It’s really the only question I have to answer when I call on a potential client to try and get their staffing business.
Why should you work with HRU vs. the thousands of other choices you have?
It’s not a cost issue for 99% of the business development calls I make. If a company has decided we need to engage a staffing firm – whether it’s for direct search or contract staffing – cost has very little to do with their final decision. Everyone likes to get the ‘best’ price – but in staffing you’re talking about talent. I’ve never met an HR executive or operational executive that wouldn’t in a heartbeat pay thousands of dollars more for a more talented candidate versus a candidate that fits the requirements but seems like a “B” level player. Corporate HR/Talent Pros constantly get frustrated with staffing firms for doing this! They tell us they want “X” candidate for $80K and we send over “X” candidate for $90K. They say they aren’t interested. So, we send over a $80K candidate. They interview $80K candidate. They they call us and say “Can we interview $90K candidate?” It happens constantly. Don’t hate the staffing company, hate the game.
It’s not a talent issue, either. What!? It’s not. The reality of staffing is that all companies have the exact same access to talent. Some companies are just faster at uncovering that talent versus others. In my 20 years of staffing – I’ve really seen very little difference in the quality of talent good staffing firms offer up to their clients (and remember, I’ve been on both sides of the fence on this – corporate and agency). Don’t get me wrong – bad staffing firms do very little vetting of candidates and just flow paper to you. Good staffing firms should be sending you fully vetted candidates. I like to tell my recruiters – “We are the sure thing!” When a company wants to interview or hire one of our candidates, the only thing they should hear is: “When would you like them to start?”
So, what is it? It’s a relationship issue. When I worked with a staffing firm, I needed to have trust in the people I was working with. I didn’t care about their brand or their process. I cared about how much do I trust this company is going to represent us as a company to the talent base that is out there. Period. Don’t get wrong – they better deliver great talent – but I’m assuming that is a given – if I decided to work with them! Trust. Part of that trust comes with full disclosure as well. Most staffing companies hate this! But I came from their world – I knew the game. So, if you wanted to play with me – I wanted to know everything. I was going to let you make money – but I wanted to know where it was being made. That helps me sharpen up my internal process. If a staffing firm really wanted to be a partner with me – then this wasn’t an issue. I wanted to see them succeed, just as they wanted to see our organization succeed. Most corporate HR/Talent Pros don’t have this mindset. They feel staffing firms are ‘out to get them’ and not a partner. They need to cut those relationships.
It works both ways. I stopped doing business with a really good paying client in 2012. Why? Because they were a pain to work with and didn’t get that this relationship should work for both parties. I want to work with people I truly like. People I would go on vacation with. Right now – every single one of our clients at HRU – I would go on vacation with. I would invite them to my house for dinner. I would look forward to having a drink with after work. That is why I love coming to work. It’s not stressful on either side – the way it should be. I understand their challenges and they understand my challenges and we can have ‘real’ conversations about each other – and provide feedback.
That is pretty rare in this industry.
Want to be apart of this? Contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org; call 517-908-3156 or tweet me @TimSackett – I look forward to the conversation! Also check out my staff – I’d definitely go on vacation with any of these good looking people!