How to Differentiate Your Agency at Zero Cost

Recruitment is a cut-throat industry and client loyalty is a tough nut to crack. It’s likely that you work your socks off to get your agency noticed online - whether it’s upgrading your recruitment website or improving your SEO, and all of that comes at a price. Once you’ve got those things right, how can you make sure you stand out from the recruitment crowd without forking out even more money? The answer is simple: service.

Truly differentiating yourself in terms of the service you deliver will cost you (pretty much) nothing and will help you stand out when it comes to getting word of mouth referrals and attracting social media hype. Here are 5 great ways to add value at zero cost:

1. Get everyone singing from the same hymn sheet

Think Different like AppleYou may just assume that all your employees “get” your values. If this is the case, you could be missing a trick. Making sure everyone fully understands and buys into the value standards you have set for your business is more than essential in order to truly differentiate your agency through spectacular service. A good way to make sure this is the case is to have regular sessions where your staff can talk about their successes and challenges. In most agencies there is something to learn by sharing information amongst team members. Also, a social setting is a great way of encouraging buy-in, so if possible aim for at least one staff outing a year where team building is the focus. It might cost you a bit of cash, but it’ll pay significant dividends if you plan it carefully.

2. Get under the skin of your customers

Clients are the lifeblood of any business. Really making an effort to understand the pain points of your clients and candidates and then delivering above and beyond expectation is a great way to stand out from the masses. It’s well worth encouraging and regularly collating formal and informal feedback from your clients and candidates to help you get a good idea of their impression of your service. Setting up a survey for candidate satisfaction or simply asking your clients for constructive criticism or feedback could be a manageable first step in terms of significantly improving your agency.

listen3. Listen

The more established our businesses get, the more we tend to concentrate on what we have to say. Whether we’re speaking to the press, to our clients or engaging on social media, it’s too easy to fall into the trap of focusing more on what we say than listening to others. There are opportunities all around us, and listening is the very best way to be proactive and gain respect. Lead from the front and make listening an Olympic sport in your agency.

4. Go the extra mile

Think about how you feel when someone surprises you with the effort they make on your behalf; now put the shoe on the other foot. Whether it’s going the extra mile for clients or for candidates, it’s not a difficult task, but it makes a huge difference to the perception your clients have of your agency. To encourage staff, you could set up a “going the extra mile” recognition system in your agency. Even a simple gesture such as a box of chocolates or an extra-long lunch break can get people seriously motivated and focused on going the extra mile.

5. Encourage ideas

If you feel as if you’re not encouraging ideas, today is the day to do something about it. For example, it might be worth getting a system in place for every member of staff to have their ideas heard and listened to! Once you’ve listened to the ideas, if you decide to implement them, make sure the person who generated the idea gets recognition and they know that their efforts are appreciated. Generating ideas will very quickly have a snowball effect if you manage them correctly. Irrespective of whether they’re focused on cost saving, efficiency or improved service, everyone will benefit; including you.

Credit: Images from Stuart Miles via
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Suzi Larcombe

Suzie is a Copywriter who specialises in B2B copywriting. She creates blogs, web copy, brochures, slogans and LinkedIn profiles for a range of SMEs.

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