Why Does Offshore Recruiting Fail?

There are a whole slew of reasons that an offshore recruiting partnership can fail, but none of them are impossible to overcome. More often than not, it comes down to the quality of the offshore partner – if they’re not willing to fully prepare you for what to expect from the outset, things may go downhill. Here are some common follies we’ve heard from companies, and some simple ways in which to avoid them.

1. Domestic Team Feels Threatened

Let’s not tiptoe around it – there are many instances where working with an offshore partner fails because the internal recruiting team fears the offshore team is coming to take their jobs. The truth is, in a properly handled partnership, the offshore team’s role is to support internal recruiters, not replace them. Setting this expectation up front is crucial to the success of an offshore partnership and will drastically improve your internal team’s attitude toward your new recruiters. Something companies like 247Hire do is run a trial of services with your team so they get a feel for what it means to work alongside an offshore team and fully understand they are an expansion, not a replacement.

2. Offshore Isolation

While they may physically be a world away, you want to do everything you can to make sure your recruiters – both domestic and offshore – don’t feel that way. Isolation becomes inevitable when offshore talent isn’t not constantly connected with your domestic team. So, include them on your morning calls. Send them swag with your company logo on it. Share their successes with the rest of the company. Treat them like a member of your team and make them feel the love the same way as you would with any of your domestic recruiters and it’ll feel like they’re in the next office over.

3. Lack of Timely Feedback

When a partner client does not provide timely feedback (or doesn’t provide any feedback at all) it tends to discourage both the offshore and domestic recruitment teams. Feedback is crucial so that everyone understands what is expected of them in their roles, successes are celebrated, and missteps are properly adjusted. Lack of feedback leads to lack of motivation. Weekly or bi-weekly calls to discuss feedback with offshore operations can be crucial to its success.

4. Unrealistic Expectations

An offshore partner needs to fully educate clients on what to expect from an offshore team. Clients often employ an offshore team simply to help them fill positions they’re having difficulty filling, and end up unsatisfied. While an offshore team can expand your reach, there’s no magic wand that’s going to make a difficult requisition easier for an offshore team to fulfill. Where an offshore partner is really going to excel is in working either on new open positions, or on specific areas/end clients that your domestic team isn’t focusing on.

5. Lack of Long Term Commitment

An offshore partnership isn’t going to fix your recruitment processes overnight, within a week, even over the span of a month. There is always a ramp up period, and the offshore partner needs time to learn and fully understand how you and your recruiters work in order to form a quality partnership. The standard timeline for clients seeing measurable ROI is 2-to-4 months or even as long as 6 months. After that initial ramp up, it’s much easier to increase or decrease team size as needed.

6. Not Armed for Success

A client must provide an offshore partner with the tools required to succeed. If you opened a new office domestically, you’d arm your new team with the same tools you’ve armed your existing recruiters with – Applicant Tracking Systems, chat programs, job boards etc. So why would it be any different bringing on new recruiters at an offshore location?

But we get it, many businesses have sensitive information that they don’t want to go handing out across the globe. That’s why any worthwhile offshore provider is going to offer suggestions like permissions-based access for the offshore team so they can only access information you want them seeing, or signing Non-Disclosure Agreements.

7. Overlapping Efforts

You wouldn’t hire an entire new team of recruiters to have them work on the exact same reqs that your existing team is working on, right? Same goes for an offshore partnership. An offshore team is an extension of your own, not a resource to have double-checking the work you’re already doing. Set out everything you want an offshore team to work on before partnering up.

8. Team Grows Too Fast

Just because an offshore team is more cost-efficient than a domestic one doesn’t mean you should bite off more than you can chew. Especially in the initial months of the partnership, it’s important to get a smaller core team onboarded to your way of doing business so that if and when you’re ready to bring on a larger offshore team, there is already a base of support.


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