Are recruitment agencies able to deliver on quality financial resources?

Are recruitment agencies able to deliver on quality financial resources?

Many people in senior HR positions agree that one of the most challenging – and simultaneously rewarding – aspects of their job is finding new candidates to fill key positions within the business.

We’re all familiar with the frustrations of sifting through hundreds of CVs that are completely unsuited to the job you advertised for, or pinning your hopes on that candidate who seemed perfect on paper, only to discover that the real-life fit is far from ideal.

You may start off looking for the candidate yourself. You advertise in a few key places and wait while the résumés pour in. After days of fruitless interviewing, you decide to turn to a recruitment agency. However, how sure can you be that the company you appoint is drawing in the best candidates for the position? After all, you are more au fait with the nuances of the job description than they are. And the recruitment agency is driven by what could become conflicting interests: their own deadlines and commission they could earn for placing as many people as possible for as long as possible.

As the commercial hub of the country and the economic capital of the continent, there are several recruitment agencies in Johannesburg at your disposal. You have a choice between large, generalised placement companies and smaller, more niche operations. But all recruitment agencies in Johannesburg face certain constraints.

Recruitment agencies’ biggest struggles

Some of the difficulties faced by recruitment agencies in Johannesburg align with those faced by similar companies around the globe. In its 2013 recruitment trends survey, asked recruiters from all seven continents what their biggest challenge was.

The most frequent response (30% of respondents) said that was that there was a lack of skilled or quality candidates to fill positions.  This is an all too familiar refrain for local recruiters, who face a workforce that was largely denied from meaningful skills training for decades.

Following this, 24% of respondents said they faced a reduction in recruitment budgets. They were tasked with finding someone to achieve the same job but with less money to do it. This constraint is especially true in the current environment in South Africa. Companies approaching recruitment agencies in Johannesburg face consumer confidence at its lowest point since 2008, sluggish GDP growth and low manufacturing figures. By necessity, companies like yours need to get more done with less.

The third biggest challenge faced by recruiters was high competition for talent from other employers. With the current local emphasis on black economic empowerment (BEE), this difficulty has become especially true in South Africa when it comes to permanent placements. Recruiters complain that high quality candidates who meet BEE criteria are in constant threat of head-hunting, and subsequently demand ever-increasing salaries that eventually become out of kilter with industry benchmarks.

The survey also posed another telling question: which roles do recruiters have the most difficulty recruiting for? The largest portion of respondents — almost one in four — said that they battled the most to recruit senior management positions.

The survey responses revealed what could be an argument for the use of specialised consulting companies rather than generalised recruitment agencies in Johannesburg, especially when it comes to filling niche and senior roles.

So how could a specialised consulting company assist? A financial consulting company focuses on finding and placing the right financial executives in the right positions for the right amount of time. They operate differently to recruitment agencies in Johannesburg. And interestingly, their unique structure and emphasis means they are positioned to efficiently circumventing some of a recruiters’ biggest difficulties.

First of all, specialised financial consulting companies have no shortage of skilled candidates. If you are looking for a financial professional, be it at CFO, financial manager or project accountant level, they will have someone already screened and suitable to fill your need. They draw from a unique and growing pool of people who are looking for an alternative to full time corporate positions or have become more readily available due to marketplace realities.

For the same reason, you need not worry about competition for your professional from other employers. The professionals in the consulting practice have joined them because of lifestyle reasons and don’t get embroiled in pitching your opportunity against that of any other entity in a bid to get the highest rate.

Thirdly, the consulting company should understand your budget constraints. Instead of pushing a full time placement like most recruitment agencies in Johannesburg would, they will advocate only using the professional for the time you actually need him or her. In essence, they can help you achieve your goals on a smaller budget.

Lastly, financial consulting companies succeed where generalised recruitment agencies in Johannesburg battle the most, in the struggle to fill senior management positions. Their professionals have the appropriate accounting qualifications and years of corporate experience. In other words, the Finance Team associates that come from senior management positions and are ready to step into yours. Contact us here.

Leave your details for an obligation-free conversation regarding your specific needs.

Anton Apps PAG Kelly Group SET Recruitment Spencer Stuart Accountants on Call Network Recruitment Communicate DAV Robert Walters FD Centre Kelly Temp Kelly Contract Kelly Personnel


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