With HR functions under pressure to deliver tangible value in the wake of the economic turmoil of recent years, direct hiring has become the ‘new black’. Why pay recruitment agency fees, the argument goes, when you can create an in-house hiring team that will do the talent acquisition job just as well and demonstrably cheaper?

In many cases, these in-house teams are providing a highly effective service, but are there areas where complete reliance on them might be a mistake? Are we perhaps at risk of throwing out the baby with the proverbial bathwater in a race to dispense with outside expertise?

The aim of any serious business will always be to source the best talent in the shortest period of time and at the right price. The key question, however, is: what is the 'right price'?

The cost of any hire will always be relative rather than absolute, because getting talent acquisition wrong can have an immediate and painful impact on the bottom line. Upfront savings can therefore be quickly wiped out, perhaps even completely reversed, if a recruit does not deliver what is expected of them. Of course the use of Hospitality Search International cannot guarantee a better quality of hire, but we can give organisations access to a much wider pool of candidates, particularly those who are not actively seeking a new role, but who have been pipelined for very specific career opportunities.

Economies of scale mean that we can often cover much more ground than any internal team could justify. This in turn allows businesses to identify and acquire the best people, rather than those who are either already on the market or are the most obvious targets. HSI can also reach out to candidates, such as employees of competition that might be off-limits to an in-house team for political reasons. In this context, the payment of HSI fees may seem like a worthwhile investment rather than an unacceptable overhead.

The argument in favour using Hospitality Search International is particularly strong when it comes to recruiting for highly specialised or 'hard to fill' roles. In-house teams tend to be good at making volume hires for their employers, but how realistic is it to expect them to be effective across all areas of a business? Given this, the deployment of HSI to help on an ad hoc basis may actually make good commercial sense.

One of the hidden costs of the recruitment process that often gets over-looked by organisations is the effect that the constant interface with disappointed candidates can have on the employer brand. Of course, every in-house recruitment team should ideally be able to manage the process to its advantage, providing candidates with rapid feedback, clear communication and helpful advice. But achieving this in practice can be time-consuming, challenging and expensive. HSI can provide a buffer between a company and the marketplace, which protects the brand from the vocal disaffected, who now have more channels to express their frustration than at any other time in history.

While it has many obvious attractions, direct hiring is not, and is unlikely to become, a silver bullet solution to all recruitment challenges.

Over the years we have found the most effective approach for the companies we engage is a hybrid approach one where in-house teams enter into strategic alliances. We at HSI can complement existing capabilities and plug any obvious gaps. For this to work, in-house specialists will need to liaise closely with us, so we can understand the business fully - warts and all. Hence way HSI sees it’s self as an extension of the Internal HR function.

Overall, these are only some of the benefit of working with Hospitality Search International. Organizations not only save on time and money but also get access to a large pool of suitable passive or hidden candidates who choose to work with a respected agency such as HSI so they can remain anonymous and find the role they are looking for.


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