Add Split Placements in 2020!

by Veronica Blatt

NPAworldwide will celebrate its 64th year of facilitating split placements next year, so it’s fair to say we’re biased on this topic. Splits are an excellent way to diversify your business focus. They can help you increase your geographic reach. Splits also offer economical business expansion for boutique recruitment firms. If any of these items keep you awake at night, consider adding splits in 2020.

Diversify Your Business

Split placements can help you fill roles in additional occupations and niches. If your engineering client suddenly needs a CFO, a good split partner means you can say yes with confidence. If your niche is softening, let your split partners serve as your business development division and source candidates for THEIR jobs.

Increase Your Geographic Reach

Do you have the ability to source candidates in Germany when your client opens a new manufacturing facility there? Are you knowledgeable of the salary and compliance laws in Australia? How do you interview candidates effectively with a 9 hour time difference between your locations? Many recruiters are intimidated at the prospect of accepting global assignments. Split placements are a perfect solution. Your in-country partner can help source and interview candidates, and may also be able to assist in the details of the offer, local business customs and more.

Economical Business Expansion

As a business owner, you’ve likely grappled with how to effectively grow your business. In many instances, real growth involves a significant investment of capital. Since the outcome is not guaranteed, it’s a risky model. For recruitment firms, it typically means hiring additional recruiters. In turn, you may also need to provide equipment, software, tools and support, and training. You’re committing to ongoing overhead costs with no guarantee that they will be productive enough, all the time, to cover those costs. Split placements mean reaching out to trusted partners when you need them. You don’t need to train them or purchase a LinkedIn seat. When the role is filled, you’re not continuing to pay. If managing people is not your strength, this model will reduce the amount of time you spend on that activity. In turn, that gives you more time to spend on placement activity.

Split placements are not a magic pill to cure all of your business pain, but when done properly can be an outstanding supplement for your firm.

Recruitment Marketing – Social Media Stats that will drive your strategy in 2020

by Veronica Blatt

Today’s guest contribution is from Amanda Davies, a marketing consultant and business coach with Green Umbrella Marketing – a recognized brand known within the recruitment industry for providing social media management services, coaching, design and online marketing strategies.

We are suddenly sprinting towards the end of 2019. As usual it seems, we’re commenting ‘where has this year gone.’ Well, in the blink of an eye it will be 2020. A new year and a new decade. Where will this take your recruitment business?

Hopefully you are ahead of the game and are tuning into your marketing strategy for the next 12 months. What has worked for your recruitment business this year and, as a result, where are you going to show up next year? What’s your focus, which events should you attend, how do you leverage any big brand developments to get candidates flocking to you, and clients knocking on your door with placements?

Measuring recruitment return on investment (ROI) is often a sticking point with marketers. It is incredibly difficult to measure definitive ROI when it comes to marketing. Candidates or clients will rarely choose you as a result of one singular piece of marketing activity. It takes multiple touch points before there is any signing on the dotted line. It’s often better to focus on key performance indicators (KPIs) rather than a direct ROI.

As a result of those multiple touch points you need to ensure your recruitment marketing strategy keeps your business visible in the right places over the coming year. Looking at social media in particular, what have we learned about recruitment marketing over the last 12 months that we should be keeping in mind for our 2020 strategy?


  • Facebook is still the biggest social media platform by far (both in the UK and globally). It has 2.41 billion active users and is the world’s third most visited website after Google and YouTube. (source Hootsuite)
  • Research shows that 74% of Facebook users log in daily, and they spend an average of 38 minutes per day on the platform.
  • In the UK 70% of UK adults have at least one social media account, and 1 in every 5 minutes is spent on social sites. (source Ofcom: Online Nation)
  • Use of Facebook owned platforms WhatsApp and Instagram has grown over the last 12 months with 1.3 billion and 800m users respectively.


