When you don’t have the time to look through hundreds of candidates to make a hire, a contract recruiter can help you find the right one for the job. And along with a human recruiter, you can also use software solutions to keep track of the hiring process and communicate with your recruiter.
Zoho Recruit is one of those tools. It works to help recruiters find candidates that meet your company’s requirements. We’ll recommend a few others, too, in case you need more specialized recruiting solutions for your business.
A contract recruiter is someone who specializes in finding the right temporary, contract, or project employees for your business. This article will show you step by step how to hire a contract recruiter that benefits your business using Zoho Recruit.
Step-By-Step Guide to Hiring a Contract Recruiter
Step 1: Determine Your Hiring Needs
Most contract recruiters have particular industry specialties, like IT, legal, or healthcare. You want one who knows what to look for in your field.
Determining your hiring needs in advance helps you get more organized as you start your search for a contract recruiter.
You should have a thorough and complete job description on hand, along with information about your company, the position’s hours, salary, benefits, and other job-specific information. Know what skills the candidates need and what the recruiter should look for in their search.
You don’t have to work with every recruiter you interview about the job requirements. Still, having them ready to go helps you hire the right person the first time. As much as you want the best candidate for the position, what you need is a recruiter who knows how to parse through candidates and identify those who will fit both your open position and your company as a whole.
Each position has different needs. Whether you go with a firm or a freelancer, knowing what those things are will keep your interviews consistent and ensure you work with a recruiter who understands you and your business.
Step 2: Find the Right Firm
When you’re checking out contract recruiting firms, look for ones that have specific qualities that match your business.
A good recruiter:
- Has a deep understanding of your market/industry.
- Understands the jargon and skills needed for a candidate to succeed in the role.
- Has strong relationship management skills.
- Understands your hiring process.
- Can make recommendations on platforms to use and assist with job descriptions if needed.
The recruiter you choose should know what’s happening in your industry. That makes them better able to find high-quality candidates and fill your position faster. They should also be able to predict the market events for the next three to six months. They need to understand what hard and soft skills will work best in various positions in the industry, as that helps them narrow down candidates quickly.
Recruiters should also be proactive and actively work to bring in candidates and continue until you fill the position while keeping you updated.
In addition to the screening a recruiter does to pre-qualify a candidate, they also must understand all steps of your hiring process and be able to walk the candidate through them and help prepare them at each stage. This is also part of their relationship management skills.
Step 3: Collect Information and Ask Questions
Before hiring a contract recruiter or agency, you should dig deeper and find out more about them and their work. Just as you would ask interview questions to a potential employee, the same goes for hiring a recruiter.
Make sure you cover these basic questions before you commit:
- Have you hired in this industry before?
- Do you know our competitors?
- What is your success rate with placements?
- What is your rate, and how do you charge?
Having this information alone can tell you whether the person is right for you before you even get into additional details.
Ask about their approach and see what it works or doesn’t work with how you want your candidate search to go.
You also need your recruiter to understand you, your business, and the kind of people you want to hire. If they don’t, it is just as big a downfall as working with a recruiter who knows nothing about your industry or has a low success rate.
Step 4: Communicate Your Hiring Needs
Remember how we talked about not telling everyone you interview about your in-depth hiring needs? Here’s where you do want to do that.
Take the information you gathered earlier and talk about it with your chosen recruiter. See if they understand the requirements and can recommend ways to help you find the strongest possible candidates in your field.
It’s a good sign if they’re willing to spend time getting to know your company, too. Look for someone who has the technical knowledge and understanding but is also compatible with your business’s culture.
If you don’t click at this step, this recruiter might not be the one for you. Move on and find someone else.
Step 5: Sign A Contract
These contracts will look different based on the company, firm, and recruiter. You might work with a firm or a single freelance recruiter. Large and small businesses also have varying contract requirements.
Make sure you have measures in place to protect your business and that cover the agreement. Some of these measures might include:
- Non-disclosure agreements (NDA): A non-disclosure agreement protects your company. It says the recruiter can’t share trade secrets and other confidential information from the client company. An NDA ensures that recruiters don’t share this information with other companies or candidates before they’re hired.
- Non-solicitation agreements (NSA): This agreement says that the recruiter won’t solicit your employees for hiring by another company. Their job is to hire for you, and an NSA ensures that they don’t contact your employees—including the one they placed—for future positions outside your company. The only exception here is if an employee contacts the recruiter first, though the requirements in these cases vary based on where you live.
- Pricing: The contract should spell out the terms of pricing. How much will you pay the recruiter or firm? How often? How will you make the payments?
Contract requirements will vary between recruiters and companies. If the recruiter contract doesn’t sit right with you, you can request changes to the agreement or work with someone else.
Step 6: Start Hiring with an ATS
You want to work with a recruiter who involves you in the process. That means getting updates beyond simply knowing that they’re contacting candidates. After all, this process can last months, depending on the level of expertise you need and the type of position you need filled.
Using an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) can keep your search cohesive. It shows you and the recruiter the progress on the search, where applicants are in the process, and other relevant information.
Zoho Recruit is one of the top ATS platforms available. It’s affordable and offers three packages:
- Standard: $25 per user per month
- Professional: $50 per user per month
- Enterprise: $75 per user per month
The Standard package gives you candidate sourcing and tracking, resume management, and integrations. That’s enough for some companies, but others need more.
