manager can conduct ten one-way video interviews in the same time it takes to make a single screening phone call. When staffing pros can vet more candidates faster, they’ll spend less time overall looking for someone to fill their open positions. Lastly, video interviews can help you get around some of the traditional roadblocks of recruiting, such as aligning schedules for interviews and time wasted due to travel to and from an interview.

And whenever you can, focus on the people you have working for you. Trust your employees to be better sales people than the competition and give them the tools they need to make the case for your agency over another.

What have you found to be effective for an agency who wants to stand above the rest? Leave us a comment and let us know!

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by Leyram Odacrem