The Best Questions to Ask When Selecting a Recruitment Partner

The Best Questions to Ask When Selecting a Recruitment Partner


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Recruitment agencies can help companies find the right talent, but not all agencies are created equal. It’s essential to do your due diligence and evaluate potential recruitment partners before making a hiring decision. Here are ten key questions to ask when qualifying a recruitment agency.

1. What Is Your Recruitment Process?

A good recruitment agency should have a transparent and structured recruitment process. Ask about their screening methods, interview process, and reference-checking procedures. You want to ensure that they conduct thorough evaluations of candidates to find the best fit for your organisation.

2. What Industries Do You Specialise In?

It’s important to work with a recruitment agency with industry experience. They’ll better understand the skills and qualifications required for the job and will be able to source candidates who fit your requirements. Ask about their experience in your industry and if they have previously worked with similar companies.

Definitely ask what their experience is hiring for small, growing companies. Do they understand the ‘Founder Mindset’? Or are they more interested in the brilliant CVs of people who ‘could’ do the job for you based on skillsets/keywords on a CV?

3. What Is Your Track Record?

Ask about the recruitment agency’s success rate with small, growing companies. Do they understand how risky it is for smaller companies to hire versus a corporate?

You want to work with a company with a proven track record of success hiring for smaller, business-owner-led companies. Ideally, they’ve been around for a while too.

Look for testimonials from previous clients to understand their success.

4. What Is Your Candidate Pool Like?

Ask about the recruitment agency’s candidate pool and how they source candidates. Do they have a database of candidates, or do they rely on job postings and referrals? You want to work with a recruitment agency with a diverse candidate pool to increase your chances of finding the right candidate.

You also want to work with an agency who treat their candidates like people and not just a CV, or part of the ‘pool’.

5a. What Is Your Recruitment Fee?

Although most recruitment companies operate on a fee basis, pricing structures do vary. Some agencies charge a set fee, and others take a cut of the employee’s pay. Before agreeing to a contract, make sure you fully grasp the pricing structure and any extra fees or costs.

5b. What is the Guarantee?

As a follow on, make sure the guarantee works for you.

The traditional recruitment agency will ‘give’ you a standard 12 week rebate or refund guarantee. This is usually on a sliding scale. For example, if the candidate leaves are one week, you get 80% of the fee back. If they leave your company at 10-12 weeks of employment, you get nothing back or perhaps 10%, if you’re lucky. This is standard and a guarantee structure that’s been around since the 1990s!

There are other recruitment partners who have revised the industry standard. Actually, they’ve bucked the trend altogether. For example, here at Your People Partners, our primary guarantee is this:

If the new person leaves in the first 12 months, we will replace them at no additional cost.

If they leave for any reason!

6. What Is Your Communication Style?

Communication is key when working with a recruitment agency. Ask about their communication style and how often they’ll update you on the recruitment process. You want to work with a responsive agency that keeps you informed throughout the process.

7. What Is Your Turnover Rate?

High turnover rates can be a red flag when evaluating a recruitment agency. Ask about their turnover rate and how they retain their employees. You want to work with an agency with a stable and experienced team.

8. What Is Your Confidentiality Policy?

Confidentiality is critical when it comes to hiring.

Ask about the recruitment agency’s confidentiality policy and how they ensure that sensitive information is kept private. Work with an agency that takes confidentiality seriously and has measures in place to protect your information.

9. What Sets You Apart from Other Recruitment Agencies?

Finally, ask the recruitment agency what sets them apart from their competitors. You want to work with an agency that has a unique value proposition and can provide you with added value beyond just finding candidates.

Finding one that ensures the fee can be paid over 12 months and with a 12-month guarantee may just be what you’re looking for.


When qualifying a recruitment agency, asking the right questions is essential. Evaluate their recruitment process, industry specialisation, track record, candidate pool, pricing model, communication style, turnover rate, confidentiality policy, guarantee policy, and unique value proposition.

By doing your due diligence, you’ll be able to find a recruitment agency that can help you find the right talent for your organisation.

If you are looking for one of the best recruitment consultants in the industry, look no further than our services here at Your People Partners. Our recruitment process is not just about finding people and filling open positions. We take a holistic approach, getting to know your business inside out so we can place team members who help you flourish at any stage of growth while removing the stress and hassle of recruitment. Call us today and let us tend to your recruitment tasks today.

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Helen Sanders Managing Director and Chief People Partner
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