Recruitment Marketing Metrics: Which Are Most Important?

Recruitment Marketing Metrics: Which Are Most Important?

What Are Recruitment Metrics?

Recruitment metrics and KPIs are a standard set of measurements used to manage and improve the process of hiring candidates into an organization.

After you’ve found an agency to outsource marketing operations, you’ll want to establish your baseline performance metrics. This is one of the most important aspects you should be discussing in your weekly management meetings. Move with efficiency, sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement, and work with the marketing agency that will inform your decision-making to establish your benchmark metrics.

The minimum amount of information required is below. You’ll want to review monthly performance to set a modest yet sturdy plan to create an evolved marketing strategy. It’s best if you have multiple years of data, and your historical performance will be limited to channels that you have invested time and budget into. It’s best if the metrics have been either reviewed or compiled and audited by a third party.

1. Application Completion Rates

Definition: This metric is for the top of the funnel. Somewhere in your management structure, someone is monitoring application completion rates. This ultimately compares how many applications were started vs. how many turned into completed applications.

Inverted: When you invert this funnel, you’ll see abandonment rates. Breaking down this metric will enable you to understand the opportunity for performance improvement. The best option is to try and understand where and why people are dropping off on certain devices, how many form fields are too many, and which job categories tend to have higher drop-off rates.


2. Sourcing and Channel Effectiveness

Definition: Today more than ever before, you’ll find staffing companies using an ever-increasing number of channels – job boards, referrals, career sites, social networks, and advertising. If someone submits an application and you haven’t tracked how they found you, you will lose track of how your budget is being spent and may increase your wasted spend – marketing dollars spent without identifiable return paths to revenue generation.

Inverted: At a glance, you may be able to compare which channels are performing far and above the rest. You’ll want to get more information including how many times your site/ad was shown an impression, how often it turned into a click, and the rate at which a click led to an application. Simply because you aren’t getting many clicks from a source like Wikipedia or GlassDoor doesn’t mean you should stop investing in that channel. On the contrary, you may find that millions of impressions and thousands of clicks on Indeed isn’t achieving the return you expected, or were counting on.


3. Cost Per Hire

Definition: To control cost per hire, you’ll need to make sure your website forms are properly synced with your applicant tracking system, and that fields are merged properly. Calculating a cost per hire is not inherently difficult, however, the pieces don’t always fit together, and monthly changes in your current staff and client base – no to mention the impact of your resource pool – can dramatically influence your perceived cost of hire.

Inverted: We’ve seen plenty of staffing startups that began their agencies without a website. It’s useful but not necessary. As a starting point, viewing your website as a digital recruiter to collect applications will give you a better sense of the impact of digital vs traditional outreach and data collection. Once you start attributing any placements or client requests from the website, then you’ve shifted to include the website as an asset instead of a liability, and you can look more deeply into the interactions that led to those events.


4. Time to Fill

Definition: From the moment there is a need for a new position through the process up until the completion of a contract, you need to know the exact time from when the application arrived in your inbox to the date that candidate is placed. This number has several variables tied to it for breakdown further, however, as a starting point, you’ll want to be able to identify the lead time to assess and predict future performance.

Inverted: An awareness of your time to fill gives you healthy indicators, and once you have these data points aggregated you’ll be able to paint a clearer picture for your firm and investors. Ideally, you’ll want to track the total time between when a hiring manager formally indicates the need. From there you may spend time looking for candidates in your existing database, and you may eventually proceed to spend time conducting lead generation efforts. The metric of time spent filling a position may seem too simple if you’re just starting out, and too complex after you have IT set up your dashboards. If you’re the business owner or the marketing manager, you know that your ability to sell and service contracts comes in part or solely from your ability to demonstrate that you can conduct business transactions at a faster rate than your competitors.


5. Retention Rates

Definition: Another major metric that you will want to be able to emphasize is the retention rates of placed candidates. Tracking and analyzing organizational performance for this metric will give you critical indicators of the ability to hire recruiters that can place qualified, no-headache candidates with long-term net gain for all parties involved.

Inverted: While this staffing metric may at first appear light-hearted, the diligence of your staff combined with the optimism and integrity of your candidates should continue to enhance your work, and retention rates should be a percentage you can open and freely discuss with prospects, potential candidates, and your internal team. When you have the right reporting set up, decision-making is done for you to confer with those parties to identify gaps for innovation and improvement.


