HRO Today Global Spring 2014 - 25

Talent Acquisition
In the 20th century, capital was
the basis of advantage, but in the
21st century, talent will drive global
advantage.
" knowledge workers " who work in fields like
engineering, technology, and the sciences-companies
are turning to RPO providers to outmaneuver the
competition. RPO firms offer dedicated infrastructure and
expertise to find and secure scarce talent, and in many
cases operate across multiple employment markets.
Familiarity with RPO is still not the norm. Fifty-four per
cent of respondents say they are only somewhat familiar
or not at all familiar with RPO. And only 26 per cent fully
outsource their recruiting/hiring process using an RPO
model.
Overwhelmingly, companies that outsource recruiting
services hire vendors on a stand-alone contract, separate
from other HR outsourcing services (68 per cent use a
separate provider).
Companies are most likely to use a third-party recruiting
firm to hire professional staff (50 per cent), though thirdparty
recruiting is also common in hiring temporary or
contingent labour (36 per cent).
Of those respondents who do not currently outsource
a whole or part of the recruiting function, 40 per cent
indicate they would like to do so in the future. Areas of
particular interest for outsourcing include professional
recruiting (48 per cent), contingent or temporary
labour (38 per cent), and outsourcing all recruiting
responsibilities (34 per cent).
Overwhelmingly respondents cite " faster time-to-hire "
as the key benefit of a third-party recruiter partnership,
followed by integrating multiple sourcing channels (58
per cent) and lower cost to recruit (51 per cent).
Talent Supply Chain
These findings support a more general, growing interest
among global companies to adopt a talent supply chain
management mindset. As the name suggests, talent
supply chain management is much like traditional supply
chain management: directing a network of suppliers
and resources to ensure the optimal mix of price, access,
and risk. The high level of interest in RPO-including
professional recruiting as well as contingent and
temporary labour staffing-demonstrates a greater
degree of sophistication about balancing the cost of
recruitment against other critical variables, particularly
access.
Whereas a decade ago outsourcing was usually a costsavings
tactic, in the future, talent-related outsourcing
is as likely to be related to accessing top-flight talent
or improving time-to-hire ratios. In fact, in a 2013
Talent Supply Chain study sponsored by Kelly Services,
companies defined as best-in-class were three times
more likely to " strongly agree " they take greater risks to
secure the talent they need, and two times more likely
to " strongly agree " accessing high quality talent when
needed is more important than cost.
For many global organisations, recruiting the right talent
at the right time is the single most influential factor
driving growth and innovation. In the 20th century,
capital was the basis of advantage, but in the 21st
century, talent will drive global advantage. Far from
simply filling existing gaps as quickly and economically as
possible, recruiting has become a high-stakes competition
to foresee economic conditions and business projections,
estimate critical talent gaps as early as possible, and
source the highest-quality talent available.
All of this is part of a larger trend toward managing
talent needs holistically across all categories of work-a
discipline called talent supply chain management.
Outsourcing recruiting is no longer primarily about
carving out an existing internal function and giving it to
the lowest-cost provider. Rather, outsourcing recruiting
allows organisations to access niche expertise that is
simply too difficult or too expensive to grow in house.
Third-party recruiters and RPO firms offer companies
expertise in particular disciplines or geographies,
SPRING 2014 | www.hroglobal.com
[25]
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HRO Today Global Spring 2014

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