Navigating Security and Compliance Checks in Recruitment for Enhanced Efficiency and Candidate Experience

By James Chorley, EMEA Talent Solutions Director, RPO

In an era where security and compliance checks are taking center stage in corporate priorities, it is crucial to recognise their impact on strategic recruitment campaigns. The meticulous efforts of recruitment marketing and employer value proposition (EVP) teams can easily be compromised by a convoluted recruitment process, potentially driving away top-tier candidates.

In fact, recent surveys highlight that three-quarters of job seekers abandon lengthy recruitment processes. This underscores the urgency for organisations to optimise security and compliance checks to prevent potential top-tier candidates from losing interest.

Compliance Challenges for Lean Teams in High-Volume Recruitment

Devising a recruitment strategy requires careful consideration of security and compliance checks, documentation, and candidate data requirements. While experienced recruiters navigate vetting processes adeptly, lean teams face challenges in high-volume recruitment scenarios. Establishing clear guidelines becomes essential to ensure a seamless candidate journey, preventing dropouts and optimising the recruitment process.

Case Study: Transforming the Onboarding Process at Heathrow Airport

At Heathrow Airport, entry-level security employees undergo a comprehensive onboarding process, necessitating the submission of detailed job and address histories spanning five years before the vetting commences. As airports resumed operations post-pandemic, as Heathrow’s RPO partner, PeopleScout’s focus shifted to streamlining this process, ensuring swift candidate progression and minimising post-offer dropouts.

Candidate Hub Development

At the core of our candidate-focused recruitment journey was the creation of a candidate hub, featuring a unique section for individuals who had passed the initial stages of their Heathrow application. This hub aimed to guide candidates through every step of their journey while emphasising early preparation for the extensive onboarding requirements.

Streamlining Communication

To address the issue of candidates dropping out post-offer, we sought to reduce the volume of emails and attachments. Introducing a video-led section, we enhanced inclusivity by providing a clear understanding of the process. These videos, presented by actors and co-created with the Heathrow resourcing team, humanized each stage, informing candidates about what to expect and what actions were required.

Improving Accessibility and Understanding

The video-led approach not only simplified the onboarding process but also contributed to a 36% increase in the weekly volume of offers. By focusing on documentation and key information required for onboarding, candidates were equipped with clear instructions, fostering a sense of inclusivity and understanding.

Enhancing Candidate Engagement

A key objective was to ensure a welcoming candidate journey. We achieved this by implementing regular check-ins over the phone, personalized messaging, and managing individual queries. Additionally, informative webinars were conducted to provide candidates with a seamless experience.

Exceptional Candidate Feedback

The impact of our efforts was reflected in exceptional candidate feedback, with a Net Promoter Score (NPS) of plus 70. This underscored the success of our strategy in creating a more efficient, engaging, and inclusive hiring process at one of Europe’s busiest airports.

Dos and Don’ts for Managing New Hire Security Vetting Processes

To help you understand best practices for creating a friction-free vetting process while ensuring compliance, we’ve included practical tips to set clear expectations, provide context, and offer guidance, while avoiding overwhelming candidates with information.

Do:

  1. Set Clear Expectations Early: Clearly outline vetting requirements in the job ad or as part of initial pre-screen questions.
  2. Provide Context: Explain why specific checks are necessary for the role, helping candidates understand their relevance.
  3. Be Transparent about Onboarding Timelines: Inform candidates of the expected duration for the vetting process, ensuring alignment with their commitment levels.
  4. Guide Candidates: Offer advice on where candidates can obtain the necessary data, simplifying the information-gathering process.

Don’t:

  1. Overwhelm with Information: Avoid bombarding candidates with numerous emails and attachments all at once during the vetting stage.
  2. Neglect Reinforcement: Don’t go silent on candidates at this stage. Continually reinforce the reasons they applied and accepted the offer, emphasizing the value of the opportunity.
  3. Assume Uniform Understanding: Recognize that individuals process instructions differently, and provide information in a variety of formats, like bulleted lists and videos, to accommodate diverse learning styles.

Onboarding, Compliance and RPO

Crafting a considerate approach to security and compliance checks in recruitment becomes instrumental in fostering an exceptional candidate experience. Through proactive management of vetting requirements, transparent communication, and clear guidance, organisations fortify their defenses against talent loss. Even in high-volume scenarios, this approach ensures that the recruitment process remains not only efficient but also centered around the candidate’s needs.

