For many growing businesses the decision to hire can bring a lot of excitement, but this comes with more work and a decision.  Should you build out your talent acquisition team or hire an outside agency to assist?

This post addresses some of the key differences between growing your internal recruiting team vs. partnering with an agency. It also offers some perspective on using an embedded recruiter approach where you reap the benefits of both.

Talent Acquisition Approaches-2

Counterpoint Solutions offers traditional contingency recruiting and we also offer an embedded approach where we work alongside the rest of your organization as an extension of your team.

As an embedded approach we participate in regular company meetings, other channels, and get to know people in your company. This results in a strong feedback loop for matching candidates to your culture and accelerates the hiring process while providing a great candidate experience.

1. Knowing your culture

An internal recruiter or an embedded recruiter can provide added gains in understanding the culture and vibe of the organization simply because they are part of your day to day team.

Embedded recruiters can attend meetings and have access to communication channels like email and Slack which gives them constant reinforcement on the company culture and dynamics. An outside recruiting firm typically doesn’t have this access.This can have a dramatic impact on hiring for fit.

Can you achieve the same results with an outside agency? Sure. However, you will just need to have more discussions to help the agency understand the nuances of your team, organization, and the core needs as you grow.

2. Scalability

It’s no secret that hiring and growth are rarely a linear path. You may have 2 positions open up one week and then suddenly need to hire 10 more and then have a flat growth pattern for the next 4 months or a year.

Is this your hiring trend?

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Or is it more like this?

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Hiring your first recruiter or expanding your internal recruiting team may limit your ability to quickly ramp up or ramp down your hiring.

Working with an embedded contract recruiter or external agency can help you scale your hiring with an as needed basis that can This can help augment your current talent acquisition efforts and ensure you keep on track when you hire.

3. Access to Recruiting Tools

One great benefit to working with an outside agency is their access to recruiting tools and added expertise in advanced sourcing techniques.

While some internal recruiters may have developed great sourcing techniques they may not have access to expensive paid platforms like a LinkedIn Recruiter license, applicant tracking system (ATS), assessment tools, and other subscription based tools that aid in quickly identifying candidates.

Recruiting Tools You can overcome this by buying your own licenses but the cost can be prohibitive unless you’re making many hires. Most outside agencies will have access to these tools.

Conversely, hiring an embedded contract recruiter can help you split the difference between these challenges by providing a seasoned recruiter with access to these tools.

Our embedded recruiters are also well versed in ATS platforms and if you haven’t chosen one we can help you find the right solution for your business.

4. Candidate Experience

Portrait of smiling casual designer using computer and digitizer in the officeBuilding and protecting a strong employer brand is critical to long term success as you grow your organization and candidate experience plays a huge role in how recent hires and applicants perceive your company.

Some contingent agencies do a great job at providing a positive candidate experience.That being said, the chances of a positive candidate experience will improve when working with an internal recruiter or embedded contract recruiter who knows the company more intimately.

There’s a different element of trust, rapport, and momentum that can be achieved simply by being a company insider.


5. Full cycle end-to-end recruiting

Recruiting is so much more than just sourcing a few candidates and presenting them for an opportunity. The process starts with a job post and doesn’t end until after you have hired and onboarded your new team member(s).

Your internal recruiting team or contract recruiter will often have end to end ownership for most or all aspects of the process from initial job description through onboarding which means less work and overhead for you to deal with.

Although great search firms may take on some of these additional tasks you may find that the agency leaves much of this up to you leaving a lot of work on your plate.

6. Process Improvement and Institutional Knowledge

Agency recruiters build up a lot of knowledge about your company as they work with you which helps you make great hires. However, most firms can’t advise or improve your hiring process from the outside unless they have a very special relationship with you.

Your internal team will see bottlenecks and process gaps and have the ability to advocate for improvements. Maybe your initial screening questions are too broad (or too narrow) or there’s an imbalance in the level or timing of technical assessments.

Having someone inside the organization notice and make these changes can help you improve and continue to operate your hiring with a high degree of confidence and care.

What is right for you?

Every company has different needs, timing, and challenges and what works for your business today might not work as well in six months or a year.

If this article has helped you reach a conclusion, then please let me know. I’d appreciate any feedback about your impressions.

If you’re still determining how to move forward and would like to discuss hiring plans and challenges please schedule time below or email and we’ll be in touch soon.