Business development for recruitment agencies definitely has its challenges. You have a lot to contend with from finding qualified candidates and competing for top talent to attracting passive candidates and managing high turnover.
But the challenging, competitive nature of the recruitment industry makes creating your business development strategy all the more important. If you want to stay ahead, increase profits, and grow your business, that is!
Luckily, we're here to help with our complete step-by-step guide to business development for recruiters. In this guide, you'll learn when is the best time to create your recruitment business development strategy, why it matters, and how to do it!
Let's dive right in, shall we?
When is the best time to create a business development strategy?
Great question! Your business development strategy serves as a roadmap for growth and provides a clear understanding of the actions you need to take to achieve your business goals.
So it makes sense to revisit your business development plan regularly (like every six months) to ensure that it remains aligned with your current business goals and adapts to a changing market.
It's especially vital to update your business development plan during the startup phase, growth phases, periods of stagnation, and any time you pivot, or there are significant changes in the market.
What are the benefits of creating a business development plan?
You might be thinking, "our business is going great right now; why create a business development strategy at all?"
Well, with all the fantastic benefits of creating a business development strategy, you'd be mad not to! Here are just some of the benefits below.
By having a clear plan in place, your recruitment agency can prioritise its resources and focus on initiatives that are most likely to drive growth, increasing efficiency and productivity.
A well-crafted strategy can help recruitment agencies and hiring managers to make informed decisions by providing a framework for evaluating potential opportunities and risks - no more shots in the dark!
A robust recruitment business development strategy can help you stay ahead of competitors by tapping into new market opportunities and positioning your recruitment agency to take advantage of them.
By focusing on growth initiatives that are likely to generate significant sales, your recruitment agency can increase its profitability and improve its financial performance. Who wouldn't want that?!
How to create a smashing business development plan in 10 steps
Now you know why creating a business development plan is an absolute must for recruitment agencies, let's get into the how-to section of this guide, so you can create a killer business development plan, focus on the right business development efforts, and smash your business goals.
Step 1 - Map out the market
The first and arguably most crucial step in your recruitment business development plan is to map out your ideal customer. And the best way to do that is to actually interview your favourite existing customers.
Ask them why they chose you, love working with you, what challenges you helped them overcome, etc., to help you better position yourself to more prospective clients just like them!
Step 2 - Research potential clients
Another key part of your business development plan should be understanding exactly who you're looking for in a client and how their business operates. Take note of things like, company size, location, sector, how often they hire, whether they have an internal hiring manager or not, average revenue, etc. to inform your research.
Step 3 - Create customer segments
Now that you have a solid understanding of who you love working with and the prospective customers you're trying to attract, it's time to segment those customer profiles into different categories based on their distinctive wants, needs, and pain points.
Step 4 - Create targeted messaging
Determine what sets your agency apart from the competition and how you will communicate this value to potential clients and candidates based on the unique characteristics of each customer segment.
And yes, you need different messaging for each segment to draw them in - because they all have different needs! Make sure you're really speaking to each customer's pain points, segmenting and leveraging benefits and services that will resonate with them.
Step 5 - Define prospecting strategies
Ahh, our good old friend, prospecting. You shouldn't aim to make as many prospecting calls as possible, but instead, define what prospecting strategies will work best for your current business goals.
Whether it's networking events, prospecting calls, cold calling, warm calling, chasing demand, or using social media effectively to nurture customer relationships and drum up new business - define how, when, and why you'll engage in specific prospecting tactics.
Step 6 - Create your sales & marketing strategy
Most sales and marketing plans for recruiting business development will involve a mixture of search engine optimisation, paid advertising, social media, and prospecting to help you increase visibility and attract the right people to your recruitment agency.
Through your sales and marketing strategies, you should decide how to generate leads, build relationships with target clients, and promote your recruitment agency to potential candidates.
Step 7 - Establish metrics and KPIs
Identify the key metrics and KPIs that will help you measure the success of your business development plan for your recruitment agency and adjust your strategy as needed. Maybe it's taking on ten new clients by the end of the year, or reaching £100K in profits, for example!
Step 8 - Assign roles and responsibilities
You don't have to work on your business development alone! Clearly define the roles and responsibilities of each team member, and ensure that everyone understands their part in executing the business development plan.
Step 9 - Allocate resources accordingly
Determine the resources (financial, human, and technological) you need to properly execute your business development plan, and make sure that you have the necessary resources in place to achieve your goals and create more business success.
Step 10 - Implement and review
Now it's finally time to put your business development plan into action! But successful recruiters don't just put things into motion. To make the most of your plan, you will also need to track progress and regularly review and adjust your strategy to ensure you are on track to meet your goals.
Ready to tackle your recruitment business development strategy?
We're glad you feel more confident about setting your business up for more success with our step-by-step business development guide.
Whether you're a new recruitment agency, specialist recruitment agency, or generalist, we hope your new plan brings you many success stories!
If you want even more business development tips, why not talk to our recruitment experts here at Buchanan Graduate?
With in-depth knowledge of recruitment business development, we become almost like your business development manager, giving you the strategies, candidates, and guidance you need to grow your sales pipeline and attract more potential customers.
Using The Buchanan Blueprint, our proven 6-step process for finding, hiring, and retaining top graduate talent, we help recruitment businesses save on recruitment costs while securing eager, ambitious, and skilled professionals for their team.
Want to learn more and see how we can help? Book your fluff-free strategy call.