Knowing Your Agency Representative Better Will Enhance Your Staffing Experience

Businesswomen Shaking HandsWhen working with staffing agencies, companies have a pre-established set of expectations, the staffing agency representatives should know all about my organization, my hiring preferences and what we do and do not want in potential candidates. While these expectations are perfectly valid, too often a lack of understanding beyond these expectations precludes staffing agencies from doing the best job possible.

To create truly optimal searches and generate the best candidates, staffing agency representatives should be able to act as a knowledgeable and informed extension of the client. But does your staffing agency representative know you well enough to perform to your expectations when it comes to screening and candidate identification?

By forging better relationships with their staffing agency representatives, businesses can enhance the quality of their candidates. Thus, it is important not only to expect the agency representative to get to know you and your firm, but also to reciprocate by getting to know your agency representative well enough to build a completely full-circle relationship, instead of a single-directional one. Without making the effort to get to know your agency representative well, your firm may eventually suffer from the disconnect, as the staffing agency representative will have only limited knowledge of you and your firm.

During registration interviews of candidates, determining the depth and scope of required skills and experience levels is essential to meeting our client’s hiring needs. Yet, a skilled agency representative will also take the time and effort to learn about the overall personality of the candidate, recognizing that the client will have to work with that individual on an ongoing basis. Speaking with a candidate one time will not accomplish this goal. Instead, the agency representative must conduct multiple conversations and make contact several times in order to get past the typical “introductory facade” and see a clear, comprehensive picture of the candidate’s more relaxed, day-to- day personality beyond his or her “first impression” mode.

The same level of time and effort should be expended between the client and staffing agency representative. This will enhance the staffing agency’s ability to generate an optimal match between client and candidate. Additionally, there is great value to be gained by both parties by exchanging personal information.

Though conversations should always remain professional, this peek into personality leads to better understanding and leads to the creation of a strong client/representative relationship and a greater likelihood that a perfect match of candidate with client will be made.

Learn a little more about your agency representative and reap the benefits of better matches he or she will make for you in the future.

Elizabeth Parks-Landry is the Executive Director of the New Orleans office of Special Counsel.

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