  • Over 200 million people visit a least one Instagram business page per day. However, demographics of Instagram users in the UK are heavily in the under 34 age-bracket, with 66% of users falling in this range. (source Statista)
  • It is still one of the most popular and growing social media channels, both in the UK and globally. Use of ‘stories’ is also increasing. This is the 24 ephemeral content that appears at the top of the feed. Use of stories hit over 500 million users daily this year.
  • In fact, behind Facebook, YouTube and messaging platforms – it is the platform accounting for the largest market share. (source Smart Insights)
  • The top 3 reasons people engage with businesses and brands on social media is to ask a question, discuss an issue or to praise the product or service (via Sprout Social)


  • Twitter has 134 million daily active users and is mid-level in terms of its popularity as a social media platform
  • Good for sharing content and up-to-the-minute news, it satisfies our thirst as curious, demanding consumers
  • Twitter has (arguably!) a more mature user demographic with 63% of users between 35-65 years old, with more men than women on the platform. (source Oberlo)
  • Your tweets have short life span so don’t be afraid to repeat yourself or share links to the same content but with different support commentary
  • For larger recruiters it is still a fantastic platform for controlling your brand narrative, responding to comments good or bad and, for any size recruiter, for sharing content and engaging with your audience.


  • LinkedIn is still viewed as the professional social network and is popular with recruiters and job seekers globally. It’s also a valuable place for showcasing skills and sharing content
  • Think of LinkedIn as a search engine, every post and piece of content on it is indexed and is searchable – great for your SEO juice!
  • This year Linked added new features enabling you to post downloadable documents, as well as videos and images to support your posts, make use of this
  • They also added a feature that alerts employees when new company content goes live to drive engagement on these posts
  • LinkedIn has over 610 million users with just under half of these active users. As a platform it is responsible for 80% of B2B leads from social media (source 99firms)

WhatsApp, Messenger and TikTok

  • TikTok is the fastest growing social media platform. If you have teenagers in your life, you will know it’s hard to extract them from it. It is particularly popular with under 25’s so unless you are marketing to that age demographic, just be aware of TikTok but put it to one side for now. It may become more mainstream in the next 12 months. We have had these conversations before about Facebook and Instagram so keep TikTok on your radar.
  • WhatsApp and Messenger are increasingly popular and acceptable ways of communicating for businesses. Remember you can use desktop platforms for both.
  • You can automate replies and engagement on WhatsApp and Messenger, and both are aiming to increase their B2C footprint.
  • This year WhatsApp enabled businesses to showcase products and services, almost as a catalogue to potential consumers – or in recruitment terms, for candidates.


  • Video is not going anywhere as a means of creating, sharing and digesting content. YouTube is the second largest social media platform behind Facebook
  • In terms of recruitment, video adverts and interviews have shown a 47% increase female applicants
  • Video adverts are shared 5 x more than text-based job ads (both stats via Video My Job)
  • A staggering 9 in 10 internet users visit YouTube every month, spending an average of 27 minutes a day there (source OfCom)
  • Video content does not need to be high-end, or Hollywood budget productions but think about how you can introduce video content to your strategy.

We could write a blog for how to leverage each of the above platforms for your recruitment marketing strategy. There are certainly enough statistic out there to explore. Remember though, that not all platforms will be relevant for your recruitment business so don’t try and manage them all! For example, Pinterest doesn’t feature above but if you were a consumer retail business it might be the perfect platform for you.

Give some serious thought to and document your candidate and client persona. Where do they hang out online? That and keeping in mind the statistics above should form the basis of your recruitment marketing strategy for 2020.

Thanksgiving Thoughts for Recruiters

by Liz Carey

Here in America, it’s the day before Thanksgiving, and a time to reflect and express gratitude for things that give your life meaning. In the recruiting world, this may be a time where candidates assess whether their work gives them satisfaction and if they find it meaningful. With the start of a new year coming up, candidates may be at the point where they want to make a change if they don’t feel they are making a positive impact in their current job.

I recently read a great article that suggests steps employers can take to help keep employees satisfied with meaningful work, which ultimately will help ensure the retention of top talent:

Similarly, recruiters can take this time to reflect and express gratitude for all the people and tools that help make you successful. A quick email blast with a Thanksgiving wish can help remind candidates that they aren’t just a number to you… and it will reinforce that personal connection that makes your work meaningful.

Recruiting can be stressful and time-consuming, but take the time to remind yourself of the success stories of finding a candidate their dream job, or fulfilling a difficult need for your client, or sending a lead to a trading partner that helped them land a new client, and it may help you appreciate the hard times and realize how rewarding this line of work is.

Be thankful for your candidates, clients, and trading partners; when you make your next placement, they’ll surely be thankful for you.