At PeopleScout, we seamlessly integrate your go-to-market strategy with tailor-made solutions, ensuring candidates navigate the vetting process successfully. Our award-winning candidate experience solutions, combined with our renowned marketing strategies, form an ideal synergy. This powerful combination not only streamlines your pipeline but significantly enhances the efficiency of your funnel metrics.

Ready, Set, RPO: What to Expect in a New RPO Programme

Many companies see their RPO provider as only a vendor, but taking a partnership mindset creates a more satisfying, successful working relationship. Working well together as a united front always makes for an easier, smoother rollout with a new RPO programme.

The implementation and transition phases before and after a rollout are crucial, as this is when you set the tone and expectations for all involved. It’s also when certain issues need to be addressed and configured.

Recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) has evolved significantly over the past few years. Here are some key areas talent acquisition leaders should focus on when implementing a new RPO programme:

1. Identify Key Players Early in the Process

During the transition, one of the most important steps is to establish one key champion within your business. This person is your internal point of contact for RPO with the power to get things. There’s often a lengthy checklist of tasks that need to be completed before a rollout. The appointed decision-maker must be able to use their influence with HR, legal, IT and other stakeholders, including hiring managers and vice presidents, to get things accomplished.

Conversely, your RPO partner should also provide a primary point of contact who will work closely with you to navigate the implementation process. Effective communicate with your RPO contact will keep things moving forward.

Also, be sure to let your RPO team know who your internal stakeholders are (especially any unofficial ones) and how they may influence the implementation and rollout process. Loop your RPO team into conference calls and meetings so they can get a feel for the issues at hand and start building trust with stakeholders.

2. Clarify Expectations and Goals for Your RPO Programme

At the beginning of your toll out, have an open discussion with your RPO provider about what success looks like for your organisation today and going into the future. It may be helpful to hold a workshop to specifically determine what stakeholders want out of the RPO programme and how those goals can be measured.

Define clear, measurable goals aligned to business objectives like time-to-fill, candidate quality, requisition volume, diversity and more. Both you and your RPO team must work toward, and measure against, the same goals.

If historical data on key performance indicators (KPIs) is available, now is the time to provide it to your RPO contacts so they can use the data to set a baseline for future measurements. But if this isn’t available your RPO partner should be able to help you benchmark against other organisations.

👉 Debunk common RPO myths.

3. Foster Open Communication and Trust

This cannot be overstated: communication is essential to establishing a strong working partnership with your RPO provider. The more you communicate, the better your RPO team can serve you. The RPO team should ask your stakeholders about their experience, what they want to achieve with the new engagement and what potential obstacles the team might encounter.

It’s important to be open about what is happening in the company. If something is working against the RPO process, let the team know so they can work around it. For example, if you’re not documenting things in your ATS or if HR is performing tasks expected of the hiring managers, don’t hide it. It may not be the best practice, but if it works, and everyone is aware, that’s what matters.

Remember, RPO providers can only advise you on best practices; ultimately, they are there to serve your needs. Communicate openly, and your RPO team can make the decisions that will ensure you have a positive experience. The more collaborative the partnership is, the smoother the transition will be.

rpo programme

4. Invest in Change Management

A typical implementation for an enterprise, full-cycle RPO engagement is 30-60 days, with a 90-day transition period afterward. Modular RPO engagements will have much shorter timelines. No matter what RPO solution you choose, map your timelines out before beginning implementation, and stick to the timetable and deliverables. However, realise that you get just one chance to roll the process out well. Thus, you should keep your rollout date flexible enough to get the process right.

It’s also useful to set within your organization the expectation that the first 90 days of a new RPO programme are a learning curve for all involved. Proactively manage change by clearly communicating process changes, providing training if needed, and getting buy-in from hiring managers and other stakeholders.

5. Identify Challenges in Your RPO Programme Upfront

Don’t assume that your RPO provider knows what the potential hurdles to adoption will be at your organisation. Talk about your concerns and what you see as risks. For example, if a division has historically been run by a person with a negative view of recruitment who will likely go directly to a staffing agency or circumvent the process, share this with your RPO partner.

Together, make contingency plans to address how such situations will be handled, and categorise risks by the level of fallout that may occur. Be sure to discuss what kinds of issues are considered common mistakes and what kinds of things absolutely cannot be allowed.

