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6 Must-Haves of a Boutique Recruitment Agency

The market is full of competing recruitment agencies. Whether large or boutique, almost the same amount of effort goes into running a successful business. So to help stand out in the race, here are six must-haves of a boutique recruitment agency.

When choosing a recruitment agency, most companies start their search with big brand names that they hear about almost everywhere. But, being on top of the list doesn’t mean they are the best choice to go with.

Though boutique consulting firms are lesser-known, they still can offer almost all services at a much more affordable price. There are plenty of reasons that makes a boutique recruitment agency a perfect choice for companies.

What is a Boutique Recruitment Agency?

A Boutique Recruitment Agency is generally used to refer to small staffing firms specializing in a particular niche and offer only limited services to their clients. Often this type of agency is created by a senior consultant who has a lot of experience in the recruitment field.

Hence, these agencies are influenced by the founder’s personal brand and network. Since they have low operating charges, they offer lower-cost services but provide a higher quality customer experience than most large firms. A boutique recruitment agency focuses more on the specialisation and culture of a company than size and staff.

They pay extra attention to strengthening relationships with clients and candidates.

Features of a Boutique Recruitment Agency

  • Informal Culture: In a boutique recruitment agency, hierarchies are more relaxed and fluid than larger firms. Therefore, most boutique staffing firms have an informal work culture where ideas flow smoothly without any authoritative barrier.
  • Innovation: Boutique recruitment agencies are flexible in operating procedures, so they quickly adapt to new market needs and trends.
  • Implementation: Having staff with exceptional expertise in their field means new ideas are offered and implemented immediately.
  • Efficiency: Since boutique recruitment agencies are very selective about the project they work on, hence, are very efficient in their work. It helps them save a lot of resources, money and most importantly, time.
  • Entrepreneurial work culture: Since the founders of boutique staffing firms have a set vision and direction, they tend to hire someone who fits their vision and has a similar spirit. Due to this approach, all members are more entrepreneurs on their own.

6 Must-Haves of a Boutique Recruitment Agency

1. A Proper Recruitment Marketing plan

Running a successful boutique recruitment agency needs a lot of planning and marketing to get clients and drive revenue. A recruitment marketing plan should help agencies stand out among competitors and scale their business. Starting from personal networks is a good approach, but an effective plan is required at some point. A few ways in which a boutique recruitment agency can market its services are:

  • Identify your needs: Recruiters must be clear of what they need to achieve before going further. Prepare a list of your existing clients, products and resources you are using. Analyse market opportunities, competitors, clients, etc. Track your ROI and KPI to see how much you can allocate to your marketing plan.
  • Define your target market: As a boutique recruitment agency, all companies can not be your target audience. Dig in the companies that are inclined with your niche. Defining your target audience and USP is very crucial. Your target market may be further segmented based on demographics like age, sex, location, etc.
  • Email Marketing: Emails have been used for a long time and never gets old. Emails are the best way to reach out to new clients and connect with existing ones. Creating newsletters, option forms etc. and sending them occasionally can make a lot of difference.
  • Landing Page: Build a professional website where you want your client to land. Well-designed templates, location-specific trends, rich reporting, blogs, etc., attract many potential clients.
  • Set a budget: It can be daunting to have so many marketing plans but no investment to implement them. Divide your budget into two categories: Set expenses like salary, subscriptions, website expenses, Recruitment software, etc. Another chunk for variable expenses, including advertisements, sponsorships etc.
  • Analyze: After every fixed period, analyze how many new leads you are getting from different channels? How has marketing strategy increased sales? Website traffic, etc. It will help you take the next step.
  • Use Google ads, social media, affiliate programs, etc., to find new clients. Content marketing has a vast potential in scaling your business. Create valuable SEO content and publish it as a blog. Share your customer success stories to generate more leads.

2. Networking

No matter how much recruitment practices change, it has always been a people business, and as long as people are involved in business, networking is essential. Most of the job posts are filled by a contact in someone’s network so, whether networking is done in person or online, it will always be a vital tool for recruiters.

Networking in person: Whoever you engage with outside your workplace counts as networking. Connecting with the right people is necessary for future opportunities. Face to face encounters can be a great way to get the inside track on your sector and hone your negotiation skill. Knowing someone personally can make you their first choice whenever a recruiter is needed.

Online networking: The rise of social media has made online networking a prefered method, especially among newer generations. It can be the best way to reach passive candidates and clients. Online networking is also an excellent way for increasing your global reach. In online networking, researching a person’s background is done before engaging, unlike in-person networking, which saves a lot of time.

Both are great ways to maximize your networking reach. Blending both would give fabulous results.

3. Website SEO

An SEO optimised can act as a magic wand for a boutique recruitment agency. Ranking on the first page of Google means more chances of getting clients. A website not only helps recruiters to promote their services but also distinguish them from their competitors. It helps build an employer’s branding, build credibility, and stand out in the marketplace. Building an SEO optimized website may take some time, but it will always be worth it to have one for your agency.

4. Recruitment software – ATS & Recruitment CRM

No one can deny the role of an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) and Candidate Relationship Management (CRM) System in the recruitment sector. With access to an ATS and CRM, recruiters can smoothen their recruiting process right from filling open positions quickly to providing the best candidate experience. An Applicant Tracking System (ATS) helps the recruiter facilitate the hiring process, from posting job advertisements to giving offer letters to a shortlisted candidate.

The main focus of the Candidate Relationship Management (CRM) System is to nurture and guide passive talents throughout the hiring process to enhance the candidate’s experience.

In addition, CRM helps recruiters contact current and future candidates through automated emails, job recommendation portals, etc. Using these Recruitment Software can help streamline the talent acquisition process.

5. Video Interviewing Tool

Taking interviews is essential to analyze the communication, soft skills and non-verbal expressions. But scheduling interviews can be a hectic task, and on top of that, if there are many candidates to go through, the process becomes more complex.

So, video interviewing tools can be of great help to find the best talent with fewer efforts. Using ATS, recruiters can give the power of scheduling interviews in the candidate’s hand, which is automatically updated in the employer’s calendar.

In addition, one can choose text-based interviews or AI video interviews to smoothen the hiring process further. In text-based interviews, AI tests the candidate by giving some questions and ranking them based on keywords used in answers.

On the other hand, body language and expression analysis are done in a video-based interview, and candidates are given scores according to their performance. This approach saves a lot of time and cost-per-hire.

6. Employee Referral Program

Recruiting involves many approaches, of which referral-based recruiting is most prominent.

First, it offers a large pool of skilled candidates in less time. Second, Involving the company’s existing employees instils a feeling of belongingness with the company, which improves the work culture and enhances the experience of new hires.

Third, recruiters can introduce many rewards to engage employees in referral programs like some extra cash or movie tickets with a condition.

Finally, referred candidates usually have a general idea about the company’s mission and workflow; hence they work for the company longer than one recruited from job boards.

No doubt, working with a large recruitment agency can give splendid results, but a boutique recruitment agency may have a better result per the company’s need and specific sectors.

Moreover, with solid networking with industry experts and specialis ed search strategies, a boutique recruitment agency can help a company find top talent in a short amount of time.

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