The recruitment sector is rife with tech options. In this video, RGS IT MD Rob Holmes explains how to determine what your organisation needs so that you can focus on the areas that add most value and prioritise your investment correctly.
The importance of IT and getting the priorities of IT investment right within the recruitment business can’t really be overstated. It’s a fact that many people perhaps overlook.
A very significant, if not large majority of the recruitment business is an information business because you are literally matching information on candidates with information on positions and bringing them together.
And there’s more to it than just pure information, of course, there is, but it’s a very significant part of the game, is information. And therefore it stands to reason that if you don’t invest adequately in your information technology, then your business will suffer as a result.
So, IT must be right at the core of any recruitment businesses’ strategy. It has to be a central pillar of that business. Otherwise, the business isn’t really understanding its priorities properly.
Once you’ve done that, it’s important to ensure that your data doesn’t reside in isolated silos, because it’s very, very easy to fall foul of that. You put in place a large number of disparate systems, each of which carries out a specific function within an ecosystem of applications and IT that you put together. But then somehow the data doesn’t flow between them and it gets stuck within each individual part of the system, and that’s an easy trap to fall into. Indeed, many, if not most businesses do fall into that trap.
So it’s fair to say that the IT landscape within a recruitment business is going to involve quite a large collection. It could be four, five, six, ten different significant applications that handle various different aspects of the recruitment process.
It’s very important when you’re considering how to implement this kind of technology, to consider integration as being part of the plan. You can’t just buy these applications or rent them, because a lot of them are software as a service now in the cloud. You can’t just start using these applications and expect everything to go smoothly.
You will have a fairly significant task involved with integrating them together in a way that suits your particular business and the way you do business in the industries within which you operate. And that integration is really quite a significant undertaking or can be, certainly. And the aim of that integration is to ensure that data flows seamlessly between the applications.
So when somebody’s timesheet has been approved, then the invoicing data can go into the invoicing system. Somebody doesn’t have to sit there and enter an invoice, which is what very often happens.
The other aim of the integration is to avoid double keying because double keying happens all the time. It’s the simplest way for people to envisage getting data between systems. Go back to our invoicing example. It’s just easier for somebody to sit down and tap in the numbers into the account system to raise the invoice. But that’s a really bad way of doing it, because not only is it slow, it’s expensive because it uses a human resource and they’re expensive. And humans, with the best will in the world, are not great at being highly accurate. So, if you’ve got several hundred invoices to enter, if you haven’t typed in them, there’s a good chance that any number of them will be inaccurate, and that’s not great because your customers get upset with you and you have to start doing repair works and credit notes and all those sorts of things. So, accuracy is important, not just speed. But speed also, when you’re avoiding getting double keying.
So yes, you’ve got to prioritize your investment in IT, carefully. And you’ve got to consider the applications you’re going to use, carefully. But then you’ve got to consider how you integrate those applications into an ecosystem that works for your business.
And at that point, once you’ve done that, you will really start to see a decent return on investment from the IT because it’ll really start working for you.
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