6. Build an Agile, Tech-Enabled RPO Programme

Be prepared to work in an agile way, continuously optimising processes and innovating together. You should work collaboratively with your RPO partner to take full advantage of the latest recruiting technologies like AI-enabled sourcing, virtual interviews, chatbots, and more. Remain flexible and adapt to changing business needs and market conditions quickly.

Technology and automation enable your RPO provider to scale talent acquisition strategically to help you remain flexible and adapt to changing business needs and market conditions quickly. Technology can create a better candidate experience, facilitate better collaboration between recruiters and hiring managers, and equip you with better analytics so you can measure ROI.

RPO has evolved into a more strategic, technology-enabled partnership. By focusing on these key areas, talent acquisition leaders can ensure their RPO programme will deliver great talent and business impact in today’s world. Taking the time to communicate and build relationships with your RPO partner can make a huge difference in ensuring a smooth and successful rollout.

Recognising our Veterans

In June, we commemorate Armed Forces Day in the UK to show support for the men and women who served for our country. Serving veterans is central to our mission here at PeopleScout. We connect tens of thousands of veterans with work every year, and we have veterans working at every level of our company.


At PeopleScout, we believe in connecting veterans with meaningful work. We understand the unique challenges veterans and their families face as they balance a military career or transition into the civilian workforce. This drives our internal hiring and the work we do to help our clients enrich their workforces with veteran employees. That’s why we’re committed to hiring and supporting veterans and their partners, no matter where they are in their military journey.


For organisations who want to start a veteran hiring programme or improve one they already have, we’re releasing the ebook, Best Practices for Hiring Veterans. This ebook provides insight on the veteran talent landscape and the best practices to build an effective veteran hiring programme.

13 Best Practices to Hire Veterans

The veteran hiring landscape has transformed over the past few years, which means companies need to constantly evolve their veteran hiring practices to match the changing veteran talent market and the changing needs of veterans. To learn more, check out our ebook on, Best Practices for Hiring Veterans.

These are 13 best practices for hiring veterans we’ve developed working with our clients and nonprofit veteran groups.

Focus on the Entire Military Family

When building a veteran hiring strategy, start broad. While the veteran unemployment rate has fallen drastically over the past few years, veteran partners still have an unemployment rate of 18%. We live in a world where families need two incomes to get by. Military partners have valuable skills, including resilience and organisational skills honed through frequent moves.

Meet Candidates on Military-Friendly Job Boards

79% of job seekers use online platforms during their search for a role. Organisations looking to hire veterans should identify which opportunities fit with the skill sets of veteran candidates and post those jobs on veteran job boards. Meet veterans where they are.

Write Job Postings in Military-Friendly Language

Any jobs posted on veteran job boards or targeting these particular candidates should be written in military-friendly language. Communicating with veteran candidates in familiar language demonstrates an organisation’s military welcoming culture and commitment to veteran hiring. It also drives more veteran candidates because those candidates understand exactly what the posting is looking for.

Gain Executive Sponsorship for Your Veteran Programme

A successful veteran hiring programme needs to have strong commitment throughout the organisation from the top down. Executive sponsorship of veteran hiring programmes empowers everyone in the organisation to implement many of these best practices.

Create a Military Hiring Microsite

A distinct veteran careers microsite gives organisations the ability to speak directly to veteran candidates about their veteran hiring programmes and commitments. By creating a page just for military talent, organisations can demonstrate their commitment and direct veterans to opportunities that fit well with veteran skill sets.

Highlight Veteran Employees Who Have Made a Successful Transition to Civilian Employment

On your dedicated veterans’ recruitment page, organisations should showcase successful veteran employees, especially those who have been promoted and are building careers within the organisation. Many veterans say they take their first civilian job to make ends meet. However, 44% of veterans leave that job within the first year, often for a position with better pay and more opportunity for advancement. By communicating other veteran success stories, organisations can show their commitment to veteran careers rather than just veteran jobs.

Develop a Veteran Talent Community to Capture Both Active and Passive Candidates

For active candidates, a veteran talent community provides information about the job postings.It’s more nuanced with passive candidates. We know passive veteran candidates are often nearing the end of their military career and starting to think about the transition. As they finish their career, they may also be anticipating a move, and that might be holding back their civilian job search.