6. Offer Acceptance Ratio

Definition: While this ratio may seem simple at first, staffing analysts may disagree. Once a client signs off on a contract, you now have to convert candidates into contributing temp or full-time employees. This process may take months or years, and this is but one variation of how to conceptualize your data points on offer acceptance. For example, your data analytics or dashboards may shed light into how long offers were outstanding prior to acceptance, and you may even take into account the difference between the amount of time it takes for acceptance and rejection.

Inverted: From a management standpoint, your database is the list you need to live and breathe. New clients with new job orders will put a light but bearing weight on your recruiting team, and new candidate applying for jobs you don’t have orders for – yet. Neither of these circumstances is entirely unbearable at a glance, however, the optimal customer journey in staffing revolves around just-in-time applications to fill new or recent job orders. Build out your total number of contracts by looking for companies that need the talent you already have in your pipeline. Build out your candidate list by filling for new or anticipatory job orders. The happy medium is to maintain high offer acceptance ratios that don’t overextend your staff, your clients, or your candidates.

The best place to find the answers to the questions we’ve presented will likely be in some spreadsheets or reports sent to you quarterly or weekly. Connect with a Staffing Nerd for consultative conversation or to request an analyst to join your next quarterly conference call.


Find an Agency to Fill Gaps in Your Staff

Find an Agency to Fill Gaps in Your Staff

Staffing companies considering a digital growth strategy must embrace the concept of outsourcing marketing operations to reduce complexity, overhead, and management. When done correctly, working with marketing agencies that focus on staffing will reduce considerable time, money, and other resources.

This blog post is the second in a series to help staffing business owners and marketing managers efficiently create a framework for tactical lead (client or candidate) acquisition. Learn how to avoid destructive efforts and implement sound best practices to make informed decisions through the process.

Using an agency for horizontal integration provides for marketing, creative, and development resources to help grow your team without the management or overhead.

Finding a company to outsource your marketing operations is perhaps the hardest part of the whole process. Start with your own professional network. After that, you may need to engage an industry insider to hear who has the best portfolio. Always keep in mind ‘why’ you’re pursuing an agency and share that perspective with your business partner or investment banker. Understanding your reasons and motivations will help him/her guide budget allocation and advise accordingly.

Beyond the day-to-day management of your marketing operations, finding a company that can conduct digital marketing initiatives on your behalf will greatly increase your internal attention to offsite, offline activities. There are three topics of consideration when approaching a firm or comparing a new one to existing resources.

Hand-Picked Network

The right agency will have personal relationships with every single individual in their expansive network. Look to them to jump-start your selection process by providing only pre-screened, well-qualified, ready-to-work candidates.

Industry Insiders

You need more than a staffing company. If you can, find have a full-service digital agency under the same roof, and use their own in-house digital strategists and marketing professionals to find and source talent for your needs.

Post-Placement Support

Placing a candidate is just the first step in a long journey. Look for an agency that is willing to stay connected to your candidate lifecycle and give you the tools you need to stay successful and productive over the long haul.


There is a multitude of ways that staffing marketing agencies can provide support to your company. If you’re a classic staffing firm, you may be focusing on developing social media plans and blog posts to keep your web visibility fresh in social feeds. Modern firms may require more technology-intense architects to fix complex issues or build custom software integrations with your technology partners.

Common agencies can find or fill the following roles, as they relate to building your web presence into an engine for producing client requests and candidate applications:

  • User Experience

  • Graphic Design

  • Web Design

  • Digital Marketing

  • SEO / SEM Professionals

  • Copywriters

  • Project Managers

  • Front-End Developers

How to Find Your ‘Why’ When Scaling Your Staffing Company

How to Find Your ‘Why’ When Scaling Your Staffing Company

Staffing companies considering a digital growth strategy cannot go forward blindly with guesswork and speculation. That’s a recipe for disaster and will waste considerable time, money, and other resources. This blog post is the first in a series to help staffing business owners and marketing managers efficiently create a framework for tactical lead (client or candidate) acquisition. Learn how to avoid destructive efforts and implement sound best practices to make informed decisions through the process.

Why double down on candidate acquisition in the first place? Obviously, it’s to make your company stronger but define ‘why’ in clear specifics about your business.


Are you considering any M&A events?


