IT Staffing & Recruitment Business: From a Balanced-Score Card Perspective

IT staffing industry & recruiting, like any other industry, has evolved tremendously in last two decades. But since the pace of technology has increased multifold in last few years which lead technology organizations to venture into many new unheard technologies, this shift in technology trends forced staffing companies to be more dynamic and adaptive in nature to cop-up with the hiring needs of new technology faces. From the times of “Employment agencies” with complete focus on permanent hiring to the time of “Staffing Agencies” with divided focus on multiple forms of hiring activities such as Permanent, Contract and others, staffing Industry has experienced it all. With the increasing new forms of hiring activities adding to the portfolio of staffing organizations, many new factors have been added to the list of consideration which could actually affect the game if overlooked. To beat the fear of these factors affecting their game, staffing companies have shifted their approach a bit and they have added the flavor of strategy to their planning and relying on these new strategy frameworks to match-up and even getting ahead to the current pace of industry. One such standard strategic framework which, if used effectively, can help businesses across the industries go miles is “Balanced Score Card“.

“The Balanced Scorecard is a framework to translate an organization`s strategy into terms that can be understood, communicates, and acted upon. It is therefore not a management control system, but a Strategic Management System.”

The most unique feature of balanced Score Card is that helps in mapping the intangible assets of business organizations. Considering the evolving trends in industry, many companies have started nurturing their intangible assets. The current interest in balanced Scorecards reflects the increasing dependence of all organizations on their intangible assets, and of the need to engage employees in pursuit of strategies where the long term development of such assets is a key to business success. This need is more apparent in organizations where many employees have customer contacts and where long term success is highly dependent on interaction with customers and other external contacts. Staffing is one such industry wherein every single recruiter is the face of an organization she works for. Hence the importance of their roles increases multifold in comparison to the industry wherein only a fix set of people are responsible for interacting with external stakeholders. So such organizations need to spend time and effort learning about their environment, their databases & systems, and creating positive attitude towards the organization among all stakeholders. That is where Balanced Scorecard could guide and help.

Staffing companies of the world need to understand the fact that accepted and widely taught metrics such as “Return on Capital Employed (ROCE)” are of limited interest in the initial phase of their organization building process. The hidden or immeasurable metrics which comes in frame here is called “Intellectual capital” which staffing organizations need to build considering the nature of business they are operating into. This metrics is not measurable, hence cannot be shown on balanced-sheets of staffing organizations, but they need to understand the fact that such intangible assets could be the factor in exponential increment in their market valuation.

Since many things remain immeasurable, hence one question that still remains unanswered is how to set the relevance of this globally accepted framework to the internal activities of staffing and recruitment. One will be amazed at how important the right perspectives are in defining the success or failure of business strategies. Recruiters by nature are aggressive, sales-oriented, people persons who become successful through their network of contacts. The thing that transforms a recruiter into an owner is his or her ability to drive a mulch-faceted team on different initiatives, yet convergent goals. The Balanced Score Card provides a recruiter the methodology to define, communicate, measure and manage their process strategy to achieve their ultimate financial goals.

No doubt that financial target is the ultimate goal of any business but the beauty of this framework is the balanced way it has been framed. The Financial and Customer perspectives (External factors) are actually achievable only when one smoothly and swiftly executes the Development and Process Perspectives (Internal Factors). This is where a Balanced Score card can help Staffing and recruiting firms in segregating their set of activities under four perspectives heads and can help in distribution of available resources in external and internal factors to make the whole process more productive and result-oriented.

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