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What Is Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO)?


Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) refers to a business model where an organisation transfers all or part of its recruitment processes to an external service provider. RPO is a form of business process outsourcing (BPO) specifically dedicated to the function of talent acquisition. For our RPO services, we design recruitment solutions and management of the recruitment process. The scope of RPO can vary from sourcing and screening candidates to onboarding new hires. We tailor our RPO services to meet our client’s needs.

A common misconception is that an RPO service provider is the same as a recruitment agency. Whilst there may be some similarities, a recruitment agency generally fills specific positions on a contingency basis. However. an RPO provider handles the entire recruitment process and becomes a talent partner to the hiring organisation.

Alternative Names: Recruitment Outsourcing, Talent Acquisition Outsourcing


How RPO Works

An RPO provider will be able to take care of most recruitment-related tasks. There are many different working methods involved, but it is important to have an RPO company that can manage the end-to-end recruitment process. This means they will be able to do everything from understanding the company’s culture and recruitment needs, to sourcing and screening candidates, coordinating interviews, and overseeing onboarding. They may also manage other aspects of talent acquisition, such as employer branding and ensuring compliance with employment laws.

Importantly, RPO services are flexible and scalable. They can be tailored to meet the specific needs of the company, whether it’s a small start-up looking to rapidly scale or a large corporation seeking to optimise its recruitment process.


Benefits of RPO Explained:

RPO is a great solution for companies who want to expand and can be beneficial to wide range of businesses for many reasons:


RPO providers can easily scale up or down their services based on the fluctuating hiring needs of the company. This flexibility is crucial for businesses in growth phases or those experiencing seasonal fluctuations.


The economies of scale achieved by RPO providers can lead to significant cost savings. They can reduce overhead costs related to recruitment, such as job advertising, recruitment technology, and staff training costs. The cost-per-hire is generally lower with RPO due to their larger talent pool, efficient processes, and industry expertise.

Access to Talent

RPO providers often have access to extensive and diverse talent pools, as well as expertise in candidate sourcing and engagement strategies. They can leverage their resources and networks to attract top talent, which is critical for businesses looking to scale and compete effectively in the market.

Focus on Core Business

By outsourcing recruitment processes, internal teams can focus on their core business functions and strategic initiatives, rather than getting tied down with recruitment tasks. This is particularly beneficial for start-ups and SMEs where resources are often limited.

Industry Expertise and Compliance

RPO providers are experts in recruitment processes and stay up-to-date with the latest industry trends, best practices, and legal requirements. They can provide advice on developing effective recruitment strategies, ensuring compliance with employment laws, and improving the overall quality of hires.

Enhanced Employer Branding

A professional RPO provider can also help to enhance a company’s employer branding, which is crucial in attracting and retaining top talent. They can ensure a positive candidate experience throughout the recruitment process, which in turn can improve the company’s reputation and attractiveness in the job market.

Improved Recruitment Metrics

RPO providers track various recruitment metrics such as time-to-fill, cost-per-hire, and quality of hire. This data can provide valuable insights into the recruitment process, helping businesses to make informed decisions and continually improve their recruitment strategies.


RPO Best Practices

Communicate Effectively

One of the main things to consider for RPO is communication. It is vital to make sure the hiring company and the RPO company communicate effectively to align expectations and performance outcomes. Clarifying the scope of services before engaging an RPO provider helps define the desired outcomes of the services. This can range from sourcing suitable candidates to onboarding a certain number of new hires in a given time period. Whatever the requirement, it’s always best practice to discuss and agree on realistic outcomes before engagement.

Communication is also key to getting things done. The talent partner tends to integrate into the hiring organisation. That makes it super important to find effective ways to work together.

Integrate with In-House Recruitment Teams

In-house recruitment teams may have deep knowledge of the company culture and specific needs. However, RPO companies and recruitment agencies tend to have specific ways of working to get the job done. With this in mind, it becomes incredibly important to make sure that the RPO company can integrate with existing in-house team. Collaboration is key, as working together is the only way to achieve recruitment success when it comes to RPO.


Related Terms: Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), Human Resource Outsourcing (HRO), Managed Services Provider (MSP), Contingent Workforce, Talent Acquisition, Employer Branding, Recruitment Metrics.