Five ways to control your agency spend
By Andrew Pirie
It might feel like an impossible task to control your recruitment agency spend. However, there is a way to break the cycle and take control of agency costs. In fact, there’s not one solution, but five. When combined, they can improve agency staffing performance and increase vacancy fill rates to over 80%.
Now, agency staff are an incredibly valuable resource, but they could and should be used more efficiently. It helps if we look at some of the common issues a ‘traditional’ agency may struggle with, including:
No shows and guilty of ghost bookings
Maintaining fill rates for out of hours, weekends and bank holidays
Compliance – both in terms of safeguarding and IR35
Supplying staff at capped rates of pay
Lead times and shortage of suitable candidates
These all contribute to unnecessary expenditure and workforce instability. They do nothing to relieve the long-term reliance on agencies.
That’s why we take a much more flexible approach to vendor managed services, erasing all those challenges whilst identifying viable alternatives to agency. We do this in five ways.
1. Staff Bank Technology
A real staff bank technology breakthrough, our staff bank offers private healthcare groups, NHS trusts and local authorities far greater flexibility and maximises the effectiveness of their current bank staff pool.
Employers using our system report bank fill rates of over 80%, even for tricky vacancies.
Shifts can be uploaded day or night, any time and are automatically filled, removing agency dependency.
The system meets the demands of the worker with easy access to shifts and same day payroll
If a shift is released at midnight for 8am, there’s no reliance on the agency contacting the candidate as candidates have direct visibility of the available shifts, and they will receive live notifications of shifts becoming available.
This makes it far easier to fill vacancies with your contingent workforce rather than having to reach out to an agency.
2. Managed staff bank
Using the same technology, we can recruit directly into your staff bank, increasing your bank fill rate whilst reducing your agency requirement. This enables us to side-step the agency worker in favour of available bank staff at a lower rate. When delivered at volume, the cost savings are considerable.
3. Real time Management Information (MI)
Our MI platform provides hiring managers with clear and accurate live reporting. It shows where recruitment spend is high, and helps you make changes.
Essentially, it takes the ‘work’ out of workforce management and reduces agency spend by giving you:
Control of your recruitment budget by tracking spend and ensuring process compliance
Instant visibility of your placements to enable better decisions with real-time data
Far greater ability to manage risk and compliance
The ability to track and manage performance
Reduced recruitment lead times and workload by automating back office admin
The opportunity to reduce costs by highlighting areas of overspend
NHSI Reporting made easy aswe can automate these reports saving you countless hours of compiling this information
"Sanctuary’s soft recruit vendor management system has made managing our agency bookings far easier. We now have instant visibility on all placements without having to search through multiple emails from agencies.” Staff Bank Department, Tallaght University Hospital
4. Permanent Recruitment
You may feel as if you’ve exhausted your options with permanent recruitment. Admittedly, competition is fierce, especially within major cities and rural locations. However, through carefully managed targeted outreach, we can recruit permanent employees, even in areas that find it a real struggle.
At the London Borough of Redbridge, we’ve made 96 permanent placements in four years and in Croydon, we’ve seen 51 job offers in just 9 months. Both employers were going through their own improvement journey and struggling to recruit before Sanctuary Personnel was appointed on a ‘no placement, no fee’ basis.
5. International Recruitment
In our experience, NHS Trusts and local authorities stabilise their workforce through international recruitment and drive down agency expenditure.
Tapping into a global workforce will allow you to find highly-qualified candidates who are looking for permanent employment in the UK.
With hubs in the Philippines, India and several countries in Africa and across the Caribbean, we’re carefully nurturing an international community that employers can tap into. Candidates go through a robust pre-screening and compliance process and are supported at every stage of their relocation.
For the employers we work with, their ‘agency reduction’ solution blends the above options.
To discuss how Sanctuary Personnel can help you get on top of your agency spend, simply call 0333 7000 020.