Who are the competitors of your business and what do you know about them?
Recruitment is a highly competitive business sector, so it is important to pay attention to your competition and what they are doing. Your competition may be traditional recruitment companies and/or more indirect competitors such as online recruitment portals.
Regularly reviewing the market place will widen your perspective on your own business, help you to identify and capitalise on market opportunities, keep you informed of new products and services that are being developed and enable you to respond quickly to market changes. Whether you are the business owner or a recruitment consultant it is equally important to understand the competition.
Here are some questions to think about in your competitor review:
Who are your competitors?
Your competitors may be other local or national recruitment companies or other companies that offer recruitment as part of a portfolio of services and they may be niche or general recruiters. You may also have indirect competitors such as recruitment portals that could target your customers directly.
What is different about them?
What is different about your competitors, why do companies use them for their recruitment and why do candidates like them? Really delve into your competitors to find out all about them.
Who are their customers?
Find out the type of companies and candidates they are targeting and what products and services their different customers are buying from them.
What is their customer service like?
What do you know about the customer service that your competitors offer both to companies and candidates? You may find out from their existing customers, candidates who have used them, their social media or the testimonials on their website.
What products and services do they offer?
Explore the products and services that your competitors offer both to companies who are recruiting and candidates including existing and new products and services, free services, extras and other related products and services.
What prices do they charge?
Consider your competitors pricing structures, including not just quoted prices but also incentives, discounts, repeat purchase offers, free services and special offers. You may need to try some mystery shopping to find out this information.
What are their strengths and weaknesses?
Consider their strengths and weaknesses by looking at their business from an independent perspective. They may have very competitive prices which attract new clients but poor customer service to both clients and candidates.
How do your competitors market and sell their products and services?
Take a good look at their website, social media and other promotional activity e.g. email marketing, PR etc. How do they sell to companies and candidates?
What other information can you find out?
See what other information you can find about your competitors. This may include location, who and how many staff they employ, what systems they use, what they are investing in, who is running the business, their financial position and who owns the business.
Finding out what your competitors are up to and using the information to improve your own business will pay huge dividends to your business.