A veteran talent community helps nurture veterans through that process. We know it’s important to capture and communicate with passive veteran candidates because the earlier a veteran starts their job search process, the more time they have to find the right position. That means they won’t feel as pressured to take the first job offer they receive, whether or not it’s the right fit.

Form a Dedicated Veteran Sourcing/Recruiting Team Made up of Veterans Who Have Made a Successful Transition to Civilian Employment

Veterans report their biggest challenge in job hunting is deciding which career path they want to pursue. Talking to someone who has already gone through this experience can help the veteran work through this process and find a job that can become a career.

These veterans on this sourcing and recruiting team can also help veteran candidates tailor their CVs and practice for interviews. They can pull from their own experience to offer better advice and support.

Educate Recruiters to Read Military Cvs And Translate Skills so They Can be Advocates for Veteran Candidates

One of the biggest challenges in veteran hiring is moving part the knowledge gap most civilians have about the military. Recruiters need ongoing training about military CVs and skill sets because they need to demonstrate to hiring managers why a veteran candidate is a good fit for their position.

Create a Process to Screen and Prioritise Military Candidates

This process can look different for different organisations depending on their veteran hiring goals. To identify candidates, organisations can make sure a question in the application process allows veterans to self-identify. Then, it’s up to the organisation how much it wants to prioritise those candidates. One option is to emphasise veterans behind internal candidates but ahead of all other external candidates. Organisations can also decide if they want to advertise this prioritisation. Publicising it can increase the number of military applicants.

Create one Designated Point of Contact for all Military Organisations That Can Funnel Military Candidates

Across the UK, there are nearly 500 charities that support the Armed Forces community of approximately 6.5 million people. All of them can help funnel veteran candidates looking to make the transition into civilian employment. Having one contact that all of these veterans’ organisations can reach helps funnel these candidates into your recruitment process more efficiently. This can yield hundreds of pre-screened candidates a week. It’s free to source candidates from these organisations. Someone just needs to manage it.

Use Social Media Marketing to Reach Veterans for a Greater ROI Over Traditional Career Fairs

While more traditional veteran career fairs prove to be successful for some organisations, they are expensive. Using social media marketing can put job openings in front of more candidates for less money.

Establish a Veteran Affinity Group to Create a Supportive Environment for Veteran Employees

The process of hiring a veteran is just the first step. Think of the transition to civilian work as a process, and not just a job offer. A veteran employee resource group (ERG) helps veteran employees become a part of the culture and the team. Of the 44% of veterans who leave their first post-military job within one year, nearly one-third say they had difficulty relating to their coworkers and to the company. A veteran resource group provide support for recent veteran hire from people who have been through similar experiences and can boost veteran employee retention.

Want to know how PeopleScout recognise our UK veterans?

Dig Deeper

Best Practices for Hiring Veterans

Best Practices for Hiring Veterans

Best Practices for Hiring Veterans

If you want to hire veterans, you can’t just wait and hope it happens. Veterans won’t apply through your one-size-fits all careers page. Their skills and experience don’t fit into a standard application. And if veterans do apply, do you have a team that can understand the military language? Can you translate their achievements and place that veteran in the best position for their skill set?

In this ebook, Best Practices for Hiring Veterans, you’ll learn:

  • The most important and effective steps to take when creating a veteran hiring programme
  • The veteran hiring landscape
  • The unique challenges veterans face as they transition into the civilian workforce

The London Borough of Hounslow: A Collaborative Partnership Increased Their Offer Acceptance Rate to 87%

The London Borough of Hounslow: A Collaborative Partnership Increased Their Offer Acceptance Rate to 87%

The London Borough of Hounslow: A Collaborative Partnership Increased Their Offer Acceptance Rate to 87%

The London Borough of Hounslow were looking to source candidates that shared their values and vision as part of delivering their ambitions for a new Corporate Plan. For this, they required a RPO partner to develop a high-quality campaign to help build a new team. A key aspect was to build high performing teams from a diverse background with shared values.

87 % Acceptance Rate
65 % of New Hires Identify as a Person of Colour
39 % Boost to Social Media Engagement

Situation

In July 2022, the Cabinet of the United Kingdom approved a new Corporate Plan and the first version of a new Delivery Plan for the London Borough of Hounslow. The Delivery Plan sets out the first set of programmes to enable the Council to deliver its ambitions over the term of the new administration. This was large-scale, initially incorporating 19 programmes of work, with more to come in future iterations of the plan. To make this happen, they required a high-quality workforce to be execute on their ambitions.

