For businesses looking to increase their workforce, but avoid increasing the hours spent by existing employees conducting labor intensive recruitment searches, outsourcing has proven to be a key solution for time and cost savings. Application Service Providers (ASPs) are meeting the needs of this market.
Corbis spent countless hours managing between 200 and 500 emailed resumes a week. “We were struggling with managing the enormous volume of resumes and needed a smooth recruiting process that was efficient and effective for both recruiters and hiring managers,” says Kory Avaiusini, corporate recruiting manager for Corbis, a Seattle, Washington-based provider of digital images to both consumer and creative professional markets such as advertising agencies, book publishers and photographers.
Avaiusini explains that recruiters at the firm, which currently has 1,200 employees worldwide, were managing job postings and collecting resumes from four job boards at the same time. With the manual handling of the applicant tracking process, Corbis was unable to build a valuable resume database and capture or track important information related to each candidate.
Eliminating Cost and the Dependency on Outside Recruiters
“These issues, along with the need to save costs and not be dependent on outside recruiting agencies or headhunters, made finding a streamlined way to handle HR internally a very important initiative,” explains Avaliusini.
Finding a solution was even more significant for Corbis because the firm was in the process of launching a global presence, which demanded an efficient and scalable recruiting system. So the search began for an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) that would allow recruiters to have access to one searchable resume database.
After purchasing a list of potential ATS options, Corbis narrowed its choice to three firms whose demos seemed to meet with its needs and expectations.
Outtask Inc., an Alexandria, Virginia-based ASP, was one of these providers. Coincidentally, its New Jersey-based sales team had previously approached Corbis in the autumn of 2000, just before Corbis started researching possible ATS solutions. “Outtask originally called us when we weren’t ready to start looking at systems, and we called them back after we did our research,” explains Avaliusini.
Corbis went on to select Outtask’s OpenHire ATS, a product the ASP has offered since its inception in 1999. Along with additional ASP-delivered services, OpenHire ATS is designed to help streamline customer relationship management (CRM), financial management, sales force automation, and other business processes.
According to Thomas Depasquale, Outtask’s founder and CEO, OpenHire specifically looks to control agency fees, costs per hire, management of external sources and job boards, and provides tools to manage corporations’ recruiting Web sites.
Adoption Rate for Hosted HR is Picking Up
Depasquale says that choosing an ATS like OpenHire is wise from both a business and technology standpoint. “It makes sense, since automating the recruiting management process is not a business function that offers most companies a strategic advantage,” he explains.
Amy Levy, senior analyst at Boston-based Summit Strategies, Inc. agrees: “There’s been a much greater market adoption for outsourcing hosting services that aren’t necessarily core to a company or impact how it competes. There isn’t an inherent advantage in firms managing or hosting HR systems like ATS internally,” she says.
For Corbis, the important benefits of partnering with a third party to take away HR administration headaches but still keep the firm’s strategic edge were the time and money saved.
The immediate benefits Corbis saw from the OpenHire ATS implementation were:
- A centralized recruitment team ready to help grow the company.
- A system that efficiently manages and tracks 500 – 1,000 resumes per week
- Real-time reporting that enabled managers to effectively analyze its recruiting costs and processes.
Avaiusini says: “We had a part time temp whose time was spent managing job postings. Using OpenHire eliminated the need for this because we could post jobs at the click of a mouse. That saved us money as well.”
Outtask implemented the OpenHire solution on schedule. Avaliusini says that within five weeks of purchasing the software, Corbis recruiters were using the system. Additionally, Outtask provided on-site training to Corbis’ Seattle, Los Angeles and New York offices within a single week.
Avaiusini says the relationship with Outtask is ongoing: “We are always talking with Outtask’s customer service about new enhancements and suggestions we have. I also talk quite frequently with the original sales representative and trainer when we get new recruiters and need training,” he explains.
Reengineering the Recruiting Process
DePasquale sees OpenHire as a service provision that allows companies to re-engineer their recruiting processes and sees adoption of these applications on the rise. “Many companies are already using third party providers like Monster or HotJobs outside of their existing IT infrastructure,” he says. “The next broadening acceptance is being able to post, capture, manage and track those resumes against posted positions on job boards.”
Levy states that firms that have already gotten a taste of some of the cost and time efficiencies that can be gained from outsourcing certain HR activities are more likely to adopt Web-based solutions. “Solution areas like recruiting will become a competitive differentiator on some level. When firms see competitors gaining huge efficiencies through outsourcing to a supplier in a hosted form, this is where there is likely to be a groundswell,” she says.
Lessons from the Outsourcing Journal:
- The recruiting process is not a core business process for most companies. Neither is application hosting. Outsourcing certain HR activities saves time and money and aids in HR reengineering.
- Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) significantly reduce costs spent on third-party recruitment agency and implements a more efficient and effective recruiting process.
- There will be a groundswell of acceptance as the marketplace understands the large efficiencies outsourcing the HR recruiting process creates.