How to Choose a Staffing Agency: A Complete Guide

When your company needs to add talent, engaging your HR team in a staffing selection process is the usual go-to option, but this effort is typically costly and sometimes risky as well. What if a candidate who is hired does not stay with the company for long or ends up not being the right fit? The resources spent recruiting, onboarding, and training them become a sunk cost.

On the other hand, partnering with the right staffing agency helps mitigate these risks, saving you money. An experienced staffing services provider offers many significant benefits, including finding the right candidates faster than many internal processes. They grow to understand your organization and its culture. As a result, candidates ultimately are a better fit for your team.

If interested in building a partnership with a local light industrial staffing agency, check out this useful guide. We will cover how to best determine your staffing needs for temporary or direct-hire employees. Additionally, we will explore what attributes to look for in a potential staffing agency partner. You can leverage these insights to optimize your company’s hiring initiatives like never before!

Determine Your Staffing Needs

Before considering a partnership with a staffing agency, you will first need to craft a staffing strategy. This includes determining both short-term workforce needs and long-term hiring projections. Having this information at the ready helps you make an informed decision on the right staffing services provider.

Additionally, you should spend some time creating an ideal candidate profile for your organization and open positions. It is important to note that this effort differs somewhat from writing a job description. Try to adopt a general approach focused on cultural fit and high-level compatibility with your business processes. Again, this effort informs the process of finding a staffing agency that’s a great partner for your organization.

Next, we will explore some of the basic talent acquisition services provided by most staffing agencies. You should compare this information with your business’s current long and short-term hiring plans. Doing so ultimately helps your company choose an agency compatible with your approach to hiring talent.

Temporary Staffing Services

Many employment agencies focus on providing businesses with temporary or contingent workers. Whenever your business needs to close a skills gap or meet an urgent need, onboarding temporary workers is a great option. A staffing agency offering these services meets this need at a fraction of the cost compared to internal processes. Not surprisingly, your business adds the necessary talent much more quickly than it does using an internal process.

Additionally, temporary workers provide other significant cost-saving benefits compared to hiring a permanent employee. For example, your business adds the talent it needs without the additional training costs of a full-time employee. When the project is completed, the contingent worker simply moves on to their next temporary assignment.

Temp-to-Hire Services

A staffing agency offering temp-to-hire talent acquisition services also provides meaningful benefits to businesses. When using a traditional approach for a full-time hire, a new employee might not be the ideal fit. New hires with this cultural misalignment may quickly begin looking for another opportunity, wasting the time and resources spent hiring them.

Partnering with a staffing agency offering temp-to-hire services helps mitigate these risks. Your company gets to see how a candidate interacts with your current team. If they make a positive impact on your team and reflect your culture, you can extend them a permanent place at your company. This option lets you make the right hiring decision on a more consistent basis.

Direct Hire Services

Finally, most staffing agencies offer direct hire services. This traditional staffing model becomes less risk-prone once your staffing agency partner understands your ideal candidate profile and company culture. As such, they only present candidates with the right fit as well as the skills and experience detailed in your job requirements.

At the same time, staffing agencies also boast well-honed and efficient staffing processes. This lets your business add the talent it needs faster than your internal HR team, considering that oftentimes, the top candidates only remain on the market for a few weeks. Partnering with a local staffing agency raises your chances of hiring these exceptional candidates before the competition.

What to Look for When Choosing a Staffing Agency

Simply put, staffing agencies are not all created equal. Each one boasts a variety of capabilities and experience, helping you differentiate between talent acquisition service providers. Understanding the various criteria and identifying the best agencies helps your company choose the right one.

Let’s analyze some of the most important factors to look for when vetting a potential staffing agency partner. You can use this information to create a rating system to decide which one offers the highest compatibility with your business. 

Assess the Staffing Agency’s Experience and Reputation

When choosing a staffing agency, it is important to research the experience level and industry reputation of each. You’ll want to partner with an agency that has strong experience and multiple connections among the talent community. A deep network ensures your agency partner provides a robust candidate pool, making it easier to source candidates whenever necessary.

You may want to ask for a client list and references to connect with those companies and get insights into agency performance. Also, it can be helpful to reach out to your own professional network and see if any of your connections previously worked with a staffing agency. If one of your connections had a good experience, it is worth looking into the staffing agency they utilized.

Find a Staffing Agency That Specializes in Your Industry

For best results, it is critical to partner with a staffing agency that has significant experience in your business’ industry sector. This ensures the agency’s recruiters understand the specific nature of your company’s work. Additionally, it provides confidence that the staffing agency understands the typical candidate skills and experience needed for your business’ open positions. An agency without this relevant background might struggle to find the right talent for you.

Does the Staffing Agency Use Technology to Accelerate Recruitment Efforts?

Modern technology innovations continue to optimize the hiring process for staffing agencies. Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning especially improve efficiency when rating candidate resumes or handling initial communication with applicants. Additionally, many top staffing agencies use applicant tracking systems (ATS) powered by AI, which helps these agencies source and place candidates faster than ever.

Vetting each potential staffing agency partner’s approach to using technology to aid their candidate recruiting processes can be helpful. If your company wants access to talented professionals faster than your competition, working with a technology-focused staffing agency becomes critical. There’s no better choice to quickly close a skills gap or add talent to complete an important project than partnering with a staffing agency that utilizes cutting-edge technology.

What Screening Process Does the Staffing Agency Use?

When onboarding candidates without using a staffing agency, you run the risk that they are not entirely honest about their skills and backgrounds. When candidates are dishonest, your business productivity can decline. This is why it is important to ask about the screening process when partnering with a staffing agency to ensure that these risks are mitigated through your partnership.

Things to ask about include their policies for background and reference checks for any candidate they present. Additionally, it is good to inquire about any guarantees they provide to their clients on candidate quality.

Ensure the Staffing Agency is Compliant with Labor Laws

Regulatory compliance remains an important consideration for any provider of staffing services. This is especially the case if your business employs a contingent workforce spanning multiple jurisdictions. Managing a wide variety of laws and regulations can be quite a challenge for any HR team. Your business can incur fines or tax penalties for being out of compliance.

Make sure your chosen staffing partner deeply understands labor laws where you do business and hire talent. This is another important topic of exploration when researching staffing agencies. Similar to the other criteria differentiating agencies, reach out to your professional network for opinions. Choosing a partner you can trust should be your ultimate goal.

Look No Further than Doherty Staffing Solutions, The Top Staffing Agency in Minnesota

When searching for an excellent staffing agency, look no further than the team at Doherty Staffing Solutions. As one of the area’s top suppliers of light industrial talent, we provide the exceptional candidates your business needs. Schedule a meeting with us to discuss your current hiring strategies.