Strategic allocation of investment capital towards creating or cementing an indefensible and categorically scalable approach to decreasing cost-per-placement is a conversation that should be held monthly, if not weekly.

If you are buyer-side, consider bringing in consulting groups to appropriately assess the key behavior of web visitors and understand the website’s capacity to consistently and adequately yield candidate and client contacts turned contracts. Without a third-party assessment to gain perspective on realistic projections and opportunities for improvement, you may rely on the first impressions of the web analytics and pay-per-click campaigns set up by other agencies.

If you are seller-side, don’t start anything and keep conversations closed until you have an aggressive yet understanding control over the cost of your return on advertising and marketing spend. This is especially true if you have only managed your marketing internally.

Are you considering adding new service offerings?


If you rely on your website for any degree of reasons to sustain the profitability of your business, you need to understand that it can take up to three months for updates to your website – new service pages, blog posts, or landing pages – to be indexed fully. Indexing is the second phase of the use of Googlebot. Googlebot is the processing engine that initially crawls, or copies, versions of every website on the internet. Since Google is processing more than five billion queries per day, Googlebot has less bandwidth and therefore can create a pause between when you publish a page and when Googlebot receives an updated copy to index. Indexing is the processing of using natural language processing to dissect words and phrase groups, create ontological parsing and linguistic analysis of the text segment. It boils down to a weighted probability of recency, frequency, and reach.

Recency – how new is the content on your website? If you’re new to the web, it will take you longer to create organic search rankings competitive to a firm that has historically performed well on existing keywords.

Frequency – how often are you adding (ontologically) relevant keywords in bulk formats to your site examples include blog posts and landing pages.

Reach – Once you understand the importance of recency and frequency, reach is most correctly considered to be a result of affirmative user behavior in historical visits to your website.

For example, you might be strong in per diem healthcare and want to expand into travel nursing. If you want clients and candidates to find you, it’s important to forget that getting and keeping rankings in Google is a full-time job.


Are you looking into geographic expansion?


Do you have a really strong footprint in your region and want to establish new offices?

Look for opportunity in other states or regions in close proximity. Through analyzing your business you may have discovered some client concentration issues. Capturing new candidates or clients may allow you to grow at a quicker pace in the market. In every case, you really want to hone in on reasons that are going to work for you and engage your team to encourage the process.


Have you seen similar companies to yours grow faster?


The green-eyed monsters rear their heads from time to time, and the competitive spirit is highly sought after in staffing firms with deep market knowledge. Small steps towards increasing your market share – whether by service, specialty, or locale – all add up. If you’re forward thinking in your approach to business development, you’ve already thought through the competitive advantages and disadvantages in place. Some staffing companies are client heavy and candidate weak. Regardless, our opinion remains firm: Leverage digital acquisition and hire the most talented recruiters and account managers you can find.



We discussed this in a conversation with Justin Allison from ERO Staffing. Justin embraces the opportunity digital marketing allows for, and gave us some insight into the best recruiter he’s ever worked with, and hired. Read below to catch a snippet from our conversation.

Justin Allison, Director of Locum Tenens Recruitment and Marketing
ERO Workforce Solutions

From a recruiter standpoint, and this is a recruiter that I hired and that’s not why I’m going to say, “She’s the best,” just because I hired her because frankly it had nothing to do with me, it’s all about her. This individual is absolutely exceptional. We knew it from the very moment she stepped in our office for an interview there was something special about this girl.

She comes from an extremely good family background of core values. Work ethic is insane. That’s so important, work ethic. She’s a former D1 college basketball player. I personally have hired a lot of former student athletes because there’s a lot of parallels in recruiting as in with athletics, team sports. It’s a good transition for new recruiters that have played sports throughout high school and or throughout college.

You could just tell from the get go, from the phone interview to then the in-person interview to the second one. And then what literally sealed it, to give you a little bit of insight on this individual and how she grew up and just her foundation of who she is, she’s from Iowa. In the summers, she would work in the corn fields husking up and down. One of her athletic directors told me this about how dedicated she was to her sport:

Her dad would take her to the golf course and he would tee off on the tee 300 yards and make her do these sprints over and over and over again.

I already knew she was going to kill it once she got trained. She was obviously very green and took time to train her, get her up to speed, but she’s unstoppable and she’s the best in my opinion. She is the number one recruiter in the game right now for healthcare staffing.