Hounslow were looking for a recruitment partner to develop and deliver an innovative and high-quality recruitment campaign that would enable them to recruit across a range of roles in the corporate Project Management Office (PMO) and the Service Design and Transformation team, as well as other roles that were vital to programme delivery. It was critical that candidates aligned with the Council’s values and that the campaign reached those with diverse backgrounds and experiences from local communities and beyond.

Hounslow didn’t have the internal capacity or market knowledge to do this on their own. However, previous outsourcing interactions had been with agencies with a very transactional relationship. Hounslow felt this didn’t meet their needs, so they partnered with PeopleScout for a consultative approach, utilising RPO for the very first time.

Solution

In winning a 12-month award with the Council, our initial focus was on six key job profiles, hiring between 35 and 40 individuals. It was imperative for Hounslow to build a team with the right skills, experience and ambition to deliver the Corporate Plan.

Due to our initial success, we will continue to support Hounslow’s recruitment needs for another 12 months under the award.

A Consultative Approach

Our dedicated and skilled senior recruiters acted as brand ambassadors and became an extension of the in-house team, optimising and managing Hounslow’s recruitment process from attraction to offer. We managed each position in its entirety, from briefing through to verbal offer acceptance, including creating a sourcing and attraction plan for each role profile.

Keeping Candidates Engaged

Historically, the public sector has struggled to engage candidates. We utilised many touchpoints to improve engagement and retention rates throughout the candidate journey. Our dedicated recruitment marketer focused on creating engaging copy and provided recommendations on the best supplementary media options for the target audiences. This included a sourcing-led service, in which the focus was on brand awareness, targeting candidates within niche roles. This sourcing approach gained an engagement rate of 39% on LinkedIn.

Our recruitment marketing strategy included a social media attraction campaign to further increase Hounslow’s brand in the market. Social content included showcasing projects and testimonials from current employees. We also built a a landing page, for which we worked with Hounslow to understand and showcase their employer value proposition to boost talent attraction. This helped to increase brand awareness, bringing in higher quality candidates.

On top of these attraction efforts, we directly sourced passive candidates to raise Hounslow’s profile in the market and increase diversity within the talent pools.

“The London Borough of Hounslow has shown through their recruitment process that they are keen to remove unconscious bias and attract a diverse pool of candidates.”

Candidate feedback

Utilising Technology

As part of the project, we utilised our tech stack to enable better data capturing, to make better data drive decisions, to track and monitor their DE&I agenda and to provide a better overall candidate journey.

Throughout the project, we gathered market feedback and tracked hiring metrics, presenting data through bespoke dashboards to guide hiring decisions and educate. Hounslow received weekly reports from us, including regular analysis of market insights, salary benchmarks and candidate feedback.

Results

Our consultative approach to hiring and tailored strategies for each role resulted in:

  • An 87% offer acceptance rate.
  • An enhanced candidate and hiring manager experience, through a consultative approach.
  • Increased diversity within roles filled, with over 65% of candidates hired identifying as non-white.
  • 2:1 to interview-to-hire, exceeding the average of 3:1.
  • Increased social media engagement to 39%.

We have become an embedded and trusted partner to Hounslow, due to our effective articulation of their brand story, ambitions, and values to their target audience.

“PeopleScout ensured that communication and planning were at the forefront. What really set them aside is the time they spent listening and understanding what the roles were and what type of people we wanted.

The end result is that we trusted PeopleScout’s shortlisted candidates. The Hounslow Service Design team is now full of talented people with the mindset and values we share as an organisation.”

Mike Burch, Head of Service Design and Transformation

“The collaborative approach was key. PeopleScout took the time to fully understand our requirements and source quality candidates. We now have fantastic teams in place delivering great value to the organisation and residents of Hounslow.”

Kieron McQuade, Head of PMO

AT A GLANCE

  • COMPANY: The London Borough of Hounslow
  • PEOPLESCOUT SOLUTIONS: Recruitment Process Outsourcing, Talent Advisory
  • ABOUT LONDON BOROUGH OF HOUNSLOW: The London Borough of Hounslow is an area of West London, England, governed by Hounslow London Borough Council.

