If you’re losing business to your competitors it’s time to take a moment for some self-reflection. You need to analyse why you’re losing business, what your competitors are doing, and how you can become competitive once more. Let’s look at some specific actions you can take to improve your agency and its effectiveness within the sectors you recruit in…
Analyse Why You Lost Business
The first step is to take stock. If you can, ask the prospect or client why they’ve decided to work with one of your competitors or why their candidates were stronger than yours. The chances are, a quick conversation will provide you with plenty of insights into what you need to do to ensure it doesn’t happen next time. The key thing here is to listen. If there’s something wrong in your pitch, or perhaps in a brief you took on, the important action here is to close the job down and note the reasons. This will allow you to analyse any trends at the end of a quarter or per customer and focus in on any areas which need improving.
Analyse What Your Competitors are Doing
The next step here is to have a look and see what your competitors are doing. This is an easy way to review your place in the market and to troubleshoot what you’re offering clients and prospects. If you are charging far higher than the average in your sector, or perhaps you’re charging too little, now is a good time to update your pricing structure.
Tweak Your Value Proposition
With the above in mind, it’s now necessary to tweak your value proposition. You may well offer great services to your clients and prospects, but if they don’t know what those are then you’ll quickly lose potential business. Similarly, if you know what your competitors are offering, you’ll find it far easier to pitch your value to potential clients, and keep the clients you have too. It’s also worth analysing your account management structure at this point. Good account management provides you with a temperature gauge, letting you know how your client base feels about working with you.
Consider Your Brand
This one is more subjective but it’s important to spend some time thinking about. When considering how you shape up against the competition, pay attention to your branding. Is it relevant to the sector you recruit within? Is it attractive to both clients and candidates? If you are attracting the wrong target customers or candidates to your door in the first place then your recruiters are far more likely to be losing more business than winning the right type of business. Some reflection and creativity here can go a long way towards ensuring your agency turns the right heads.
Take Action and Constantly Evolve
Finally, make sure after running through this blog you TAKE ACTION! I see too many recruiters just moving on to the next job or pitch and doing the same thing over and over. I fully appreciate that our role as a recruiter has not changed in years from the basic concept of matching a candidate to a role and a company to a candidate but how each agency does so is constantly evolving. It’s important to always reflect on what makes your agency different and why you win and more importantly why you lose business.
For further tips and advice, download our eBook below and create a recruitment agency brand that turns the right heads.
About the Author: Wendy McDougall is the CEO of Firefish Software. With just under 20 years experience in the recruitment industry, Wendy is on a mission to inspire the next generation of recruiters and help challenge the traditional recruitment agency model of doing things. In her spare time, you’ll find her enjoying some down time with the family, playing squash and feeding her inner geek with all the latest technology!