Building a Better Recruitment Database

by Veronica Blatt

We are beginning the process of transitioning to a new association management software tool. This creates a terrific opportunity for us to reconsider our database structure, processes, and workflows. We will look to create new efficiencies, while reducing or eliminating inefficient, duplicated, or manual work. If you’re considering a new ATS product, you may have some of the same opportunities to critically review your recruitment database. Here are a few things we’re exploring that may not be “top of mind” in your business: Read the rest of this entry »

Thinking Outside the Square

by Veronica Blatt

Today’s guest blogger is Paulette Steele with Real Resumes located in Queensland, Australia. Real Resumes is educating people from beginning to end on getting a job.  Short videos cover all aspects including: where to look for a job, writing effective resumes, researching and preparing for the interview, and most importantly, mastering the interview itself. Paulette has 15 years of recruitment experience and a vast career in various industries.

We’re told to think outside the square, the box or whatever. Yet, we try to pigeonhole people in many situations and particularly in interviews. Read the rest of this entry »

Year in Review: Split Placements Up in 2019

by Sarah Freiburger

NPAworldwide is a global network of independently-owned, professional recruiting firms working together to increase revenue through split fee placements. The network enables members to better serve their clients through extended geographic reach and greater access to industry specialization. In the process, NPAworldwide members benefit from increased production and a stronger competitive position.

Not only did the number of NPAworldwide member firms grow immensely in 2019, the number of split fee placements made by members also drastically increased, with total member revenue reaching 7 million dollars!  Split placement activity occurred around the world with North America leading the network in deals. The following information highlights key 2019 results:

  • Placements of positions with US$100,000 and above salaries were 35% of total split fee placements
  • Placements of positions with US$70,000 and above salaries were 59% of total split fee placements

Top 5 Practice Groups based on number of split fee placements, listed high to low. Click here  to view industries/niches included in these Practice Groups.

  • Engineering/Operations/Manufacturing
  • Technology
  • Sales / Marketing / Business Development
  • Accounting / Financial Services
  • Chemical Process

It’s not even the end of the year yet and our members are sharing jobs and placing candidates with one another at a rapid pace, excited to see what the rest of the year holds for the network! What does 2020 look like for you? If you are leaving additional revenue out of your business model by not leveraging other independent recruiters there is still time to set yourself up for success in the new year.

Backdoor Hires: We Already Knew the Candidate

by Veronica Blatt

Today’s guest blogger is Wilson Cole. He is the CEO of and Adams, Evens & Ross, the nation’s largest credit and collection agency designed exclusively for the staffing and recruiting industry. In 2008 he was inducted into INC Magazine’s, “INC 500” for being the CEO of Adams, Evens & Ross, the 307th fastest-growing privately held company in America. Adams, Evens, & Ross has helped more than 3,000 staffing and recruiting firms recover more than $1 billion in past-due debt and is an NPAworldwide Endorsed Program.

“We already knew the candidate.”

The most common excuse we hear from debtors that do not want to pay a recruitment fee is, “We already knew the candidate.” In most cases, these types of backdoor hires are the easiest to collect. The biggest hurdle for us to jump is to help the debtor understand that knowing the candidate and knowing they are looking for a job are two very different things. We also have the backdrop that the owner of the company is MAD; they are not really angry with the recruiter, but they are mad at either themselves or their HR manager because they did not have a better pulse on what candidates were actually available. Read the rest of this entry »

Getting a Response from Passive Candidates

by Dave Nerz

Recruitment is a sales profession. Getting clients and passive candidates to respond and take the action needed to complete a placement is not for those unwilling to commit to a recruitment process. Define YOUR PROCESS and repeat it; repeat it again and again until you get a result. If it is not working, change your recruitment process.

On rare occasions, you make a call and a candidate answers. Rare. Sometime luck shines on you and the first well-crafted email hits your target and they respond. Most are very happy just to get a response, even if the response is less than favorable. The answer is a result. Most times more is needed to get a response. Any sale begins with an introduction. Make sure you have a great one.

If you are not so lucky, consider a second email that suggests a phone call and then an actual phone call. Yes, the phone. I know it scares some of the more modern recruiters using AI, social media and robots to get their work done. Meanwhile, old school headhunters are upset passive candidates and clients would rather email than pick up the phone. Somewhere in between is the truth. But certainly use the phone as one of your tools. In addition to live conversations, the phone can be used to text. Be cautious and careful about jumping into text. Make sure to look for some acceptance from candidates and clients on the use of text. One of your emails could suggest that you will be calling or texting in the next few days. If you have a process that is different and works for you, stay the course. If not, reinvent your process or consider an update.

