Creating a successful working relationship with an Offshore Recruitment Service (ORS) provider can be planned and structured to your advantage.
As we have said before: If you knew with a high probability of certainty that a proposed strategy would result in your company acquiring more qualified, interested and available candidates quickly and at a lower price, then I am sure you would try it.
Like most activities in business, the concept can be simple but the execution can be difficult. So learning from common mistakes identified over the years makes a lot of sense - mistakes in planning, structure, communication, and philosophy that have prevented benefits being obtained.
Related: Offshore Outsourcing Success Factors
To prepare this article we’ve spoken with IMS People and practitioners in the UK and the USA to collate the top mistakes made when setting up an ORS environment.
1. Objectives and Planning
Why are you considering outsourcing? There does need to be clarity around the objective so that all decisions can be made with this objective in mind. It may change over time, but a solid foundation is required to commence.
2. Determine your desired ROI before you start
To be a viable business model, offshore recruitment must produce a measurable return on your investment. In recruitment, ROI targets are usually easy to identify. Examples include making a specific placement, delaying or reducing internal hiring, or handing off important but not critical recruitment functions to your offshore team. But if you don’t do this ahead of time you will find yourself making emotional decisions rather than factual decisions when faced with the inevitable tough periods in the process and in the relationship.
3. Measure, Measure, Measure
Recruitment Agencies are usually good at determining successful metrics and putting in place systems to measure activity. But for some reason when working with a recruitment partner this often falls away. At the outset of the engagement, jointly determine how to measure progress and success. Agree upon what activities will be tracked and by whom, and clarify in what manner and with what frequency reporting data will be generated and delivered.
4. The offshore team are an extended arm
While your offshore team is not directly employed by you, are located a long way away, and possibly come with different skills and experience, they must be treated as an extended part of your team. You want them involved in your successes and failures, you want them to “wear your shirt” when they start their day.
How do you ensure this? It must go beyond token efforts. For example, create an equal playing field with the onshore and offshore teams having equal access to software, database and systems needed for recruiting. Make sure the offshore team is integrated into the process so their skills are utilised and no feedback is missed.
5. Select the right Internal Champion
Not only do you want to select the right offshore recruitment partner, but you also want to assign responsibility for overseeing the project from your side to a senior-level employee within your organisation who is vested in the project’s success. This is important – not the boss (they are too busy), and not someone too junior. This project needs visibility and seniority within the recruitment agency. It needs to be, and needs to be seen to be, a serious executive-sponsored activity.
6. Train and Monitor, Train and Monitor
Training isn’t just something you do at the beginning of the relationship. Like you do for your onshore teams, training is an ongoing process that has both planned and reactionary components. In addition to the big-ticket items about how you do your business, reinforcement and correction of successes and issues that arise is essential.
That only happens when there is strong engagement from both sides. Positive monitoring of results will identify successes and shortfalls so there can be a continuous focus on reinforcement of positive activity and identification of the cause of shortfalls to work with your offshore leaders to rectify.
7. Visit the offshore partner facilities
Finally, it is important to build the bonds, to build the personal relationships. So much more can be achieved in a few days of face to face training than a month of skype calls. Visiting the office will:
- add a face to the name
- build credibility that both companies are serious and ready to deliver
- help the client understand the offshore team’s strengths, capabilities and expertise
- Builds confidence that if there are issues the team will manage, or if an additional service is required the team can take it up
HHMC Global is a customer of, and a partner with, IMS People, a leading Offshore Recruitment Services organisation providing services to recruitment agencies globally. For further information contact: Rod Hore from Australia; Julieann Fouad from UK; or Jack Unroe from the USA.
IMS People has been named in the list of the world’s best outsourcing service providers in 2017 by IAOP