Guide to Finding and Retaining Staffing Agency Clients in 2022
November 30, 2021
Staffing agencies face a competitive market when it comes to sourcing and retaining clients. There are, in fact, over 25,000 recruiting and staff agencies working across the US that help to make sure businesses are running smoothly. What this means is that finding and retaining clients has become a huge focus for staffing and recruitment agencies looking to maintain and grow their business.
In a market saturated with staffing agencies offering talented employees, it is even more important for your agency to stand out from the crowd. This includes putting in the work and finding the right clients for your agency as well as retaining them later down the line.
What’s more, as we venture into 2022 and edge closer into the post-pandemic world, both staffing agencies and potential clients are going to need to make adjustments to the way they work. The labor market has fundamentally changed over the last two years, with labor shortages, the so-called “great resignation”, home working, and demands for greater flexibility all having an impact. So in order to stay ahead of the game and to maintain those important client relationships, agencies must adapt to this new reality.
So how do staffing agencies find those all-important regular clients and what are the best practices when it comes to retaining them?
How do staffing agencies find clients?
Generating leads and finding clients might seem like an ongoing process for staffing and recruiting agencies. You can always work on building your client base and growing the company, as long as you have the staff to support you. So, how do staffing agencies find clients?
- Recognize and cater to your niche
Before you start looking for clients, you want to make sure that your staffing agency is 100% ready. One of the best ways to attract the right clients is to be an expert in your field. Having the specialized knowledge in a certain area of work, as well as trained staff to complete the job, will work in your favor when approaching potential clients.
Finding and defining your niche is actually one of the first things you should do when starting a staffing agency in 2022. However, it is also something that you can continue to finetune as you go forward and expand your client base. By selecting a niche, such as the medical field, administration or hospitality, you can instantly narrow down your competition and make your employee search more refined.
When selecting an appropriate avenue, you should assess whether the field is financially sound and if there is enough local supply and demand in your area. You need to also identify what clients are looking for in your relevant field and how you can best deliver their needs.
Once you have chosen your niche and recruited the right staff, you need to start focusing your search on companies that would make a good client. Research is key!
- Invest in the right marketing strategies
There are several key staffing agency marketing strategies that you should focus on when trying to secure new clients. From social media marketing to content marketing, it is vital you are exploring several avenues in order to help you stand out from your competitors.
Social media marketing is considered one of the most important marketing channels in the staffing field. According to a poll by Buffer, 89% of marketers acknowledged that social media was “very important” or “somewhat important” to their marketing strategy. And, a good social media strategy can dramatically improve your chances of securing good, returning clients.
The aim of your social media strategy is to get noticed, get followed, and become a leading voice in your field. To establish a solid social media strategy, you should know your audience and identify any traits that are particular to them – such as how they engage with social media. You also should decide what platforms you plan to use and know their strengths – for example, the viral nature of TikTok is strikingly different from Twitter.
You can then start to make targeted social media ads and track how your audience interacts with your content. Your strategy should be so focused that you know how often to post and what time of the day you experience the highest traction. Part of your social media agenda should also include responding to comments, conducting polls or competitions and making engaging posts that potential clients might interact with.
Aside from your social media strategy, you should also look into creating SEO-optimized content on your website and external publications. By establishing a reputable online presence across such platforms, you can set yourself above competitors and give you the edge when finding clients.
- Build a strong network
After cementing your staffing agency’s niche and optimizing your online presence, you are now ready to start networking. The majority of staffing agencies will adopt a number of networking strategies in order to connect with a wider client base. While these tend to yield slower results, it is another effective strategy when it comes to establishing yourself as the go-to staffing agency.
Attending trade shows and local business events as well as connecting with business leaders on LinkedIn can help your company branch out. What’s more, you can also conduct in-depth job searches on LinkedIn and approach employers with suitable candidates.
Having a good network also means that you have the opportunity to find more clients through them. Perhaps one of the oldest tricks in the book is asking for referrals, and word of mouth certainly goes a long way! Offering incentives for happy clients to recommend you is also a great way to encourage them and a fantastic way to find new clients who trust your services.
- Develop a good outreach strategy
In order to excel at finding clients, you need to make sure that your company is running like a well-oiled machine. What that means is that you should also assess if your team is using their time in the best way.
When it comes to outbound client sourcing, you need to look carefully at whether your outreach strategy is as effective as it could be. What’s more, nowadays it needs to be way more strategic than simple bulk email campaigns.
Ask yourself, how many potential clients are your team reaching out to? Are these emails personalized toward the client? And, are you investing enough time into follow-up calls?
In order for marketing to work well, you need to know when companies are conducting rounds of recruitment and who you need to speak to. Identify the people within the company that are responsible for carrying out the recruiting process before reaching out.
What do clients look for when hiring a staffing agency?
When up against thousands of rival agencies that also promise to deliver the same service, clients will carefully assess whether you are the right staffers for the job. So what are they looking for from a reliable staffing agency?
