Preparing for your venture as a first generation Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) client can be a daunting experience. Doing anything for the first time comes with challenges, but beginning a brand new RPO engagement can be exponentially challenging given the size and scale of the program, the different stakeholders involved, and the various moving parts at play.
When we say "first generation RPO clients", we are referring to companies who decide to partner with an RPO provider to outsource talent acquisition services for the first time. These services can include but are not limited to: fulfilling hiring and onboarding needs, creating sourcing strategies to engage with passive and active candidates, managing exempt and non-exempt employee compliance, implementing innovative ATS solutions, integrating new technology, and measuring and monitoring key metrics.
The volatility of the current talent market has caused many organizations to reevaluate their talent acquisition and management strategies. Now, more and more companies are considering implementing an RPO solution for the very first time. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you take that first leap into your RPO journey.
What Are You Trying to Accomplish with Your Program?
Take time to perform a scope analysis before engaging with an RPO provider. RPO buyers need to be very transparent about what they require from their provider. How much responsibility will you delegate to the provider? What will be the goal your partnership aims to accomplish? Is your budget realistic - are you including recruiter salary, time and materials support, training costs, etc. into your cost analysis?
It is all too common and unfortunate to find companies hiring RPO providers without exercising enough due diligence. Lack of analysis results in confusion which leads to skepticism, and indecision, which can ultimately slow down and hinder the success of the new talent acquisition program.
Does Your RPO Program Address Your Individual Needs?
It’s typical when a company is reviewing outsourced recruitment processes for the first time to request an “optimal solution” without considering costs. Often, the company just needs basic solutions tailored to their unique needs. You may not need full life cycle recruitment services at the start − you may just require certain components of the hiring process to be outsourced.
Keep in mind that one of the best benefits of an RPO program is its scalability. As your company's talent acquisition program matures, solutions will continue to evolve and scale within your workplace. The scalable nature will ensure you are prepared to embrace any potential change within your organization and also have developmental tools ready to support that change. As your business grows and evolves, so will your RPO program. Make sure your RPO provider is offering you a long-term commitment to a partnership that continuously evolves and they're not just providing you with the services you need in the beginning.
Understand Your Data
According to SHRM, many HR leaders aren’t sure what data they need to be collecting in order to measure the success of their RPO program. Without understanding ways to effectively analyze and measure outcomes, it's difficult to judge how satisfying a data set is. Today’s engagements are likely to include sourcing technology that was not previously available, which can provide complex data analytics that show the reason behind sourcing and hiring.
It is essential for your talent solutions provider to coach you on how to understand the data and drill down into meaningful segments. When you understand the data, it's easier to provide actionable information to your C-level executives. In the initial stages of a 1st generation RPO program, measuring results is critical to support the decision to continue to pursue an RPO solution.
When you are talking about what the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are for your new program, often the data surrounding the job placements are the obvious data points that you and your RPO provider will discuss. But the true KPI is your ability to let them take care of the recruiting, allowing you to take care of your other priorities that you may have been neglecting before outsourcing. If the data is clean and straightforward, you will spend less time trying to understand if your program is delivering the results you need, and more time focusing on other pressing HR initiatives.
Reap the Benefits
When it comes down to it, any change management initiative can be managed well with a simple approach to address your business needs. The success of your program relies on honest, organized, and meaningful communication to ensure trust and reliance within your new engagement. If the partnership is transparent, the positive effects of the program will also be clear.
The growth and maturity of RPO programs over the past several years proves it’s an effective business process that can only become more effective and agile as there continues to be new innovations in the marketplace. Implementing an RPO program can be one of the best decisions you'll ever make for your talent acquisition process. As you join the ranks of the first generation RPO clients, sit back and enjoy the benefits of your new partnership.