Essential questions you should ask a recruitment agency

As the UK economy continues to grow, there are a greater number of job vacancies, as well as an increasing number of recruitment agencies ready and willing to supply you with candidates to fill these vacancies.

How can you distinguish between these agencies? How can you spot the differences between those that are reputable and those out to waste your time?

If you have not previously dealt with a particular agency, you should be prepared to screen them with a number of pertinent questions. This should fill you with a greater sense of confidence that they can source the right candidate for you.

Some questions you could ask include:

Is the agency a specialist in my industry?

Does the recruitment agency have previous experience with companies such as yourself, along with many success stories to show this? Getting this information initially will ensure a greater fit between your business and the agency, providing reassurance that the company is knowledgeable about the roles you recruit for. To add to this, finding a recruitment consultant who knows your industry well will allow both parties to work more efficiently.

Does the agency hold a professional accreditation? 

There are a number of professional bodies in the UK that ensure that recruitment agencies work to a high standard. These bodies include the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, and the Association for Professional Staffing Companies. If the recruitment agency you are working with is governed by a professional body such as these, you can be assured that they are experienced and competent. CK Group, for example, holds ISO 9001 and ISO 27001 accreditations which are recognised worldwide.

What is your candidate attraction methodology?

What job boards does the agency use to find candidates that might be suitable for your roles? This will give you an idea as to how many candidates the recruitment agency holds within their database, as well as whether they are able to source the best talent for you. CK Group has a mature network built over almost 30 years, meaning that we have a strong, substantial personal network that is of excellent value to our clients.

What screening process do you have in place?

A stringent screening process is particularly important within recruitment. It should ensure that all candidates have their qualifications and relevant references checked, are eligible to work in the UK and have their personal ID verified before they are presented to you.

What selection process do you use?

Remember there is a difference. You should know how the recruiter is going to select appropriate candidates for you. How are they going to interview the candidates and what is their selection criteria for your roles? 

Do you possess a clear equality and diversity policy?

Your recruiter should be fully inclusive and meet all legal and regulatory requirements.

Can you provide testimonials from other clients?

Testimonials are one of the most telling aspects of an agency’s ability to fulfil your needs. Gaining access to these will give you more confidence in your agency that they are as competent and successful as they claim. CK Group have a trusted track record thanks to our long heritage, meaning that we are a safe pair of hands to be placed within. 

What are your Terms of Business?

You should agree the terms of business with your agency before commencing any work – both parties should be on the same page about how the partnership will unfold.

It is vital that you work in partnership with a recruitment agency that you trust and know has the expertise to source suitable candidates for your business. Spending time sourcing suitable agencies will mean that you are able to build a long-term strategic partnership, reducing stress and increasing the success of recruitment campaigns.

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