The Recruitment Handbook for Energy & Utilities

The Recruitment Handbook for Energy & Utilities

The energy and utilities industry is undergoing a massive transition as providers move to green and renewable energy sources and adjust to changing energy use patterns across the globe.

This means the sector is facing a unique set of talent challenges. In many areas of the globe, energy job growth is outpacing the rest of the economy. At the same time, the workforce is aging, creating a massive talent gap. In fact, according to McKinsey, the massive growth in solar and wind projects expected by 2030 will make it almost impossible to staff these projects with qualified development and construction employees as well as operations and maintenance workers.

Now, talent leaders need to think big—not just to attract more and younger workers, but to reskill workers in the shrinking fossil fuels industry and plan for the future.

In this handbook, you’ll learn:

  • Global trends driving the need for energy and utilities talent
  • Strategies for overcoming challenges in your energy and utilities hiring programs
  • How partnering with an RPO provider can help

University of Central Lancashire: Sourcing in Competitive UK Education Sector

University of Central Lancashire: Sourcing in Competitive UK Education Sector

University of Central Lancashire: Sourcing in Competitive UK Education Sector

As a leader in higher education in the UK, The University of Central Lancashire attracts students from around the world. However, filling a vacancy for Schools & Colleges Liaison Manager proved to be more challenging in a competitive market. PeopleScout delivered top candidates through a high-touch executive search engagement in just four weeks.

5 Secured five strong candidates for interview shortlist
90 Reached an audience of over 90 job seekers
4 Four weeks turnaround from briefing call to shortlist of candidates for interview

Situation 

The vacancy for the Schools & Colleges Liaison Manager position at The University of Central Lancashire had been posted to the university’s website and a leading UK job board for over 30 days with few applications received. The position was located in the West Midlands, home to many higher education institutions, creating a competitive environment for recruitment. 

Following a positive experience with PeopleScout as a job seeker, Adam Mitchell, Head of UK Recruitment at UCLan, engaged PeopleScout from the client side this time to address the challenges faced by the university for this role.  

Solution 

Knowing that today’s talent market consists mostly of passive candidates, our strategy targeted individuals working within the higher education sector and those employed by private training providers. Leveraging LinkedIn and the CV Library website, we looked for professionals with experience indicating a strong understanding of the education of young people aged 16 to 18 in UK, the student recruitment cycle and the University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) process.  

We also scoured the websites of other universities and colleges across the West Midlands region to identify potential candidates as well as individuals in learning and development roles at private training companies and other companies in the private sector.  

Throughout the project we continued searching to maximise our engagement within the target talent pool. We reviewed hundreds of profiles and approached 92 people, producing a shortlist of potential matches. Finally, we encouraged all candidates to provide feedback and recommendations from their networks to help us to grow the talent pool. 

Results 

Out of the 92 candidates we reached out to, a total of 49 people engaged with us, creating an engagement rate of 53%. In just four weeks, we were able to present a shortlist a of five strong candidates for consideration, who were sourced via headhunting and networking within our targeted talent pool. 

  • Reached out to 92 candidates 
  • 49 candidates engaged with us creating an engagement rate of 53% 
  • We presented a shortlist of five candidates who were invited to interview 
  • Two candidates passed to a second interview 
  • One offer was made 

“PeopleScout immediately understood the challenge we had in recruiting for a specialist position out of region and in an area awash with vacancies in similar organisations. The approach of understanding the role and the type of experience required, and then refining this through presenting a selection of candidate profiles, was excellent. I was reassured that the PeopleScout recruiter knew precisely what we were looking for. I was kept fully updated throughout, with regular conversations and emails. The shortlist provided was excellent, with all candidates suitable for interview. I was delighted to appoint a fantastic candidate who we would not have reached without PeopleScout’s efforts.” 

Adam Mitchell, Head of UK Recruitment at The University of Central Lancashire

AT A GLANCE

  • COMPANY: The University of Central Lancashire
  • ABOUT UCLAN: The University of Central Lancashire is an international university with campuses in Preston, Burnley, Westlakes in the UK as well as Cyprus. As one of the UK’s largest universities, UCLan offers 350 undergraduate and over 200 postgraduate programs, and the university is ranked in the top 7% of universities worldwide. Their community is made up of approximately 38,000 students from more than 100 countries around the world.

