No matter what the business climate, growing your staffing business is always a challenge. When the economy is strong, employers think they can fill positions on their own. When business slows down, they don’t want to spend money on staffing.
So, how can you keep your business steady no matter what the economic conditions?
Here are several best practices to follow:
Keep your pipeline full. When you’re getting plenty of business from current clients, it’s common to neglect your pipeline. But it’s critical to have prospects in every stage of the sales process to ensure that you have incoming revenue at all times. Set aside time each week to follow up with employers in every part of your funnel.
Analyze your existing customer base. An unfortunate reality of the staffing business is that turnover is very high. Clients drop out over time (even the best ones), and you must be ready to replace them. To identify the best prospects to target, take a look at your current clients. Which ones give you the best ROI? Do you do well in a particular niche or with businesses of a certain size? Make an effort to bring in more of those types of customers and avoid those who bring you more stress than revenue.
Recruit from inside your database. If you need to beef up your candidate base, the best resource may be right at your fingertips. Reach out to those who have worked for you in the past and see where they stand. They may be once again looking for employment or may be able to lead you to qualified candidates for you to consider. Referrals always bring a better return than cold recruiting does.
Become a thought leader. Show your authority. If you have a specialty niche or tons of recruiting experience, there are people just dying to learn from you. Publish in industry media, blog and take any opportunity to speak before an audience. You’ll have the opportunity to network in person on the spot, or establish yourself as a go-to person when people need an expert in the future.
Share success stories. Nothing beats social proof. Solicit and share testimonials, so prospects know that you’ve done a great job for people just like them. Add a testimonial feed to your website. Share your customer stories on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Monitor review sites to make sure all your hard work isn’t undone by bad reviews.
Get on their radar. The best business development strategies begin with relationship building. Earning the trust and eventually business of employers is a long process; you can’t drop the ball when you get busy. Follow up regularly with a combination of email and phone contact. Develop an ongoing marketing plan to make your firm stand out.