HRO Today Global Winter 2016 - 13

RPO Asia 2016
Big Data and Mobile Technologies
Since they moved to Singapore ÿ ve years ago to set
up Randstad Sourceright's Asia Paciÿ c headquarters,
Edmonds has presided over a steady expansion of the
ÿ rm's business. In 2015, the company ÿl led some 7,000
roles across the region. " We've grown about 30 percent
year over year, and we have this (same) expectation for
the year ahead. "
PeopleScout's Zhang is also looking at a 'hiring surge'
this year. He notes that his clients in the areas of aviation,
health care, retail, and professional services had a 'spike
in hires' last year and that he expects this trend to
continue.
One factor that is going to drive growth is new
technology, particularly tools that make sourcing and
retention easier.
" People are looking for ways to be more efÿ cient
without a huge overhead of staff, " explains Edmonds.
Companies are turning to mobile apps like Anthology
(formerly Poachable), which has been described as
the 'swipe left, swipe right, Tinder of headhunting'.
Anthology is also popular with applicants, because it
allows them to remain anonymous; in other words,
they can check out opportunities without alerting their
boss. The adoption of mobile technology is " partly
generational, but it's also market driven, " says Edmonds.
" It could save companies a lot of money. "
Another growing trend is the adoption of predictive
analytics, which build on a client's existing datasets to
shorten recruiting times and make better hires. Randstad
Sourceright launched a data aggregator in the United
States last year and is now bringing it to Asia.
" The market for RPO is getting a lot more sophisticated, "
says Edmonds. " What I've seen in the ÿ ve years I've
been here is that the knowledge base of our buying
community has increased dramatically. We haven't
gone through the generational growth of the U.S.
and Europe. We've jumped from Gen 1 to Gen 3 in a
short period of time. Our buying community is getting
very sophisticated; they want additional service lines
like recruitment marketing, employer branding, and
employee assessment. So RPO has moved away from
just recruitment and is moving into a broader HRO
environment. "
A Transformational Year for Asian RPO
Reinforcing the move of RPO ÿrms into the broader HR
space has been a wave of corporate consolidation that
started two years ago as large American companies
acquired smaller Asian players that have better
knowledge of the local markets.
Examples include Allegis' acquisition of Talent 2,
Adecco's decision to combine its two RPO and MSP
(Managed Service Provider) units, and a merger between
RGF Executive Search and China's Bo Le Associates.
PeopleScout's parent company purchased Australia's
HrX in 2014, thereby making Sydney its APAC RPO
headquarters, and then expanded further this January
with an acquisition of Aon Hewitt's RPO division.
" This will strengthen our position in Asia because we
are going to have 200 new staff in India, " says Zhang
in reference to the latest move. " We'll have a better
sourcing base and a quicker turnaround time. Aon Hewitt
and our parent company, TrueBlue, are also entering a
strategic alliance that will enable them to offer not just
RPO, but also other HRO services. It should dramatically
increase our cross-selling opportunities. "
Industry-watchers expect further consolidation in the
months ahead and note that it should be clearer which
companies are merging by the second half of the year.
The moves by American and European ÿ rms are partially
fueled by a need to follow their clients as they expand
overseas.
" This year will be a transformative year for the RPO
industry. It will be a year of integration, " Zhang
concludes. " It's exciting for RPO professionals in Asia.
They are probably being targeted by larger ÿ rms.
From a broader perspective, if acquired, [companies]
will probably get more funds and larger clients. If the
acquisition works really well, it means broader career
development for Asian RPO professionals-a chance to
step up and take bigger roles and even work on other
continents. "
WINTER 2016 | www.hroglobal.com
[13]
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HRO Today Global Winter 2016

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