Firstly, a declaration of interest, I work in recruitment to recruitment, having previous worked in agency recruitment for many years, so I am without doubt heavily biased. I would also like to point out that I am not suggesting internal recruiters aren’t capable – often the complete opposite is true. There are many occasions where internal recruitment teams and agencies work hand in hand, this a great model. My contention is that companies which “ban” agencies to pursue a 100% internal recruitment strategy will struggle.

Born in a different Labour Market:
Much of the RPO/IR growth was between 2008 – 2010. Back then it made more practical sense. There was a huge number of talented individuals on the market across a number of sectors looking for jobs, primarily because it was an incredibly unstable time. Global FTSE equivalent sized companies were disappearing , redundancies were common place, therefore finding experienced individuals was a far more straight forward exercise. Today the reverse is true.

It’s an unrealistic proposition:
I am fortunate enough to see first-hand the amount of resource and skill our hiring customers put into finding candidates for their clients. They have teams of many people, more niche than I thought possible, with researchers mapping out markets, tracking careers, supported by long term networks in a given market. In internal recruitment this is virtually impossible unless you have a huge Internal recruitment team. Typically an internal recruitment manager will cover at least 5 or 6 separate job verticals, therefore logistically, its is not achievable for them to network to anywhere near the same level of detail as their agency counterparts. Therefore unless superhuman, it is difficult to credibly argue they can find the same caliber of candidates on an going basis, not because don’t have the ability, but because the don’t have the time.

It doesn’t offer enough to candidates:
Whether you an Accountant, a Business Analyst, a Clinical Research Analyst or a Java developer, if you can be tempted to consider other opportunities, would one be enough? Agency recruiters can offer candidates a broad spectrum of opportunity – size of business, personality of hiring manager, role scope, this is simply because they have more opportunities. For internal recruiters, they only have the one opportunity to discuss, therefore is sellers market – does this really offer enough.

Cost Savings are misleading:
There are cost savings to internal recruitment, this is why it exists. But these cost savings are often only released at the point of hire. A friend of mine is a sales manager for software house which “bans” recruiters. They have one internal recruiter covering a 250 man business. They have 3 unfilled sales roles – now for over 6 months. Surely the loss of sales revenue, over stretch on the existing employees, loss of client contact equates to more than a £10,000 recruitment fee? My friend often says he see’s CV’s from recruiters who would be (at least on paper) perfect – but he can’t interview them.
You leave your business exposed:
More often than not, a recruiter will split his or her market in two, companies to recruit for, companies to headhunt from. If your message to the market is we will never use a recruiter, which one of these two categories is more likely?

There is value to 3rd party consultancy
I often think the broader value of recruiters is underestimated. Take the example an experienced Middle Office Banking recruiter. Will this consultant know more about Product control then a Product controller? – clearly not. But they will know more about product control recruitment then anyone else – yes – because this is all they do. They will know which companies offer counter offers, which companies underpay, which teams are unsettled. This can only be released if you spend all day everyday working a market.
Once again I would like to state I am not saying there is no place of internal recruitment. There clearly is, and this can often work very effectively, and many internal recruiters are the excellent at what they do. But “banning” agencies to me is madness.

    After starting my job search I was recommended Tom via linkedin. Throughout the process Tom and Eddie both kept me up to date with as much information as possible and understood what I was seeking within a role. There bespoke approach is extremely refreshing and although we did not end up sourcing a role as I accepted another offer, I would not hesitate to recommend Tom and his team to anyone seeking a new role and want to speak to someone who will give them a clear and honest approach to the search.