Feels Like A Trap

Staffing Companies: A Necessary Evil?

It’s easy to understand the initial hesitation many job seekers feel towards staffing companies. When you’re eager to find a good job, an intermediary between you and potential employers can feel like another hurdle. Likewise, an employer may think using a third party is an extra step. This sentiment often stems from several common misconceptions about the role of staffing firms in the job search process. But does a staffing firm slow down hiring or speed the process up? How does a staffing expert bring value to their clients and job candidates?

Let’s explore typical reservations and then examine staffing firms’ work and the value they add to the process.

Common Job Seeker Misconceptions

Because work consumes so much of our lives, what, where, who, why, and ‘how much I will make’ all matter greatly; work isn’t simply a business transaction; it directly impacts the quality of life. If you haven’t found a supportive staffing company relationship, these doubts may be running in your mind.

  • Staffing companies are merely resume collectors that stand gatekeeping between people and their dream jobs, adding unnecessary complexity to the hiring process.
  • Staffing agencies are only interested in filling positions as quickly as possible, prioritizing speed over the quality of the match between job seekers and companies.
  • This staffing recruiter will push me into roles where I won’t be happy, or I’ll be stuck in a position without opportunity for growth or a permanent position.

How a Staffing Firm Brings Value to Job Candidates

The best staffing companies build long-term relationships with people. When you’re ready to change roles, an agency recruiter can be a powerful ally. Recruiters are usually very well cued into employers’ details by their team’s account managers. They can share insights about a company’s culture, departmental teams, and projects and even give you a heads-up about jobs that may not be advertised publicly. When you openly share your goals, skills, and desires with a recruiter, they can provide a level of match-making that goes beyond a job board or application system.

Recruiters also often provide vital career advice and coaching, helping candidates polish their resumes and hone their interview skills. They can act as career counselors, guiding job seekers through opaque corporate landscapes and offering insights into market trends. This guidance can be invaluable, especially for those new to the job market or looking to change careers.

Davis H. is a project manager who has seen his career advance by building a relationship with Jan, a recruiter at a staffing firm. “It felt like I had a career coach in my corner,” he said. “I appreciated brainstorming with Jan about opportunities that would make sense for me and her insights on how to talk about my experiences.”

Staffing firms focus on fit because if you’re unhappy and don’t succeed in the role their client will not be happy, either. Plugging people into openings simply to fill them doesn’t result in long-term success and can harm the relationships they’ve worked hard to build.

Employer Misconceptions 

Employers also harbor their own set of misconceptions about staffing companies. Here are some of the common myths:

  • Agencies provide low-quality candidates who couldn’t secure employment through company channels.
  • Using a staffing firm will significantly increase hiring costs.
  • Staffing companies may be fine for filling entry-level or temporary roles but not positions that require specific expertise or high-level qualifications.

The Value to Employers

Employers find staffing companies essential for various reasons, including hiring speed, access to a wide range of highly skilled talent, and the support a firm can deliver throughout the hiring and onboarding process.

A staffing firm focused on a specific market or industry can help a business save time and resources in the recruitment process by handling the initial stages of candidate screening and selection and beyond. Because of their ongoing engagement with candidates, agency recruiters are particularly valuable when a company needs to ramp up staff quickly or is looking to fill specialized positions with scarce talent.

Lucy K., a manager at a large healthcare system, said, “Our top staffing partner operates as an extension of our in-house recruiting team, only with more flexibility. For example, they have helped us staff a new facility, building and onboarding entire teams. They are so in tune with our area and department needs that they are an essential resource we lean on as we evolve.”

Businesses also seek staffing partners who can provide strategic insights and solutions. Staffing companies also have a pulse on the labor market, providing hiring managers with insights that can help them tap underrepresented talent pools and ensure their pay aligns with the market. The flexibility a staffing partner provides allows a business to seize opportunities and adjust to workload fluctuations.

Creating a Win-Win Situation

Far from being a necessary evil, staffing companies can create a win-win scenario. On one hand, staffing companies connect candidates to roles that match their skills and suit their career goals. They support the candidate through the job search and hiring, with communication that can make a difference in their experience of the process.

On the other hand, a staffing partner efficiently provides quality talent for employers across various roles and specialties. When the relationship is in synch, a staffing firm adds business value that includes responsiveness, flexibility, insight, and service that enhances the recruiting and hiring abilities of the in-house team.

While it may seem that staffing agencies are just another layer in the job search process, their role is crucial in bridging the gap between job seekers and employers. Maybe staffing companies aren’t so evil after all?

About Equiliem

Equiliem (www.equiliem.com) believes in empowering success. It’s our job to cultivate relationships that connect people and employers in a way that is inclusive, intelligent, and allows both to thrive. 

Across the U.S., leading companies in healthcare, government, light industrial manufacturing, professional services, and energy rely on us for their workforce solutions. Our recruiting and HR services include contract and direct hire staffing, Payrolling/EOR, Independent Contractor Compliance, and Managed Services.

Since 1995, we’ve helped shape our industry. Today, we continue to research, ask questions, and continuously enhance the candidate journey and client experience.