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Allen Recruitment Consulting: What makes us different?

While many recruitment agencies are struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic, at Allen Recruitment Consulting we are thriving. Why? Find out what makes us unique here.

The first half of 2020 has been a real struggle for a lot of companies around the world, and recruitment firms have been hit extremely hard as hiring has dropped across all sectors. However, at Allen Recruitment Consulting (ARC) our 2020 Q2 results have been excellent. In fact, we have exceeded all of the operational, hiring and financial targets we set for ourselves in 2019.

You might be wondering how we’re succeeding at a time when other recruitment agencies are struggling, but the truth is that we’re not like other recruitment agencies. ARC is unique, set up from the beginning to offer something that the industry just wasn’t providing. That has taken us from success to success, to the point where we’re able to thrive even during a pandemic.

So, what is it that makes us different? While we’re also excellent recruiters, our focus is on data science first, using data to fill roles and for our advantage and recruitment technology innovation second. My background is in process improvement and we have applied this to the agency recruitment model to create a framework that is more efficient, automated and allows for a more complete candidate search.

Targeted candidate engagement is key. We start our search locally before expanding to look regionally and then globally, finding candidates whose profile is a match to see first if they are currently looking, and second if they are interested in our client’s job in this location. Thanks to our focus on technology and automation, all of this is done in an efficient, speedy manner that no cold-calling recruiter could achieve!

Our origins
When I set up Allen Recruitment Consulting, it was out of frustration. The traditional recruitment model just wasn’t working for me as a candidate, and I was looking around at the brands that were supposedly the best in the market and seeing that they weren’t delivering. So I set out to create an alternative.

I’ll admit, I was a bit naïve at the time; my idea was that I would simply set up the best recruitment agency around and then return to my day job! It obviously took a lot more hard work than that. But committing to that work let me really understand the ins and outs of recruitment, so I could see where the traditional model was failing candidates and clients alike.

The whole process of recruiting someone through an agency was incredibly transactional. Candidates felt like a commodity, and like the recruiters were doing you a favour. That could have been acceptable if everything else was excellent, but there were some real gaps. Everything from their business knowledge to their promotion of clients was lacking.

So I set out to build not just a new company, but a new style of recruiting that would address these flaws. I also wanted to improve the candidate side of recruitment, ensuring that the people we tried to place were always given something; if not a job, then a more compelling CV or better interview techniques. So far, this has worked extremely well for us.

Boosting recruitment with technology
There’s a fact that has always stuck with me: traditional recruiters are so time-poor they spend less than nine seconds looking at each CV. We knew from the start that couldn’t be how we did things at ARC. A key element of the solution for us was technology, using automation and other tools to make us so much more effective.

Without going into the complicated detail, our tech enables us to start from a much wider talent pool and quickly find the top candidates for the job; a shortlist that can sometimes be as large as 200 people. This has enabled us to focus especially on recruitment across Europe, as we can quickly access extremely large databases of candidates from all over the continent.

Our other huge technological strength is automation. We are able to confidently automate the process of identifying which candidates are interested in the role. Our recruiters do not leave many voicemails or send any follow up messages; instead, they spend their time doing detailed screening of candidates to see if they can do the job and, most importantly, if they want it.

This frees up a huge amount of time to do the things only humans can do: adding value for our candidates and clients. As amazing as our technology is, the whole reason we use it is to give our talented staff the time to really shine.

Our people
Looking once again at the traditional recruitment model, we can see that recruiters nowadays have to be everything at once. Many agencies will have the same people sourcing candidates, dealing with clients, contacting, interviewing, placing and onboarding new employees, and lots more. This doesn’t provide the clients or candidates with the levels of attention they need for the recruitment process to really be effective.

Part of the way we counter this is with technology, freeing up time for our employees, but we also split our workforce into dedicated teams. Our clients deal with account managers, who get to know their needs and challenges, and can put a lot of work into understanding the precise requirements of the roles we are recruiting for.

Then we have dedicated sourcers, whose role is entirely based around identifying the best talent pools and candidates. What all this means is that our clients and candidates are always dealing with dedicated people who have the time to spend genuinely understanding their needs. We find this makes a lot more sense than the increasingly time-poor traditional recruitment model.

How has that led to success?
I’ve talked a lot about the various aspects of our business, but that’s not really how I measure our success. Ultimately, you can have the best processes, the best technologies and the best people in the industry, but unless you consistently deliver high-quality placements it doesn’t matter. So rather than continue highlighting what makes us unique, I’d like to finish by showing how those elements come together to make us successful.

Everything I’ve mentioned here, from our ethos to our technology to our day-to-day work, is based around providing as much value to clients and candidates as possible. Our success has come about because of this. We grew organically, driven by our clients’ demand, and we found they were often reluctant to use other companies after working with us.

Our unique approach to recruitment has left us in a position of strength despite the pandemic and the drop off in hiring. We’re extremely proud of that. And it’s because the way we work enables us to provide the best service possible to both our clients and our candidates.

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