Putting Quality First When Sourcing Contract Workers

Putting Quality First When Outsourcing Contract WorkersWhen it comes to contingent staffing, most companies tend to favor suppliers who submit candidates fast. While there’s no doubt that a timely response is important when you’re competing for top talent, an analysis from the IBM Smarter Workforce Institute reveals that staffing buyers and hiring managers need to manage the trade-off between time to fill and the desire for the highest quality hires.

Specifically, the data shows that efficiency metrics, like time to submit or time to fill, are associated with an increase in hiring mistakes—by up to 11 percentage points. On the other hand, effectiveness metrics, like quality of hire, are associated with a decrease in hiring mistakes—by nearly 18 percentage points.

Putting too much emphasis on speed encourages suppliers to rely on keyword matching to identify candidates and to submit the first person they reach via phone or email instead of the most qualified professional.

Some recruiters may even skip important steps in the selection process. For instance, failing to confirm a contractor’s availability or suitability for a specific project or scope of work before submitting their resume can force a hiring manager to spend far more time interviewing and impact assignment completion rates. To gain speed, recruiters often make sacrifices.

Moreover, organizations that prioritize quality over quantity seem to be realizing the most benefit at least in terms of good hiring decisions, according to the IBM data. With that in mind, here are some ways that you and your staffing suppliers can put a greater focus on the quality of submitted candidate slates.

Provide a Candidate Summary

Most resumes provide a general overview of a candidate’s work experience – not specific information connecting a candidate’s technical skills, certifications and experience to a particular project or scope of work. On the other hand, a candidate profile using the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) methodology provides relevant details that illustrate why a contractor is qualified for an assignment, reducing the need for phone screens and interviews with candidates that aren’t a good fit.

Anyone can load up their resume with buzzwords to get past resume screening software. A profile ensures that a candidate was screened specifically for a company and assignment, compared to others and submitted because he or she meets the most important criteria.

Proactively Find and Recruit Suitable Talent

Waiting until a requisition comes in to search the database often leads to a large pool of unqualified candidates, hasty, mismatched submittals and so-so results. Taking note of a client’s most frequent contract needs and proactively searching the database lets recruiters build a customized pool of interested, qualified candidates that align with the most important criteria.

By using sophisticated database segmentation techniques and relationship management, recruiters can keep candidates interested and engaged until you need them. Then, when a requisition comes in, staffing partners can respond in a reasonable amount of time without sacrificing quality.

Focus on Quality, Not Speed

Instead of forwarding the first resumes you receive to the hiring manager, encourage staffing suppliers to focus more carefully on the quality of their submittals by waiting and passing along the most qualified candidates.

Give staffing firms at least 24 hours to dive into the order, narrow down search results and assemble their slates. Then, review the submitted profiles and resumes, talk to the recruiters and make the hiring manager’s job easier by passing along only the most suitably qualified candidates.

Speed without quality is a recipe for disaster. The goal of staffing buyers and their staffing partners is to drive results and shorten the hiring process by providing contingent workers that are a good fit for an open position. It’s not always about who has the fastest response time. Sometimes, receiving good quality contract talent quickly is the best way to ensure that you’re hiring the very best candidate for an assignment.

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