What Does RPO Stand for in Recruiting? +Tips On How RPO Can Benefit Your Talent Acquisition Strategy

Updated: Apr 25

In the wake of the global pandemic and its accompanying effects, companies need to revamp their recruiting strategies to meet new market realities. Recruitment process outsourcing, or RPO, has become even more important in recent years as a way for businesses to gain a competitive advantage in securing talent.


What is recruitment RPO? What exactly is the role of RPO in recruitment? How can RPO optimize your organization’s recruitment process and benefit your talent acquisition efforts? This brief guide answers all of these, and more!



RPO in recruiting

RPO in HR - What does RPO mean in recruitment?

Recruitment process outsourcing is a form of business process outsourcing that involves the delegation of some part or all of your permanent recruitment needs to an external service provider. These external RPO providers are usually recruitment specialists with talent acquisition as one of their core competencies.


Recruitment process outsourcing in HR and recruitment involves delegating the responsibilities of finding the right talent, among other tasks involved in the hiring process over to a third-party company known as the RPO provider.


Role of RPO in the recruitment process

What is the role of RPO in the recruitment process? Well, it’s simple but quite important. The RPO provider provides strategic RPO solutions aimed at helping the client-company meet their required hiring or recruitment needs - whatever that may be.


These RPO solutions can involve anything from sourcing potential candidates for open positions, interviewing the candidates, hiring the right talents, onboarding new hires, employer branding, and a lot of other services aimed at making the work of hiring managers much easier while still meeting the company’s target of quality hires, shorter time hire, etc.


How RPO models work


Wondering how RPO models work?


Generally, recruitment process outsourcing RPO providers work with the client company to understand their hiring needs and recruiting challenges. The business process outsourcing RPO partner then architects recruitment process outsourcing solutions to meet these unique needs.


The recruiting challenges vary from company to company.


For some, it could be the challenge of finding the best talent possible for a particular position. In some cases, it could be the need to meet their constantly changing human resource needs. Whatever these needs are, there are different recruitment process outsourcing models to help companies meet their talent acquisition goals.


Why do companies use recruitment process outsourcing?


Wondering what the benefits of RPO in talent acquisition are?


While the primary recruitment function of a recruitment process outsourcing RPO specialist might be to source high quality talent to meet a company’s hiring needs, these specialists deliver five key benefits that include;


Costs saving advantage

For most companies, mitigating the increasing hiring costs of the talent acquisition process happens to be one of the major attractiveness of recruitment process outsourcing.


An RPO provider can help organizations tap into wider talent pools, gain a competitive advantage in an expensive job market, all while still enjoying a significant cost savings advantage with a more effective recruitment process.

Reduced time to hire

Outsourcing recruitment to RPO providers can mean access to wider talent communities.

If you’ve ever needed to attract talent faster to fill an open position, you’ll understand the value of RPO partners in the recruiting process. A well-designed RPO solution can help reduce time to fill significantly. This can help any organization gain a competitive edge to move the business forward for steady and sustainable growth.


Improved quality of hires

An RPO expert can increase an organization’s access to top talent.


The wider talent pipelines obtainable with an external provider can often mean better candidate quality. Hiring managers leverage the different recruitment process outsourcing models to hire the right talent and align their human resources management with the business goals of their organization.


Greater flexibility and scalability

The internal team might struggle with meeting the hiring needs of an organization if such needs are constantly changing. One of the best benefits of outsourcing recruitment is how easily an RPO vendor can help architect a flexible solution to meet your hiring goals - both the current hiring goals and future goals.


Whether you need an RPO solution for a specific project like a product launch or other upcoming events, RPO models come in different types from enterprise RPO to project RPO, end to end RPO, and more to help your organization meet its human resources needs with greater flexibility and scalability.


Better hiring process/candidate experience

A good candidate experience is necessary for a good employer brand.


So, along with helping an organization meet its recruitment goals, an RPO provider can also help optimize the hiring process for a better candidate experience. Also, along with attracting talent faster, this can mean a better employer brand and reliable access to a wide talent pool for future purposes.




RPO recruitment outsourcing models come in different forms from project RPO to enterprise RPO and end to end RPO, among others.


Whether you’re in this to reduce hiring costs, attract higher-quality candidates, reduce time to hire, support internal teams, etc, incorporating a proven recruitment process outsourcing RPO specialist into your workforce planning and talent acquisition process carries massive potential and promise for any business.


This article was written by Consultant, Crystal Mano.

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