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Centralized recruitment: addressing the flood of talent demand

Greetings from St. Louis! I spend a lot of time here, not only because it is home to Anheuser-Busch, but also because it is home to our centralized recruitment hub. There is something about an office when you walk in and there is a buzz. That buzz tells me business is happening here. Everyone is on the phone, and we're trying to put as many people to work for our clients as we can.

Our centralized hub has been proven effective in being agile to handle a wide scope of job orders, ranging from hard-to-find niche skills to mass/large-scale hiring blitzes. I'm not sure if this centralized model would have worked as well several years back as it does now. Back then, clients were leery about having recruiters who were not in their local market.

Now I think to myself, Do we have to be? No. And moreover, is it even more advantageous to have a large hub rather than a small local office? Absolutely. Being in a central location lets us be agile and scalable.

There is a statistic out there that says 95 percent of staffing agencies in the U.S. are under $5 million in revenue. That might sound like a big number, but realistically, firms under $5 million typically only have one or two office locations.

These companies usually serve local smaller businesses, and charge pretty hefty fees. Above all, most of these smaller companies can't scale up when the demand increases, since they are not made to handle large volume. They usually end up fumbling when they try to take on larger projects. (Ever been caught in a hail storm? Same idea.)

Having a centralized fulfillment hub not only lets us leverage the flexibility to look deep into local markets, but also to take on these large-scale projects, or service clients with mass hiring ramp ups. Our St. Louis team can accommodate recruitment efforts in different time zones, maintains a solid talent pool of recruiters, and can easily span nationally.

Coming out of a bad economy, companies are (soon) realizing that some of their cuts were too deep, or the funding for new projects are now being approved. We have to anticipate this wave and be ready to respond.

Since I'm in St. Louis, I'll reference T.S. Eliot, the great American poet born in this very city. Eliot described the Mississippi River as "a strong brown god." When it rises heavily, the floods can wipe out many structures.

The most important thing is for you to recognize whether your staffing providers are prepared to meet the potentially destructive force of a talent demand flood.

This post was written by Jesse Ohayon, former Vice President of Recruiting at
Yoh.  Learn more about Jesse.

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