She’s currently in a director role. She actually took over my position after I left. She’s going to be a CEO one day if she wants to. She can do frankly whatever she wants, she’s unstoppable. Period.”

Tips To Separate Yourself From The Pack

Tips To Separate Yourself From The Pack

Managing Recruiters on LinkedIn

With so many communication streams, it can feel like it’s increasingly difficult to get anyone’s attention, and the traditional methods of calling and sending emails simply aren’t as effective as they once were. And, because we have so much more access to information through our social networks and the web, it can feel like your job is more difficult than it’s ever been. But the truth is, if you put all those resources to work for you, it can be easier to build a pipeline of future opportunities you can trust.

Today, the key is to act like a marketer.

The most successful professionals invest in their personal and company brands and actively engage with through branded content and influential communication, keeping their goals top of mind when it’s time to switch jobs. As a result, they’re able to capitalize on new opportunities and deepen existing relationships – and steadily grow their businesses.

What is a brand and why is it important to have one?

Your brand is the sum of all the experiences others have with you. It’s built from many things:  your track record, your relationships, and your approach. It includes your industry, company, and role knowledge. The stronger your brand is, the easier it is for clients and candidates to say “YES!”

Create a personal brand

It all starts with your LinkedIn profile. Viewing member profiles is the #1 activity on LinkedIn, so it’s likely that your profile may be the first place others go to research information on you and your background. Your profile offers them a snapshot of who you are and insight into how you can be of service. So it’s important to showcase your professional knowledge, capabilities, and achievements.


Here are some tips to separate yourself from the pack:

Enhance your profile

  • Engaging, friendly professional photo: Profiles with a photo are 21x more likely to be viewed.*
  • Descriptive headline: Your headline appears in search results, so make sure it’s clear. You can go beyond your title or role. What would stand out to a potential client?
  • Essential links: Include links to your firm’s website, LinkedIn Company Page, and anywhere else a client can go to learn more.
  • Killer summary: Overinvest in your summary. Use the first person. Give clients insight into your experience, success, and why they would want to work with you.

Include contact information

Add a handle, such as one for Skype or Google Hangouts. These are an easy way to communicate and send quick notes, rather than sending emails they may never see. And, if you add your professional Twitter handle to your profile, you can share LinkedIn updates on Twitter as well.

Add rich media

Showcase your achievements and your company’s capabilities. Upload links to videos about your culture, articles about your accomplishments, presentations you’ve put together, blog posts, and more. Consider recording a short video introducing yourself: who you are, who your audience is, and what industry trends might be affecting the public.

Get recommendations

Ask for recommendations from your peers, managers, and coworkers. This helps build your credibility and gives visitors a sense of what it’s like to work with you. Think about it: If a VP-level client gives you a recommendation, other VPs will see that you’re a recommended source and it could very well increase your chance of winning.

How To Manage Recruiters On LinkedIn (As A Job Seeker)

How To Manage Recruiters On LinkedIn (As A Job Seeker)

Managing Recruiters on LinkedInThere are two professions that dominate LinkedIn: Sales and Recruiting. How is one to handle the massive influx of invites, and what can you get out of it?

As a member of the staffing and recruiting industry, I see LinkedIn as a network of peers. For those who work in ancillary industries, I can think of three major reasons why it’s a good idea to accept invites from recruiters on LinkedIn.

Note: This is from my general experience. Your personal experience may vary, and as always – proceed with caution as not all invites have good intentions. Use your best judgment. However, as an active LinkedIn user for many years, I can speak to the incredible environment and opportunity created by LinkedIn. Let’s get started.

You grow your own network and become visible to more people.

By the nature of their profession, recruiters are typically very well connected. They leverage their countless happy hours, morning meetings, and conference calls by bridging your networks. You are inherently limited in your ability to network yourself, and you never know when you’ll get a LinkedIn InMail with a job opportunity. It never hurts to keep your options open. You don’t have to reach out, and it may be weeks, months, or years until you officially connect in person or over the phone.

You can build a relationship with them so they know what you are looking for and can help you find the next role.

So you’re looking for a new job? There are many reasons to reach out and take that first step to connect with a recruiter. If you wait until you’ job hunting, you’ll likely be at a disadvantage. The best option is to start a relationship early on. This will indicate that you’re already committed to a company. More importantly, don’t let the fact that you’re currently employed detract from the possibility of future opportunities. Reaching out today is better than reaching out in six months when you’ve already decided to leave, or worse – you’ve been laid off.

