Five “D’oh!” Things Staffing and Recruiting Agencies Should Avoid

By Phil McCutchen posted 07-14-2015 13:34


How many Homer Simpson “D’oh!” moments have you had in the staffing and recruiting business?

We can all relate to Homer’s problem – it is all too easy sometimes to miss something obvious in the rush to get the sale, fill the order, or just follow through with a customer or candidate.

These little “D’oh’s” can add up to big dollars over time. So staying aware of them and putting a process in place to prevent them from happening will improve your profitability. Here is our Top Five common staffing and recruiting mistakes based on our survey of staffing and recruiting professionals:

ONE: Not remembering to bill or pay for an expense associated to an assignment.

Really? How much money do you want to leave on the table? This will increase the cost of the assignment to you, and reduce your profits. In our survey of staffing companies, 60% of respondents felt this was a problem, and 20% indicated that this happened once or twice a month.

TWO: Not following up with the candidate that did not get the job.

Today, when candidates and contractors can instantly provide good/bad feedback on your services, it’s vital to OVER-communicate. Yeah, I know that no one likes to be the bearer of bad news. But following-up with candidates keeps the door open to future placements or references. Still, in our survey, 100% of survey respondents related to this common mistake, and 30% indicated that it happened more than once or twice a week! To avoid this problem, set-up to-do activities in your system to remind yourself to communicate with the candidate. Even personalized automated emails sent regularly will help improve the perception of your agency in the candidate's eyes.

THREE: Calling customers to extend an assignment is a lot cheaper than finding a new assignment.

Sure, you’re already making contract employee quality assurance calls. But one or two calls is not enough. Making a follow-up call specifically to ask about extending the assignment can pay big dividends. You can find that the client really likes the work being done by the contract employee, or that, with a little training; the person assigned could easily handle a different, more profitable assignment. Of our survey respondents, 70% agreed that this was a common mistake.

FOUR: Not pre-qualifying resumes you receive before adding them to your database.

Here is a classic example of Garbage In, Garbage Out. Why would you clog up your candidate database with a bunch of unqualified resumes? By that I mean that you probably receive a lot of resumes for jobs you post that will never in any way, shape, or form fit any job order you will ever receive from your customers. Like your agency’s line of business is IT and you get resumes from pipe-fitters. The junk resumes will just slow down your searches and waste recruiter time. In our survey, only 40% of recruiters pre-qualified every resume they received. Spend the time up-front to qualify resumes and you’ll have a stronger database of candidates for your customers.

FIVE: Not asking for new orders.

This mistake is so obvious that it should be stamped on the phone of everyone making calls, “Always ask for more business!” OK, so this relates a little bit to number 4, but the reality is that many recruiters and staffing professionals can be reluctant to ask for more business – after all, that’s what sales reps are for, right? Wrong. Ingraining the concept of “everyone’s in sales” into all front-line staff can have huge pay-offs, even as it can cement your customer relationships as you work to find more openings for your services.

Process is power.

Every single one of these common “D’oh’s” is avoidable. And avoiding "D'oh" moments is what a top recruiting and staffing software can help do for you and your agency. With pre-determined workflow processes based on best practices, it can be your ever-vigilant assistant to track your activities, candidates, contractors, orders, fills, and back-office details – and prompt you to action – so that you don’t forget the little things that cost money. Remember, fewer “D’oh’s” equals more dough.

Sorry, couldn’t resist the pun.

1 comment



02-15-2016 08:44

Another thing some may not think of is saving out for Workers comp payments