Talent acquisition isn’t for the faint of heart.

According to SHRM, the average organization has 2.5 HR workers for every 100 employees.

For enterprise companies, that number (surprisingly!) plummets to just a single HR rep. If you’re a recruiter or hiring manager, the pressure is on to accomplish more with less.

To ease the stress, HR teams are increasingly looking for outside help. Outsourcing talent acquisition is a popular way to attract, hire, and retain talent — but it’s important to understand the pros and cons. In this article, you’ll learn five benefits of recruitment process outsourcing, plus some potential pitfalls, and how to avoid them.

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1. More Efficient Hiring

Hiring is a high-stakes game. The average cost-per-hire is $4,700, and that price only increases for more extensive hiring processes. Talent acquisition outsourcing takes the burden off employers, by placing the responsibility on external stakeholders.

For example, you might use talent acquisition outsourcing services to make a particularly difficult or time-consuming hire, such as adding a C-suite executive to your team. The typical executive search can last two to three months — a far cry from the national average of 23.8 days.

Yet outsourced talent acquisition isn’t just for C-suite hires. It can slash 99% of the time from:

  • Job post creation
  • Job posting to multiple job boards
  • Sourcing candidates
  • Processing high candidate volume
  • Screening resumes
  • Conducting one-way video interviews
  • Administering pre-employment assessments
  • Reference checking
  • Interview scheduling
  • Communicating with candidates throughout the recruitment process
  • Onboarding

When you outsource your recruitment, the burden of all those time-sucking tasks is shouldered by your talent acquisition partner.

At the same time, it can ensure a higher quality of hire, since tapping into the expertise and experience of a talent acquisition partner that specializes in recruitment.

2. Lower Recruitment Cost

Talent acquisition outsourcing services are designed to hire talent less expensively. Most services charge a flat fee or a percentage and include all aspects of recruitment, from pre-screening to reference checking. Rather than pay a premium for individual tools that handle separate features, you can bundle all your hiring needs for one consistent rate. 

For instance: Say you pay $800 a month for a resume parsing tool, $1,500 for pre-screening assessments, $1,000 for interview software, and $1,200 for applicant tracking. Those tools alone add up to $4,500 — and that doesn’t account for labor. A talent acquisition outsourcing firm may charge a flat rate of $3,000 per hire placed, saving you money if you only occasionally hire.

Pro Tip: A single performance hiring platform like Discovered bundles all those recruitment tools and more into a single dashboard, costing just a fraction of outsourcing talent acquisition.

3. Lower Workers' Comp Cost

The average workers’ comp settlement is about $41,000. Consider that 3% of workers file for comp claims, so the damages can quickly rack up — especially when your HR team is buried in work and can’t hire as accurately as they’d like.

Outsourcing talent acquisition ensures your hiring process gets the attention it needs. While you’re still susceptible to comp claims, the best talent acquisition firms will test for workplace integrity and other predictors of high performance. That pre-employment testing lowers your workers’ comp costs through improved recruitment efforts.

For instance, the Integrity First test is proven to slash workers’ comp costs by a staggering 57%.

4. Lower Turnover

50% of employees say they’re contemplating leaving their organization — and culture is largely to blame. According to MIT research, a bad culture is 10 times more likely to drive people away than bad pay. The implication is clear: HR teams need to work harder to create a culture where people feel they belong.

Yet, HR teams are stretched thin. (Remember — 2.5 HR workers for every 100 employees.) They can’t build your culture if they’re caught up sifting through endless resumes. Talent acquisition outsourcing firms can handle the monotony of hiring, so your in-house team can focus on retaining the people you’re bringing into your organization.

5. Faster Time-to-Hire

Time-to-hire has increased by 40% in a post-COVID world, with the toughest jobs to fill taking upward of 50+ days — twice the national average.

When companies outsource talent acquisition to third parties, they gain the benefit of a streamlined hiring pipeline without the headache of upkeep or regular process management. If you take 20 days to hire someone when your competitor takes 40, you’re positioned to steal top talent in half the time.

Why You Shouldn’t Outsource Talent Acquisition

Talent acquisition outsourcing can be highly effective, but it’s not without its drawbacks. The biggest: It’s expensive. The average outsourced talent acquisition service costs about 10% of a new hire’s starting salary. If a new hire makes $50,000, their placement fee would be $5,000, which is $300 more than the average cost-per-hire.

Is it possible to find cheaper talent acquisition partners? Sure, especially if you look overseas. Careful, though: These firms are far removed from your business, and you get what you pay for. The cheaper the outsourced services, the less incentive the service has to find high-quality, long-lasting talent for your team.

Discovered: All the Benefits of Outsourcing Talent Acquisition — None of the Cons

Talent Acquisition OutsourcingDiscovered - Performance Hiring Software Time
$5000 per candidate$249 per month
Job post creationAI job post creation
Job posting to multiple job boardsAutomatic job posting to multiple job boards
Sourcing candidatesSourcing candidates
Processing high candidate volumeProcessing high candidate volume
Screening resumesScreening resumes
Conducting one-way video interviewsConducting one-way video interviews
Administering pre-employment assessmentsAdministering pre-employment assessments
Reference checkingReference checking
Interview schedulingAutomated interview scheduling
Communicating with candidates throughout the recruitment processCommunicating with candidates throughout the recruitment process

Discovered isn’t just another applicant tracking system. Unlike high-cost outsourced talent acquisition, Discovered gives you the tools to make best-fit hires at a fraction of the price. Our platform pairs applicant tracking with modern AI to streamline your process, automate busywork, and increase your quality-of-hire.

Better Sourcing

Discovered uses AI to help you write compelling job ads in seconds, then push them live to popular job boards like LinkedIn and Indeed. As applicants flow in, Discovered’s AI will automatically parse resumes that match the job listing.

Better Screening

Send out science-powered pre-employment assessments with the click of a button, and prequalify a shortlist of standout candidates. If you’re worried about workers’ comp claims, Discovered also uses integrity tests, shown to reduce claims severity by 23%.

Interviewing candidates used to be a hassle, but Discovered simplifies the process. Our one-way video interviews let candidates record their answers asynchronously, so you can review them at your own pace. Even reference checking is automated. Discovered follows up with hard-to-find references on your behalf, eliminating the headache. Get candid feedback from previous supervisors and spot red-flag candidates a mile away.

Efficient Hiring at a Fraction of the Cost

By streamlining the hiring process, Discovered ensures a smoother candidate experience from job ad to job offer. Cut down on candidate ghosting, and hire strong-fit candidates who are more likely to succeed. We even provide onboarding assistance so new hires don’t miss a beat.

Discovered packs the power of outsourced talent acquisition but doesn’t drive up your cost-per-hire. Pricing starts at $249 a month for unlimited hires. You could place an entire department using Discovered and still not come close to the price of a single outsourced hire.