9 Pros and Cons of Using a Staffing Agency

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There are plenty of reasons you may consider a staffing agency to help your company find the right employee for your next role. Perhaps you have a small, growing company and can’t afford the time to look for new staff. Maybe you need to hire temporary workers on a large scale and need to do it quickly. If you’ve considered using a staffing agency for your company’s hiring needs, you may be wondering if it is worth the cost.

While there are pros and cons of using a staffing agency to find the right employees for your business, only you can decide if it makes sense to use their services. Sometimes the fit comes down to timing—you may need to urgently hire for a specific role. Other times, it is about numbers—you need a large group of temporary employees, ready for a specific task.

To help you think about the whole picture, we’ve put together nine pros and cons of using a staffing agency:

Pro: Faster Hiring Times

There are many pros and cons of using a staffing agency. The biggest benefit is definitely the faster hiring times. When it comes to finding the right person for the job, a staffing agency has a distinct time advantage. They not only have a pool of vetted candidates, but also a streamlined hiring process in place.

If your organization is on the small side, or overwhelmed with day-to-day operations, this kind of infrastructure and support will likely come as a relief.

Con: Added Cost

Every business needs to be conscious of how and where they spend money. Using a staffing agency to fill available roles will come at an added cost. Agency rates usually vary, based on the nature of the role, degree of specialty required and/or the starting salary of a permanent position.

While it may be worth the cost for you to use a staffing agency, it is not a fixed cost—your business can choose to take on the recruiting task itself.

Pro: Access to Specialized Certification and Talent

Whether you are looking for a programmer with java expertise or temporary workers with WHMIS training, you likely have a list of must-have skills for your new employees. A staffing agency can help you find a talent pool with specialized skills or certification. Where required, they can also perform testing, to make sure employees have specific skills or knowledge.

Con: Culture Gaps

While a staffing agency can reiterate a description of your corporate culture, only a member of your team can describe what it is like to work for your company. Sometimes corporate culture comes down to a feeling that is hard to put into words. In this case, only being at your organization, breathing the air and feeling the culture first-hand, will allow a potential employee to understand what your company has to offer.

Pro: Freedom from Recruiting

Searching for new employees can be a significant undertaking. With the time it takes to advertise, sort through resumes, interview candidates and check references, you may wonder if it is worth your time. When brought in early on the hiring process, a staffing agency can take a load off your plate, allowing you the freedom to focus on the rest of your business.

Con: Branding Gap

Some companies have a widely-recognizable brand. Just about everything they do contributes to their overall brand, including the way they seek out new employees. If your company is on the larger side, with a brand that people know and trust, it may be important to be visible as you recruit and promote new talent.

Pro: Lower Hiring Risks

A distinct advantage to using a staffing agency is their ability to vet candidates. By screening potential employees, performing relevant testing and checking references, they are far more likely to deliver a higher quality candidate. Screened candidates usually have lower hiring risks—less chance that they will underperform or will not be truly qualified for the job.

Con: Missing Out on Unspoken Qualities

Sometimes, the very best candidate for the job comes down to a quality that can’t be listed on a piece of paper. If you are a hiring manager and trust your instincts—your ability to read people and identify quality candidates based on more than their resume—you will likely want to do your own research and recruiting. In this case, only personalized interviews will help you find the employee you are after.

Pro: Specialized Support

Many staffing agencies specialize in specific industries, giving them the right knowledge and language to talk about jobs and specific tasks in detail. If your industry is served by a staffing agency, it might be worth the cost to bring them alongside you in your hiring efforts, acting as a trusted partner.

We hope this list of ideas on the pros and cons of using a staffing agency have helped you to weigh the benefits and drawbacks of using these services.

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