Reducing Time-to-Hire for a British Charity with a Bespoke RPO Solution

Reducing Time-to-Hire for a British Charity with a Bespoke RPO Solution

Project RPO

Reducing Time-to-Hire for a British Charity with a Bespoke RPO Solution

A higher education charity partnered with PeopleScout for a bespoke RPO solution, reducing time-to-hire for professional and academic roles, with a challenging four-week timeframe.

82 % offer acceptance rate
extended partnership beyond initial project
extended partnership beyond initial project
44 days from brief to offer acceptance

Situation

Our client, a charity, works with higher education institutions across the world to improve higher education for staff, students and global communities. The charity organisation needed to fill 30 roles across a range of job families and levels, including professional and academic positions.

They had a challenging timescale of just four weeks to go-live. Plus, they were facing several challenges, including an ambitious growth strategy to support their multi-year plan for which filling these roles was critical.

They engaged PeopleScout to augment their small in-house team, increasing capacity and boosting speed, through project RPO.

Solution

Our skilled senior recruiters acted as brand ambassadors and became an extension of the in-house team, optimising and managing our client’s recruitment process from attraction to offer for a four-month bespoke RPO solution. PeopleScout managed each role in its entirety, from briefing through to verbal offer acceptance, including creating a sourcing and attraction plan for each role.

As the client was a first-generation RPO client, we were able to quickly identify the need to make proactive recommendations based on labour market analysis and recruitment best practices, working collaboratively with the hiring managers. As part of the project, we utilised Avature to enable better data analysis. This helped the client to make better data driven decisions, monitoring their EDI agenda and improving the candidate journey.

Throughout the project, we gathered market feedback and tracked hiring metrics, presenting it through bespoke dashboards to guide hiring decisions. The organisation received weekly reports and regular analysis of market insights, salary benchmarks and candidate feedback.

We also leveraged the expertise of a dedicated PeopleScout recruitment marketer to create engaging copy and advise on the best supplementary media options to target our talent audiences. Our recruitment marketing strategy included a social media attraction campaign to further increase brand awareness in the market. Plus, we built a custom landing page, which showcased the charity’s employer value proposition (EVP), which help to attract high quality talent.

On top of these attraction efforts, our recruiters directly sourced passive candidates to further raise our client’s profile in the market.

Results

Our consultative approach to hiring and our tailored strategies for each role resulted in:

  • An 82% offer acceptance rate.
  • An enhanced candidate and hiring manager experience, which led to the charity extending the partnership.
  • An increase in diversity within the roles filled.
  • A reduction in average time from briefing to offer acceptance, which dropped to just 44 days

AT A GLANCE

  • COMPANY: UK-Based Higher Education Charity
  • PEOPLESCOUT SOLUTIONS: Recruitment Process Outsourcing, Talent Advisory

Apprenticeship Recruitment: The Key to Future-Proofing Your Talent Pipeline?

Apprenticeship recruitment has taken on more importance in early careers programs in recent years. In the UK, there was a 22% increase in interest in apprenticeships from young people in 2022 according to UCAS. In Australia, the number of organisations employing apprentices and trainees is at its highest level in over a decade with seven of the 10 fastest-growing jobs in Australia now accessible via an apprenticeship pathway.

Organisations and employees alike are waking up to the fact that many skills can be learned on the job—and that this is often more relevant training than a university degree. Whilst providing opportunities for hands-on experience and training, apprenticeships also help businesses to develop a talent pipeline that is equipped with future-ready skills.

Whether for workers just starting out or those changing careers, apprenticeships help people gain valuable skills and on-the-job experience as they move toward a career in their field. For employers, field and business apprenticeships are one of the best ways of engaging early careers talent or career changers.

In this article, we’ll explore how designing and offering apprenticeship programs can be a smart way for organisations to create their own talent pipeline, close their skills gaps, and diversify their workforce.

What is an Apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship is paid employment that offers on-the-job training and is often accompanied by classroom-based learning. Some employers may offer their own in-house training while others offer it in association with a college, university or other training provider. An apprenticeship must last at least a year but can go as long as 5 years. Through in-depth, job- and industry-specific skills training, apprentices gain a nationally recognised qualification or certification upon completion.

