The recruitment industry is a cutthroat industry. Companies are forever in competition to search for top talents. Based on a survey of nearly 4000 corporate talent acquisition leaders from 35 countries, 57% of them are putting competition for talent as among the top challenges they had to face in the year 2017. 

Companies reach out to staffing firms to get them the talents they need. However, even among these staffing firms, competition has also become fiercer.

Various recruitment firms have already emerged in the market. According to The Online Recruitment Source, there are almost 900 new agencies registered in January 2017. For a staffing firm, standing out is going to be a challenge with these many competitors.

Whether you’re a newcomer to this industry or an old player, it’s always best to get to know your competition. One way to do this is by creating a competitor review.

Creating a competitor review can keep you up to date about the latest developments in the market. It will also widen your knowledge of the industry, identify investment-worthy technologies, direct you to different market opportunities, and allow you to respond to unexpected market changes quickly.

So now you get that a competitor review is crucial for your staffing firm to remain on top, but you’re still at a loss at how you’re supposed to do this. You start asking yourself, “What exactly are the information am I supposed to include in my competitor review?”

What You Should Include In Your Competitor Review

When you start a business, you have to be familiar with the competitive landscape you’re will be dealing with. You have to know who are the businesses targeting the same customers, the resources they have, and the bases they compete with in terms of expertise and price.

Regularly checking on your competitors and finding out what they are up to can help you compete more effectively. Remember that keeping an eye out on your competition may be a strategic move on your part, but your primary goal is to drive shareholder value.

You should meet the demands of your target audience better than your competition by looking for ways to innovate get ahead of the curve.

Who are your competitors?

To be a staffing firm worth your salt, you have to know your competitors located locally or internationally. You can get information on the existence of your competitors by checking out local business directories, local Chamber of Commerce, advertising, press reports, questionnaires, the internet, and information provided by customers.

Who are their customers?

Find out what types of companies are getting their services, and which products and services these companies are demanding from them. Some staffing firms are frequented by companies in the medical field, IT-related field, or call center agencies.

What products and services are they offering?

You have to be familiar with the services, free services, extras, and other related products your competitors are offering.  Find out which firms are rendering similar services like yours.

What’s different about them?

What’s so different about your competitors that have gained them their loyal customers? Explore these angles, and whatever information you learn by this research, you can use it as a template for your next innovative strategy for your staffing firm.

What are their strengths and weaknesses?

Some staffing firms may have competitive prices that clients find attractive, but on the downside, they may have inferior services. Alternatively, their recruitment services may be one of the best in the industry but have poor customer services.

For staffing firms, developing your talent acquisition capabilities is always going to be on top of your priorities. Hence, in previous years, as part of their strategy to strengthen their recruitment services, some staffing firms have chosen to offshore.

Evaluate Your Data

After collecting all these data about your competitors, it’s time for you to evaluate the information you have in hand. A thorough assessment of these data can tell you the industry gaps that you can use to work in your favor. You also need to find out whether certain sectors in the market already has an overabundance of suppliers. You can decide to divert your attention to less competitive sectors.

However, among all the information listed in your competitor review, it’s best to give special attention to your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses. By having a comprehensive evaluation of these kinds of information, you have the option to avoid falling into the same pitfalls that they have and adapt the profitable strategies that they are practicing.

One of these strategies that are worth adopting is offshoring. As we’ve mentioned earlier, staffing firms have been relying on offshoring to gain competitive advantage. With its many benefits, including cutting recruitment costs, it has become the go-to solution for most recruitment issues.

It’s a strategy worth taking a closer look into. Hence, in this article, we are going to be focusing on what you can learn about offshore RPO from your competitors.

5 Things Your Competitors Can Teach You About Offshore RPO

“This increased competition comes the need for agencies to find new ways to raise their profile and position themselves as a go-to provider in their sectors. If they don’t, their competitors will catch up and eventually overtake them,” says Paul MacKenzie-Cummins, Managing Director of ClearlyPR.

Having a lot of competition is not always a bad thing. You can look at it from another perspective. Be optimistic about this situation and see it as an opportunity to grow your staffing firm further. However, remember that your end goal here is not to simply imitate what your competitors are already doing. You should also learn how to innovate and improve what they’re already practicing.

The Best And Worst Offshore RPO Locations

By studying the offshore RPO activities of your competitors, you can get accounts where offshore locations are lucrative and find out which are not. In general, ideal offshore locations are in developing countries that have more affordable labor costs. Offshore firms located in the Philippines and India are included in the top choices by staffing firms.

The Most and Least Efficient Recruitment Services To Offshore

Most recruitment services that are being offshored are the ones that can be efficiently done virtually. These services may include full life-cycle recruiting, resume sourcing, VMS recruiting support, recruitment admin support, and remote staffing.

Try and find out which offshore services your competitors are availing and whether it’s effective for them or not. That way, when you do decide to offshore, you can make confident decisions on which offshore recruitment services you are going to acquire.

The Risks Involved

There’s bound to be risks involved when you have an external recruitment team based offshore. There are differences in culture, communication styles, work ethics, and attitude towards resolving conflict.

There’s also the issue of data security. It may be true that the risks are no greater overseas than data being transferred from local office locations. However, legal protections in foreign countries are not the same. Some have more defined data security laws, while some offshore locations still have immature data security policies.

Study your competitors who have had difficulties in their offshore RPO transactions. Determine the risks they had to overcome and how they were able to overcome these risks. Thanks to the competitors that already tested the waters for you, you don’t have to venture in the offshore RPO business alone and lacking the technical know-how.

Busting the Misconceptions Surrounding Offshore RPO

There’re misconceptions involving offshore RPO. It’s been said that there’s a chance of you losing control over your recruitment process once you partner with an offshore RPO firm. Many HR executives are hesitant to partner with an offshore RPO firm because of this fear.

Another rumor is that offshore RPO replaces your internal recruiting team, causing a sort of atrophy to your core recruitment capabilities. Other rumors about offshore RPO include how it only works for large staffing firms, and that it’s only a temporary fad.

If you’re a skeptic, you don’t trust the word of the offshore RPO firm about how those rumors are untrue. You’re going to want to have concrete evidence. What better way to get this evidence than from your competitors who already tried engaging with an offshore RPO firm?

Whether offshore RPO firms of today are capable of working alongside your company to streamline your recruitment processes and improve your internal recruiting team, you can prove or disprove all this by studying your competitors’ experience with offshore RPO.

The Best Offshore Recruitment Technology

As we’ve mentioned before, in an offshore RPO transaction, recruitment activities are done virtually through the use of modern technology. It’s only reasonable that you put importance on the recruitment technologies that are being used in an offshore RPO transaction.

Again, take note of the effective recruitment technologies that your competitors are availing in their offshore RPO activities. Whether they use cloud computing to share data faster or have impenetrable data security, you need to find out which of these technologies are suitable for you once you engage with an offshore RPO firm.

Final Thoughts

In all kinds of business, there’s always going to be competition. It’s up to you how you’re going to turn the tides in your favor. If you’re an old player in the recruitment industry, you have the experience and knowledge the new recruitment agencies are lacking.

It’s still no excuse to get too confident and comfortable over your current position. Remember to innovate constantly and check up on your competitors so that you’re on the loop on the latest strategies and technologies.

Moreover, if you’re a budding recruitment agency, don’t be too intimidated by the standing firms. Instead, study the already established recruitment agencies, their methodologies, and services. Avoid the mistakes they had to experience and come up with better recruitment decisions than them.


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