So you have an urgent need, a critical role within your organisation causing considerable pain - it needs filling with the highest calibre candidate, fast. So you invite a bunch of agencies to discuss the opportunity with you, but what do you look for when assessing their capability? How do you know the fit is right?

So often organisations look for the black and white when picking their partner - Do they have a history of placing this type of role, Working with similar organisations and are the fees right? But what about the softer skills, that in my experience are equally as important when choosing a partnership built for success.

I recommend looking at, and for the following;

1. Connection - Are the individuals people that you can and will enjoy working with? We often work on our definition of what is an aspirational client for us here at Collingwood, a big part of that is do we like them, and if we received a call on a Friday night, would we want to go for a drink with them.

2. Do they truly care about you and your culture? A hire is much more than a bum on a seat, they drive organisational performance, and the right hire takes away pain and those sleepless nights. What motivates the recruiter? The fee at the end, or the prospective long term partnership.

3. Do they appreciate the long term impact they can have on your organisation? The war for talent is increasingly competitive! Every candidate they engage with should leave having a fantastic impression of your organisation, even if the time isn’t right for a move. They should care about your longer term strategy and how they can impact it.

If you can consider the following when speaking with potential partners, and pair this with the foundations then you increase your chances of finding the right partnership. A partnership that should result in short term fantastic talent, whilst making the task of candidate attraction easier and a more enjoyable experience.