The Professional tier upgrades you with Zia Candidate Matching, portal management, and candidate assessments. It also has resume management to show you the best candidates in your pool. Plus, advanced reports analytics and forecasts show your search metrics and how you can improve them.
Enterprise has everything in the Professional package. It also has more features like a client and vendor portal, custom functions, custom roles and profiles, and autoresponders to make your search more efficient.
Zoho Recruit shows your job postings and hiring progress on each opening with statuses like not started, in progress, and complete. It also displays the name of the teammate working on hiring.
The software offers pre-screening assessments and other tools that let you find candidates fast. It makes it easy to schedule interviews, send offers, and sign hiring documents.
With everyone on the same page, Zoho Recruit creates a seamless hiring process and builds a relationship between you and your recruiter.
3 Top Benefits of Hiring a Contract Recruiter
Hiring a contract recruiter can help you grow your business faster with the right people. Here are a few things that happen for your business when you hire the right recruiter.
Brings in Qualified Candidates
By simply posting a job description, you don’t always reach the people you need. Recruiters are proactive and contact people outside that reach who have experience in your field.
These people might not even be looking for a job. However, when a recruiter tells them you’re looking for someone like them, they might apply and be the great fit you wouldn’t have found otherwise.
Hiring a recruiter means you can get new experts for your company. That translates to business growth, more innovations, better ideas, and more recognition in your industry.
A recruiter knows how to find candidates who offer those qualities and bring them to you.
Saves Managers Time
As a manager or business owner, you might not have the time to seek and contact candidates. Leaving that to a recruiter allows you to spend time on other projects.
When you can devote attention to other areas of your company and trust someone else to find candidates, you can keep your business growing at the same rate. You don’t have to take time away from other tasks, and you avoid letting any area of your company suffer while you search for people to fill your team.
Fills Positions Faster
You need a complete and capable team to keep your business running. It can take months or even longer to fill a position when you’re only posting it on job boards, especially if it’s more specialized. And that doesn’t even account for the time it takes a manager to look at every resume, try to screen the ones that look good, and then go through the interview process with the ones left.
A contract recruiter knows who to target as candidates and how to bring them in. Their approach cuts the time you spend searching and fills positions faster, avoiding delays with projects and growth. That means you grow more quickly, reach more people, start new projects, and incorporate new ideas sooner.
3 Biggest Challenges with Hiring a Contract Recruiter & How to Troubleshoot Them
Even with a contract recruiter, you can see questionable candidate quality, may have trouble fielding candidate questions, and there are no guarantees you’ll find the person you’re looking for. Here’s how you can prevent and fix these issues.
Quality of Candidates
Not every recruiter will bring you the type of candidates you want for your business. Without suitable candidates, you don’t get the full benefit of having hired a recruiter in the first place.
To ensure you get the best candidates possible, use an ATS like Zoho Recruiter. This software helps with resume management and pre-screening assessments, and has other features to help recruiters and managers sort through candidates and hire the best ones.
Part of solving this problem comes with doing in-depth research and interviewing your recruiter. That way, you know they have the experience in their work and your industry.
Getting involved in the recruiting process can also help. You want to leave the recruiting up to your recruiter as much as possible, but knowing who they’re reaching out to and why can open better communication and understanding between you.
Zoho Recruiter helps you do that by giving you a look at the process and the progress your recruiter makes.
Even recruiters in your field might not understand everything about your specific business. That can lead to awkward situations where a candidate asks your recruiter questions, and the recruiter can’t answer them.
That doesn’t give a great impression of your company. You want candidates to be informed when applying to your company. While getting a specialist recruiter helps avoid this problem, sometimes candidates have more in-depth questions specific to your company.
Give the recruiter all the information they’ll need to field questions. Keep communication open with them, so they feel comfortable asking for the necessary answers.
Zoho Recruiter helps you manage this type of information. It has custom career pages and places you can put this type of information so that both you and your recruiter can access it. It creates more cohesive communication to keep everyone on the same page.
Even hiring the best recruiter doesn’t guarantee you’ll find someone with the experience and skills you need. Usually, a recruiter will help you fill positions faster, but it might still take longer than you expect, especially with more technical or specialized jobs.
Aside from being patient, you can make sure you and your recruiter have everything you need to hire the best candidate. That means offering enough information about the job, the type of person you want to hire, your industry, expertise, duties, and other pertinent information.
Schedule time to talk about the position. Make sure you do everything you need to facilitate the recruiter’s job.
While these measures still don’t guarantee you’ll find the exact right person, they do help you get one step closer.
Other Options for How to Hire a Contract Recruiter
This post talked about how Zoho Recruiter can help you through the process of hiring and working with a contract recruiter. But what if you have needs it can’t fulfill?
Here are a few more recommendations for ATS software and when you might want to choose them instead:
- Bullhorn ATS & CRM: Bullhorn works best if you need a combination CRM and ATS. It lets you manage applicants while keeping up your customer relationship status and boosting your company’s reputation. It enables you to keep all your tasks in one convenient space.
- Jobvite: Jobvite is an excellent resource for using referrals to get more candidates. It also offers quick automatic candidate ranking and screening for when you need to hire someone fast.
- CEIPAL ATS: CEIPAL has plenty of AI features so that you can automate more tasks without losing quality. It also offers lots of customization features to help you tailor your job search to your company and the candidates you want to reach. It’s best for employers who don’t have time to sweat the small stuff but still want a specific type of candidate.