Apprenticeship programs are a great choice for individuals who are early on in their careers, who are looking to upskill or who are exploring a career change. Employers are responsible for ensuring that apprentices work with experienced staff, learn job-specific skills and receive time off from work to complete their classroom training.

Different countries have different laws and regulations around apprenticeships including wages and working hours. There are also various funding programs and government schemes available to encourage both workers and employers to embrace apprenticeships. For example, the UK Government introduced the (controversial) apprenticeship levy in 2017 which uses business taxes to fund apprenticeship training. The Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Program gives eligible employers in priority list occupations (ranging from aged care and dentistry to various engineering roles) wage subsidies for offering quality apprenticeship training programs.

Manufacturing Recruiters

Types of Apprenticeships

Types of apprenticeships differ from region to region. In the UK, a common misperception is that apprenticeships are just for manual or skilled trade jobs. Whilst there are many apprenticeship programs in the skilled trades, there are also apprenticeship opportunities for all kinds of careers from actuaries to arborists. For example, our client, National Highways, offers apprenticeship opportunities for project management, business administration, legal, surveying and data analysis.

In Australia, apprenticeships are offered for skilled trades, whilst traineeships are for other vocations in sectors like hospitality, digital media and financial services. Organisations are increasingly embracing corporate apprenticeships and traineeships as a means of diversifying their workforce and creating opportunities for social mobility.

There are different levels of apprenticeship including degree apprenticeships which correspond to an equivalent education level. In the UK, completing a Level 2 apprenticeship is the equivalent of completing a GCSE, and a Level 7 apprenticeship is the equivalent of completing a master’s degree. In Australia, apprenticeships are typically delivered through Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) and State or Territory Training Authorities and span levels from Certification II through to advanced diplomas.

Benefits of Apprenticeships for Employers

Apprenticeship recruitment can be an effective way of growing and upskilling your workforce. Here are just a few of the benefits for employers.  

Building a Talent Pipeline

Companies in a variety of industries can build their own apprenticeship programs to help talent see the rewarding career opportunities available within their sector. As apprentices gain experience, organisations establish a pipeline of prospective employees.

Early careers employees see apprenticeship programs as proof of an organisations investment in their success and are more likely to stay with an organisation after completing the program. In fact, 90% of qualified apprentices stay on with their employers upon completing their training, and 69% of organisations say that employing apprentices has improved retention. Clearly, apprenticeship recruitment is an excellent way to “grow your own talent” and reduce attrition.

Closing Skills Gaps

According to McKinsey, a whopping 87% of organisations are aware they already have a skills gap within their workforce or will experience one in the next few years. Apprenticeships offer a way to develop a new generation of workers to help your organisation succeed into the future. A structured apprenticeship is an effective way to get a leg up in recruiting and retaining sought-after talent like software developers, data analysts and engineers. Indeed, 86% of employers said that investing in apprentices helped to develop relevant skills for the organisation.

The digital skills gaps alone could cause 14 G20 countries to miss out on a staggering $11.5 trillion USD in cumulative GDP growth. In the UK, companies like Dyson are partnering with the University of Warwick to offer apprenticeship training in agile software development, data science and machine learning. Meanwhile, automotive giants Ford and Enterprise are joining forces to offer technical engineering focused apprenticeships.

Boosting Diversity & Social Mobility

A third of employers agree that apprenticeships have helped improve diversity within their business. They are particularly effective for creating career opportunities and boosting earnings for workers from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds.

As more people struggle financially with student loans and education costs, apprenticeships have become an accessible career path for workers of all ages and backgrounds and give participants a shot at career success. They allow workers from underrepresented groups to increase their earnings potential—to work and earn money in the field while they learn. If your company cares about being a catalyst for sustained change in the community, apprenticeships are a great way to achieve this.

RPO + Apprenticeships

As a leading recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) provider, PeopleScout helps organisations to obtain the talent and skills they need to succeed into the future through early careers recruitment solutions covering interns, graduates and apprenticeship programs. Unlike apprenticeship recruitment agencies, as an RPO partner our expertise in talent acquisition strategy and workforce planning means we’re better equipped to successfully integrate apprentice programs into your overall talent attraction and training strategy. Plus, we have experts on staff that can design an assessment centre that evaluates apprentice candidates against your organisation’s values, culture and other requirements.

webinar on-demand

ASSESSMENT STRATEGIES FOR TOP EARLY CAREERS TALENT