How outsourcing might be ruining your graduate recruitment

  March 07, 2017

One of the most influential factors in your organisation's success is the talent within it. Without the best, brightest and most engaged individuals working for you, your business will struggle at a fundamental level to make much progress. It's therefore important to have the right people in the right roles at every level of your business, and it's important to invest in exceptional talent, which is why a lot of organisations of every size elect to hire graduates. As highly educated young individuals they are bright, full of passion, and come with a host of new and innovative ideas to help your business thrive. But....this is only true if you are able to hire people who actually want to be there and share the same values as your organisation. Without this synchronicity you are likely to become one of the many organisations who witness a quarter of their graduate talent pool disappear within a year.

One of the most common methods companies use in order to recruit their bright, young graduates is to outsource their recruitment needs to the experts - providing a detailed brief on what they require of the candidates, and then entrusting the recruitment agency to identify and select the most appropriate candidates for interview. Theoretically this should be a fool-proof approach, but the difficulty with graduates is that they often have very similar looking resumes, and trying to identify the ones with the right values, attitude and competencies from a brief, templated CV is virtually impossible. This is especially true when outsourcing the work to an agency, as while they may have the brief, they don't have the intimate understanding of your business that is required in order to recommend the very best people. Using this approach it is often only at interview stage that the business can really assess the suitability of the candidates being put forward, and at this point, so much time, effort and money has been invested in trying to find the right person, that typically someone from the recommended pool will be selected, even if deep down it doesn't feel right.

With a shrinking number of graduate roles being offer by organisations, it has never been more essential for both the business and the candidates, that the right people are recruited. In the past where a large cohort of graduates may have been hired, loosing one or two in the course of the placement may have been no big deal. But with less being taken on board in the first place, should any choose to leave within the year (as many currently do) it could have extensive repercussions on the business, and will likely mean having to re-recruit, wasting further time, effort and money.

 The challenge is that many organisations don't have the resources in-house to effectively recruit their graduate population as it does tend to be a fairly long process. But the poor output that is occurring when electing to outsource the task is likely to have a negative impact on the business in the long term.

Our aim at Happy Work is to put the control back in employers' hands without any significant added time expenditure. We have created a fully validated set of assessments which allows employers to dictate exactly what it is they require from their graduate candidates on a range of measures, not just degree and work experience. Our job board measures recent university graduates for 43 different types of behaviour, as well as how the candidate works with numbers and words. It empowers employers to clearly specify who they want working for them, and accurately matches the specified competencies with suitable candidates within the portal. By alerting you to suitable candidates we want to help you retain control of your graduate recruitment without having to spend hours slaving over identical looking applications or paying someone outside of the business to do this (probably inaccurately) for you. We believe graduate recruitment needs to change – it needs to be easier and more robust in order for businesses and graduates to find a better match, and we are working hard to make it happen.