RPO - Recruitment Process Outsourcing

Recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) is becoming an increasingly popular way for organisations to handle their talent acquisition. However, some common misconceptions persist about how RPO works and the benefits it can provide. In this post, we bust five myths about RPO.

Like with most things, there are pros and cons to using an RPO service to deliver your recruitment needs, however, some of these cons may not actually have as much of a negative impact as some may think.

Myth 1 – “RPO is Just Outsourced Recruiting

Reality: RPO is much more than throwing recruiting tasks at an external firm to deal with. A strategic RPO provider essentially serves as an integrated extension of your HR department. They take the time to thoroughly understand your employer brand, culture, and talent needs. From there, they leverage their expertise in candidate attraction, process design, recruitment marketing, candidate assessment, and developing EVPs to build a customised approach to attracting and retaining the best candidates for your unique needs.

A good RPO partner gets involved in the entire talent lifecycle, not just sourcing and screening. They help optimise your application process, revamp job descriptions, elevate your employer brand, identify talent pools, provide interview training, analyse hiring metrics, and much more. The efficiencies and expertise they bring allow HR leaders and their teams to focus on more strategic initiatives.

Myth 2: “RPO is Expensive

Reality: Evaluating RPO just on upfront costs is shortsighted. When designed effectively, RPO provides downstream savings that significantly improve your return on investment in recruitment. As RPO aims to improve process efficiency and reduce time-to-fill for jobs, it lowers your cost-per-hire. This results in significant savings in mid- and high-volume recruitment.

Additionally, RPO provides invaluable access to a team of experts and the latest recruitment methodologies and technologies, that in-house teams sometimes struggle to stay abreast of. The flexibility and scalability of RPO allows you to adjust spending based on hiring volume instead of carrying fixed recruitment costs. You’ll find, overall, that RPO delivers notable cost savings and resource optimisation.

Myth 3: “An External RPO Organisation Won’t Understand Our Specific Hiring Needs and Business Culture

Reality: Seasoned RPO providers know that understanding the nuances of your business is critical to creating an effective talent solution. They invest heavily in the onboarding and discovery process to immerse themselves in your employer brand, culture, talent demands, and business goals. This allows them to design truly customised strategies, including specialised assessment techniques and targeted recruitment marketing.

Effective RPO organisations also provide transparency throughout all their processes, metrics, and technology to foster collaboration. Look for providers who emphasise seamless integration and ongoing communication with your team. With mutual trust and transparency, an RPO provider can adapt quickly and deliver results to meet your hiring targets and needs.

Myth 4: “RPO Results in Lower Quality Hires

Reality: In truth, RPO often improves quality of hire, by leveraging expertise and recruitment best practices, with knowledge and experience gained by an RPO organisation across countless clients and industries. Rather than generalist approaches, RPOs create targeted recruitment pipelines optimised to find candidates, with the right skill sets, who will fit into your organisation and culture.

Their ability to tap into both active and passive talent pools allows access to candidates you might overlook. Advanced assessment techniques also help them screen for skills, cultural fit and potential, beyond just qualifications. Plus, effective RPO analytics help identify any issues, so they can continuously refine their recruitment activities, finding great quality candidates and deliver a great ROI for your organisation.

Myth 5: “RPO is Inflexible

Reality: If an RPO engagement is set up within a rigid structure or doesn’t include a comprehensive induction programme, it is very likely to fail. This is not an inherent flaw in the RPO model, just a lack of experience. A competent RPO organisation understands the need for ongoing flexibility and collaboration, right from the start of the project. Dynamic check-ins and open communication channels also allow adjustments to strategy as your needs change.

There are also a variety of RPO models which are offered, such as End-To-End, Project and On-Demand, which offer your organisation different levels of flexibility and scalability. With a foundation of transparency and trust, your RPO provider is able to provide the agility missing from most typical recruitment models.

We hope by debunking these common myths we’ve helped assure you that the many RPO benefits outweigh any adjustments you need to make.

Omni offers bespoke RPO solutions and support to your teams to help achieve your hiring goals. We also offer expertise in workforce planning, inclusive hiring and several training programmes, developed specifically for hiring managers and talent acquisition teams.

Click here to find out more about our RPO solutions (and other services) in our Omni Services Overview, or contact us for an informal discussion on how a RPO solution could support your hiring objectives and talent acquisition needs.

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