It's often said that an organization's most valuable asset is its people. Many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) all over the world are currently working hard to survive amid the challenges of COVID-19, so they  will be relying on the productivity of their workforce more than ever.

For some, there will be opportunities for growth in the 'new normal' created by the pandemic, which will mean new talent requirements.

As you navigate this environment and focus on the goals you want to achieve this year and beyond, the services of a dedicated HR partner could make a vital contribution to your outcomes.

Here are five of the most compelling reasons to work with an HR services company:

1. Time and cost advantages

Saving time and cutting costs are common priorities for most businesses. They are particularly important for SMEs with limited resources and a need to find and hire the right people with maximum efficiency.

There are clear risks that firms need to be careful to avoid in this space. It has been estimated that the typical cost of replacing an employee after a bad hire is 21% of their annual salary.

Furthermore, the average time to fill a vacancy - before COVID-19 - was 36 days. This is likely to have changed given the rise in unemployment caused by the pandemic, but employers still need to be aware of how much time they're spending on hiring. 

One of the key benefits of working with an HR company is being able to find the people you need quickly and efficiently. Staffing specialists know how to leverage the latest HR technologies and access high-quality talent pools to optimize your hiring and minimize risk.

2. Access to qualified talent

Identifying and acquiring the right talent is a major challenge for companies in various sectors, particularly those operating in highly technical industries with specialist skills requirements.

Research has shown that 49% of SMEs across the world see the lack of skilled staff as the greatest obstacle they need to overcome.

COVID-19 has driven up unemployment and increased the number of people looking for work in many countries, but firms that struggled to access skilled candidates in niche segments before the pandemic are likely to face the same difficulties in the months and years to come.

There are various ways the right HR partner can help you manage this issue, such as giving you access to high-quality talent pools filled with people who have previously delivered results for businesses with similar needs to your own. You can also benefit from the latest innovations in HR tech to enhance your talent search.

3. Flexibility

SMEs often need to be prepared for periods of rapid growth, change or unpredictability, which means your hiring practices need to be agile and responsive.

That's much easier to achieve if you're working with an experienced, knowledgeable HR partner that specializes in finding flexible solutions to the needs of businesses like yours.

If you're currently in a growth mindset, for example, an HR company can help you find highly qualified people who have gained valuable experience in one sector and want to develop their careers in another. These sorts of candidates are ideal for businesses targeting growth.

Or you might be looking for large-scale, sustainable flexibility across the workforce, possibly because you're dependent on high-volume, seasonal labor. An experienced staffing firm can provide the support and expertise you need to meet this challenge.

4. Next-level planning

Planning and anticipating workforce needs is a common HR challenge. This is particularly true for SMEs that might have fluctuating or unpredictable labor requirements, but don't have the time or resources to dedicate to workforce planning.

HR services companies can help you understand and meet your human capital demands by supporting you through processes like:

  • Analyzing workforce data to identify gaps and predict future need
  • Leveraging and redeploying existing resources
  • Scheduling staff based on real-time data and updates

Optimizing your workforce planning is crucial if you want to make the best possible use of your human resources and prepare your business to succeed.

5. Balancing tech with the human touch

Technology has an essential role to play in practically all aspects of life and work in the 21st century, including how businesses find the people they need. However, it's important to remember that recruitment is about much more than gaining maximum efficiency through technology. There's a fundamental human element, too.

That's why Randstad has made the concept of Tech & Touch a key part of our strategy. This demonstrates how partnering with an HR company can help you keep up with the latest innovations in HR, without losing sight of the all-important human factor.

Randstad has created a guide to provide more insights into our staffing solution, as well as other topics like:

  • The different staffing options
  • How billing works in the staffing world
  • Partnership examples
about the author
SOFIE M

Sofie Maervoet

vp global concepts staffing

Sofie is one of the staffing leaders in Randstad with a track record in process optimization, training and coaching. She started her career as a staffing consultant in Randstad Belgium in 2002. Later, she joined the team in Randstad Switzerland as concept manager until she joined the global concept development team in 2018.