We are not done yet. Good recruiters have the expectation that it will take more than a few contacts to get a response from truly passive candidates. Great recruiters have even more persistence. If you have exhausted email and phone messaging without a result, it may be time to go to social media. I prefer LinkedIn InMails as the next step. It comes at people differently than your typical email. Maybe your email is blocked or going to junk mail.

No response? Before you jump back to your traditional methods, find an even more creative way to move it forward. Try a fax, send a gift card from Starbucks or a letter via post. I have used post cards and the gift card method successfully in sales situations. It is a $5 coffee card and saves you $10 of time and may lead to a $30,000 fee.

Finally, you need to go back to your preferred method, voice or email, and let the passive candidate or client know you got the message. Confirm that what you offer, propose, suggest is not a fit for them AT THIS TIME. Keep the door open while reminding them of what they are missing. Wish them well and move on…I call it the “Close the File” email. Gets about a 75% response rate if you have done all the work required to earn the right to do this close.

You might be surprised by what a good process can do for your results. If you do this with every situation you will be getting more call backs and more yes or no responses. Review metrics you have. Track email open rates and click-through rates. Maybe something as simple as A/B testing of a subject line could change your results. Stay committed to your process and be persistent.

Which Recruitment Conference Should You Attend?

by Veronica Blatt

recruitment conferenceAttending a recruitment conference can be an excellent opportunity to hone your craft. There are dozens of events held every year – there is a good list on this site. It can be difficult to decide which one(s) to attend. Many 2020 events are already scheduled; for example, early registration is currently open for our Global Conference. Here are some tips to help you decide where to spend your time and money:

Start with the content

A recruitment conference is likely to have a specific purpose, mission, or theme. Learn what that is and whether it ties into specific goals you have for your desk or firm. If it’s an event about sourcing but your job is business development, it might not be the best fit for you. Some events focus more on personal networking and relationships. Others provide a classroom training experience.

Who else is attending?

Is there a specific trainer or speaker you’d like to hear? Does the event offer appointment scheduling? Does the recruitment conference include clients or job seekers you can help? Are you likely to meet a lot of new people, or reconnect with old friends? How about the event sponsors? All these groups of people offer valuable connections.

Where is it?

Conference destinations are always interesting. We spend a lot of time thinking about destinations that are intriguing, accessible, and affordable. We survey our members and keep a close eye on where other organizations are holding events. So from a business standpoint, we try to be very tuned-in to destinations that are likely to draw a healthy number of attendees. But, there are other reasons why people attend. Sometimes it’s to visit a client or do some business prospecting. Sometimes attendees piggyback on to another event that is being held nearby. Still others have an opportunity to visit friends or family or use the conference destination as a way to build a memorable vacation.

How much does it cost?

Many attendees look at the cost of a recruitment conference before they look at any other factor. It is also important to calculate value and/or return on investment (ROI). Viewing a recruitment conference as an investment instead of an expense can help you make a better decision about attending. Professional development is an investment in your career. Some investments show their ROI in a short amount of time; others take longer. If you are able to learn one or two tips that save enough money or time to recover the cost of your attendance, you’re in great shape. Investing in your skills makes you a better recruiter and makes your business a stronger competitor.

The recruitment conference landscape is rich; you’re sure to find something that meets your needs. Make 2020 the year you invest in yourself!

Recruiters, What Are Your Values?

by Veronica Blatt

Today’s guest blogger is Laura Schmieder of Premier Placement Inc., specializing in manufacturing especially engineering, operations, supply chain, sales and marketing roles globally. She currently serves on the NPAworldwide board of directors.

I recently read an article in Network Magazine titled Why Best Practices – Aren’t by Mike Myatt. An interesting premise, his thesis was: don’t copy, create. He felt to evolve and be successful, one needed to think outside the box – beyond accepted methodologies, processes, rules, concepts and theories. It was an excellent read and thought-provoking for both recruiters and other business professionals.

As I read it, I thought well that’s all fine and good; however, recruiters still need to work within a framework of standards and policies. He did say that he did NOT recommend a blatant disregard for rules and methodologies but fostered the belief that one needs to challenge the status quo.

Long ago I read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. It’s a philosophy/travel book that mixes discourses on Eastern and Western culture with the blessings/burdens modern technology bestows on us. It’s a quirky book but I often go back and think about the lessons I learned reading it. Repeated throughout is the conviction that you must live a life of quality but also give quality to life around you.