It will help you stay up-to-date with new roles in your particular industry.

Career paths change over time. Job titles change. Job requirements are modified to include new technologies and tools. One of the best ways to ensure career insulation is to constantly be aware of how your industry – including your company and competitors – is evolving in terms of how they view your job and what’s required or expected in new hires. Even veteran or senior roles may require new methodologies that, regardless how accepted it is within current applicants, will ensure that you stand out if you identify it as a key marker on your own resume.

Now, this is not to say that every recruiter has your best interests in mind. Rarely will you have that perfect connection that occurs when someone reaches out right as you’re exiting your current contract or employer relationship. You will surely begin to receive more messages, and when it turns to spam, LinkedIn helps you flag those individuals who take advantage.

The best thing to do is to connect with a recruiter that is aligned with your location and industry. Use this as an opportunity to grow your network. The right recruiters can be very useful for your career.

3 Underrated Metrics Your Recruitment Agency Should Be Tracking

3 Underrated Metrics Your Recruitment Agency Should Be Tracking

Are you sleeping on these valuable recruitment metrics? Check out these three underrated recruitment metrics and why they can help your agency.

Every recruitment agency has a hidden hub of valuable information with the power to transform its business—recruitment data. However, for a variety of excuses—competing priorities, a lack of reporting capabilities, or the reporting intimidation factor—many agencies don’t harness this data. Specifically, many useful and valuable metrics go completely unreported.

What do recruitment agencies track? Gross margin and customer satisfaction—recruitment pros rank these two metrics as the most important indicators of business health and performance, respectively. But there’s a lot of other great metrics that can be important indicators of your business’ performance, profitability, and future. Here are three metrics you may not be tracking but should.

Part-Time Jobs Teach Lifetime SkillsCandidate Satisfaction

If you read anything about the recruitment industry, you’ve probably read your fair share about the candidate experience. It feels like it’s all anyone can talk about, so surely recruitment agencies are measuring candidate satisfaction, right? After all, how can you accurately gauge the quality of your candidate experience if you’re not doing anything to measure it?

As you have probably predicted by its inclusion on this blog, a large percentage of recruitment agencies are not measuring candidate satisfaction. A whopping 2 out of 5 recruitment pros say don’t measure it on a regular basis, according to a survey of over 1400 recruitment professionals.

And that’s perhaps the reason for this disconnect. Ninety-three percent of recruitment professionals say the candidate experience they provide is good or excellent, while candidates often tell a very different story. For example, only 47 percent of candidates say they felt communication was consistent throughout their hiring process, according to a recent study by CareerBuilder.

Candidate satisfaction isn’t just about measuring the results, however. You can use your data to proactively make changes to your process and ensure a higher rate of satisfied candidates.

Customer Service & Support SkillsTime-to-Fill

Time-to-fill (the number of days a job is available and unfilled) is a super useful metric for measuring the speed and efficiency of your marketing strategy and long-term growth. A poor time-to-fill rate could suggest potentially serious operational efficiencies that could be costing your agency money.

Besides being an indicator of performance, time-to-fill is useful in other ways. It can help you set accurate expectations with a client when setting a time-frame for a placement. Clients cite poor communication as one of their biggest pet peeves, so providing them with an accurate placement prediction can go a long way into being transparent and reliable in the eyes of your clients.  You may also want to use-time-to-fill to inform your budget planning and resource allocation.

Yet despite its usefulness, recruitment professionals report little use of the metric. If you want a leg up on the competition, start tracking it now!

Sales Jobs Teach Life SkillsRatios

This last one is a cheat: recruitment ratios refer not to a single metric, but a whole category of metrics. Ratios are a way of tracking two data sets in relation to one another. For example, the ratio of interviews to placements.

This is critical for recruitment agencies because a candidate placement is the result of a long chain of actions. If any link in the chain is weak, it severely impacts the result. Ratios allow you to analyze every stage of the process to determine any potential inefficiencies.

The five metrics below all represent a fundamental stage in an eventual candidate placement. Track the relationship between each of the metrics to discover if there’s an unusual drop-off between any two stages.

  • Client Submission Count
  • Internal Submission Count
  • Job Count
  • Interview Count
  • Placement Count