Recruiting is an HR function that is often regarded as necessary but time consuming and costly. It’s easy for HR to get bogged down with searching through countless resumes and reviewing hundreds of applications to find the few qualified candidates for a position. Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) is a service option that many companies turn to in an attempt to access a higher quality talent pool and shorten their time to hire. They may also take on other repetitive administrative tasks surrounding hiring.

RPO vendors advertise their services as saving money by increasing efficiency. Those that have well-designed tools and methodologies may indeed do just that for their clients. However, input and ownership on the part of the employer is essential for this type of service to be used strategically to meet specific business objectives. If an RPO firm is used simply for convenience because HR is tired of the hassle of hiring, the value of outsourcing will not be fully realized.

Employers generally have the option of outsourcing any portion of the recruiting process including:

  • Advertising open positions
  • Monitoring job boards
  • Networking to find candidates outside the internet
  • Collecting and reviewing resumes
  • Tracking applicants
  • Screening and assessing candidates
  • Running background checks and drug tests
  • Performing initial interviews
  • Sending offer letters
  • New hire transactional onboarding

The more responsibilities the RPO takes on, the more time HR has to focus on core business objectives. However, as you can see from the list above the recruitment/hiring process includes many areas that are highly sensitive from a compliance standpoint. An RPO can run afoul of EEOC rules, the ADA, and many other regulations if they are not following best practices.

New employee onboarding, as I’ve discussed before, is particularly difficult to navigate successfully using traditional tools and methods. So, if you do plan to outsource your transactional onboarding, it makes sense to take a close look at the software and processes your RPO vendor is using. If they can’t offer the level of consistent compliance enforcement provided by our Universal Onboarding product (and the ability to conform to your unique business rules), it may be best to keep this function in-house.

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