There are many precepts about life throughout the book. Things about not allowing technology to take over your life but using it to your advantage – to produce good work. To instill patience, care and attentiveness in my work, are to achieve peace of mind. Peace of mind produces right values that produce right thoughts (stay with me on this!). Right thoughts produce right actions that produce quality work.

Examine Your Equipment

What is emphasized is the need to examine oneself and the equipment that carries you through your life journey – where have you been and where are you going in the road of life? Is your motorcycle capable of taking you the 200 miles you want to go the next day? Do you have the tools to make the fine adjustments necessary for a smooth and efficient ride? Have you checked your tire pressure, oil level lately? How efficient is the engine that moves you? Computer and telephone systems, wireless headsets, smart phones, resume databases, social networking sites – all great technology but in the end, they are only tools…tools to help you reach out and communicate with prospective candidates, clients or split trading partners – back to basic conversation, picking up the phone.

If you don’t periodically take the time to educate yourself, stretch your mind, share your experiences and expertise, meet new people—you will find yourself in a rut with at least a flat tire (no one to send in for interviews) or worst, a blown engine (offer turned down and NO BACKUP!) Think about it…ALL major professions require continuing education credits. Where are you getting yours? ALL motor vehicles need yearly or bi-yearly inspections – when was the last time YOU inspected your placement machinery and systems?

Networking and training meetings or nowadays, the many webinars or conference calls available…are like the preventative maintenance necessary to run all systems. If you don’t tend to them, then you will be constantly fixing, as oppose to preventing, breakdowns.

Learning new technology, fine-tuning existing systems, reiterating the basics of how to develop candidates and new clients – sometimes it takes getting off the desk and phone, even out of the office completely to gain the full benefit of training and education. Find out how other recruiters are succeeding in this economy (don’t be jealous, LEARN what they are doing that YOU aren’t!). Come back to your own desk with a fresh attitude, with enthusiasm to try that new technique.

Communication Matters

Another example is how lack of communication affects the process. Look at what happens when candidates don’t tell the recruiter or the prospective employer what they really need to make a change OR when the resume is not well-thought-out or the presentation complete. When employers don’t give recruiters feedback throughout the process—for that matter when split trading partners don’t communicate—the process fragments and ultimately can break down. It leads to the breakdown of quality work: negative action instead of positive, forward-moving action.

Avoiding Breakdowns

The lack of honesty, truth and integrity corrupts the process and leads to breakdowns. When you lie about a career opportunity to a prospective candidate or hiring authority and they learn the truth, their trust in you and the entire industry is broken. When candidates pad their resumes with false accomplishments or dates of employment and are found out, the process breaks down. When a client or split partner receives a candidate’s resume from a recruiter but chooses to see if they can find them in a candidate database on their own using that original referral, the process is corrupted. When a hiring authority expects a bribe before sharing job orders —and certain recruiters provide them—the process is corrupted. Negative action instead of positive, forward moving action.

Back to that precept of quality: the conviction that you must live a life of quality, but also give quality to life around you. Are you someone that clients, candidates, your peers turn to because they respect your opinion, your knowledge, your abilities to give sage advice? Do you take the time to share your knowledge and wisdom with new recruiters or students just out of college or outplacement organizations? Sometimes the best way to learn, is to teach a lesson…we are reminded of the adage, “Do as I say, not as I do!” Teaching, or being a mentor, is one way to reinforce what we should always be doing. Have you volunteered in your professional associations or business networks? I think we can all look back in our careers to someone that took the time to teach us. Have we returned the favor and passed on the knowledge and perspectives to be successful in our profession?

Last but not least, do you have peace of mind…have you striven to be the best person you can be? What have you done to improve your mind, your physical body, your soul AND do you avoid actions, people, or situations that are detrimental? In this age of information overload, it’s easy to stray off the path. We have many distractions and it’s up to us to disregard the negative messages and focus on truth, sincerity and integrity. In the end, you only have one life to live. You will have a lot less to worry about if you try to live each day striving to be the best person you can be. It should lead to success in your profession as well. We all want to do business with someone who is not only knowledgeable, but who we respect and trust.

Remember: peace of mind produces right values that produce right thoughts. Right thoughts produce right actions that produce quality work…and ultimately a life of quality.