- The staffing agency knows their niche
This one is pretty straightforward, but you need to be experts in your field and constantly develop your knowledge of the industry that you specialize in. Read industry publications to look out for any key players you should know, any mergers that might be of interest, and upcoming events.
- That you are carefully recruiting candidates
Usually clients outsource to a staffing agency to save them time during a tedious recruitment process. So they expect you to be extremely thorough when sourcing and vetting candidates. Clients will therefore want to know how you source your candidates, what background checks have been completed, and any other information relevant to the roles they will be occupying.
- If you are using up-to-date technology
To have the edge over other staffing agencies, you should be thinking about the technology you can implement to streamline the process. Investing in effective staffing recruiting and tracking technology is the best way to achieve this step. These can include real-time updates about available talent and can help you match the correct person to the job.
- You understand their long-term business goals
Every client wants to make sure they are working with talent who share their values. This means you need to have a good understanding of what the company is about and why specific candidates would be perfect for the role in question.
How to retain staffing agency clients in 2022
The best way to retain staffing agency clients is to continue nurturing those important business relationships and delivering excellent service. In fact, improving the management of client relationships was voted one of the most important features in this Recruitment Trends survey.
By keeping clients happy, you’ll build a book of returning business that will help you to scale your agency. What’s more, loyal customers who are happy with your service are more likely to recommend you to others – which will help you to further grow your client base.
While it may be obvious that retaining clients is vital for any agency, what might not be as clear is how to best achieve this.
- Keep on top of workplace trends and be ready to adapt
While many companies have already adapted their working patterns in response to the pandemic, this is likely to continue in 2022. Many employers recognize the benefits of flexible working patterns and remote access to meetings and team members.
According to findings by Everhour, 16% of companies already hire and operate on a completely remote basis – and this percentage will go up. The research concluded that 91% of workers also preferred to have a flexible work schedule. What this means is that your staffing agency must be quick to adapt to the way the workplace is evolving.
What’s more, the talent that you source needs to be able to seamlessly adapt into a company and contribute to “business as usual”. Providing candidates with training on the latest technology used in business might be a good place to start – especially if you’re filling more specialist roles.
By offering trained talent who are ready to work digitally, you can easily establish yourself as a reputable agency to which clients will want to return.
- Continue development and training to make your agency stand out
As a result of pandemic trends, offices are rapidly advancing and incorporating technology that can optimize remote work and safer environments. Take the time to assess your payment structure and reaffirm your business goals. What’s more, don’t overlook training and development courses for the senior members of your team as well as your talent.
Technology is one area that your staffing agency should be focusing on in 2022, as it is transforming the recruiting world and making staffers lives a lot easier. From streamlining data collection to speeding up reporting and analysis, this is something you shouldn’t overlook.
Timerack’s tracking system is just one step that your staffing agency should be taking to retain clients. If you integrate your management systems, you can spend less time on tedious data input and payroll processes, and more time on focusing on what the clients want from you. What’s more, the latest technology will also shave off costs, further allowing you to invest in other important areas such as marketing.
Make sure that your clients also know how your technology works, so that it can be used easily by both sides. This means keeping clients informed about the latest updates and how it will benefit them.
- Invest in technology that makes your clients’ lives easier
Simply providing great talent is no longer enough for a staffing agency to stay ahead of the competition. You must also make your clients’ lives as easy as possible. No business wants to commit more resources than is absolutely necessary when managing their staffing provider.
Thankfully, there are plenty of tech solutions on the market that help streamline your client management operations as much as possible.
Top of your priority list should be billing. Making regular mistakes with client billing is a surefire way to damage a relationship and it creates a terrible impression. Platforms such as Timerack’s integrated time & attendance devices and billing software integration enable you to track employees across multiple assignments and in multiple locations, then seamlessly import this into your accounting software, which all but eliminates human error.
Reporting is also crucial when trying to build trust with clients. In depth dashboard reports provide complete transparency on the service you’re providing and how each employee is contributing to your clients’ businesses. For example, Timerack’s staffing agency software provides automated reporting at the employee and department level, enabling a detailed analysis of each employee on assignment.
- Consider a personalised approach and build loyalty
The final point to remember is that no two businesses are the same. As a result, you need to provide your clients with confidence by making their experience personalized and allowing them to feel valued.
You want to keep them informed of any upcoming plans you have for your agency and even encourage them to get involved. Sending out a regular email update, personalized to each of your clients, might set you above the rest. Furthermore, you should make note of any important dates that your client might have – such as a work anniversary and keep an active communication with them.
The other way to build loyalty is to offer incentives to clients that have stuck by you. Discounts for more talent placements or bonuses for referrals can go a long way in keeping your client happy and returning.
The bottom line
Like many areas of business in 2022, staffing agencies are also evolving quickly to the demands of up-to-date technology and changing work patterns. And, in order to successfully find and retain clients going forward, you need to keep ahead of the curve and be ready to adapt.
Creating a flexible work model and putting together a good team that truly understands this can set you on an excellent trajectory for the coming year.