Why they aren’t cutting the Mustard…

Adam Dolman

Why you get out what you put in when working with an agency.

I asked a new client what their main frustrations are when working with agencies, and why their current suppliers aren’t cutting the mustard.

They answered:

-Candidates don’t work out

-They waste time with putting the wrong people in

-They don’t understand our business

-They spam me with calls and are too pushy

We then drove 2 hours to see the client (the first agency they’d met for permanent recruitment) to dig deeper into why things weren’t working.

When we saw the site and environment it became clear that other agencies weren’t painting the right picture. Although an excellent employer, with lots of long-standing members of staff, it wasn’t for the faint hearted. Cold, wet, windy with an open entrance to the factory that created an efficient but unplanned wind tunnel. It was very dirty (I had to go home to shower and get changed straight after the visit!) and this is the main reason people haven’t hung around.

The client gave us an hour and a half of their time in a meeting room. We discussed their idea of a perfect candidate, and an imperfect one. We helped them to understand where compromises could be made in the interest of staff longevity, and they helped us to understand where on the specification we could adjust the brief. Between us, we came up with a great middle ground- these are the skills necessary to do the job, and this is the culture fit that will hopefully solve your vacancy long term. We then spent an hour and a half with the team to get their thoughts/ideas and to understand exactly what the job Is about- the good, the bad and the ugly.

We finished off by discussing the best way forward to communicate and work together. With the factory having no phone signal, we set fixed times to review shortlists at their convenience.

Within 3 weeks we set up an interview day with three suitable candidates with all the right skills and experience. Most importantly they understood exactly what they were headed into and were a good cultural fit.

This particular manufacturer gave us far more time, information, insight and understanding of their business and processes than they’d given any other agency before, which meant we gave more to the candidates. We were able to not only improve the selection process, but also the attraction process. The advertisement read like it had been written by someone who had been on site, experienced the company and attracted candidates with the right motivations and expectations.

We put 3 relevant candidates in, one candidate joined and has recently passed their probation period with flying colours. A great result all round.

It’s a two-way process of the agency assessing you, your business, your vacancy and you assessing the agency, their knowledge, their track record, meeting the consultant and getting a feel for how their values line up with yours. Regardless of who you use- meet them, see them and interview them as if they were joining you!

Get in touch to book a consultation as to how we can work together.