Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Recruiting firms and the value chain

Construct a value chain for recruiting and recruitment firms (whatever you call them) have a role.  The aim for the corporate recruiter is not to try and eliminate them from the chain, it's how to ensure that they add as much value as possible, by focussing their role to one you can't provide, or can't provide efficiently.

Why do I write this?  Two reasons:  first I am currently meeting our existing suppliers and some firms that I know.  Some are local specialists, some are the 'big names'.  I'm asking them about how we could do it better, what our positioning in the market is etc.  What can we do to make their life easier?  I want to know the anecdotes and rumours about what is happening in our market.

Secondly I'm aware that many corporate recruiters seem to want to reduce or eliminate their involvement.  I think that is often a mistake.  For any company going direct to market is an option, but just like any other sector, it's often not the only option or even the right one.  Sometimes it is better developing a strong sales channel.  That involves time and energy, effectively training the channel how to sell more effectively.  The only thing that is clear is that an approach without any channel development is wrong for such a complex 'product'. 

The question for most recruiters should not be 'how do I eliminate recruitment firms' but 'how do I increase the value they add'.  We may think that they are horrendously expensive but focus them correctly and they're worth it.