Internal or External Recruiter: Which Is Right for Your Business?

Filling open positions at your business can be difficult, especially in more competitive industries. The hiring process is often exhausting, but employers looking for new employees have options: hire an in-house recruiter, or use recruiting technology. Both can make searching for new hires in a tough market a little less stressful.

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"It seems like every company and its dog is trying to hire for developers, sales and marketing right now. When the candidates have the ball (as they do right now in tech companies), it can take hundreds of interviews just to find a candidate who hasn’t left halfway through your process to go take another job," said Michael Overell, CEO and co-founder of recruiting platform RecruitLoop.

Hiring a recruiter or using recruiting technology are both great solutions for finding new employees. Regardless of which route you choose, it's important to weigh the pros and cons.

In-house recruiters

"In-house recruiters can be awesome. They understand your culture and your business, so they can be the first screener, making the shortlist process much easier. They will also standardize your recruitment process, which helps manage your line managers' and candidates' expectations during the process," Overell said.

While having an in-house recruiter can vastly improve your company's hiring process, there are also some pitfalls. [5 Common Hiring Mistakes and How to Avoid Them ]

If your company is going through a growth spurt, for example, your recruiter can run out of energy and resources, or "bandwidth," Overell said. This can cause your hiring managers to start competing for time, and thus, harder or lower-priority roles will remain unfilled for months, Overell added.

Other cons, Overell said, are that in-house recruiters can be territorial in that they won't use external recruiters even when they need help because they're worried about their job security, and that in many cases, they're limited to their networks. While external recruiters are limited much in the same way, Overell said that using more than one external recruiter as opposed to one internal recruiter can allow employers to reach candidates in several networks.

Recruiting technology

"As far as recruiting technology goes, it's an overall pro - you can significantly speed up your recruitment processes and it makes managing tons of candidates and interviewers much easier," Overell said.

Using recruiting technology is one way to sidestep the issues that come with hiring a recruiter, but it doesn't come without potential problems, either.

Overell said that some recruiting technologies just won't work with your established internal processes and may try to shoehorn you into their workflow.

"On the other side of that spectrum are technologies that work a little too well with your processes, which means that they'll just do bad processes faster (assuming that your internal processes are broken). If you’re experiencing process pain, bringing in technology to fix it won't help," Overell said.

All in all, employers should do research and consider what's best for their business. The recruiting methods you choose depend on what works well for your needs and for your employees.

"Put a dollar value on your time and your opportunity costs in order to properly evaluate your recruitment solutions. If you look at internal time spent as zero cost, you’ll hold back your business and exhaust your hiring managers. You must count their time spent hiring and what internal projects it's costing you in order to properly evaluate recruiting solutions," Overell said.

Originally published on Business News Daily.