RPO & StaffingTalent Acquisition

RPO Improves Hiring Needs of Business Partners at Syngenta

Global agriculture firm achieves a sustainable recruitment model by tapping into one RPO vendor’s service offering.
by Paula Coles
Being an HR professional is never simple. In good times, the competition for high-impact talent is fierce, and companies develop unique techniques and practices to win over the best workers. Companies have been offering attractive compensation packages, bonuses, and perks to win talent.

Now, seemingly overnight, the economy has gone from boom to bust. The dynamic of the HR professional’s role has changed dramatically. Instead of competing for talent, they can tap the largest pool of candidates since World War II. But that presents its own set of challenges. Even in good times, weeding through piles of resumes was a tedious task. Now that pile is a skyscraper. While many businesses are shedding workers, some businesses are holding steady and even others are thriving.

Case in point: Syngenta. We are an $8.1 billion global agriculture firm and employ 5,000 workers in the U.S. and 24,000 worldwide. Syngenta has maintained a constant and large volume of staffing needs.

The company recently turned to RPO (recruitment process outsourcing) for our U.S. recruitment, and has found the process to be a significant help in mitigating the highs—and now the lows—of the economy.

No matter which way a company’s HR pendulum may swing, RPO is designed to help navigate market conditions, and consistently deliver highly qualified and skilled talent to suit the company’s needs. Before we implemented an RPO solution, our HR business partners were each handling their own recruitment duties, from requisition development and resume screening, to interviewing and hiring. But with so many positions to fill, recruitment was encompassing nearly half of each HR department’s time, leaving fewer hours to focus on core duties.

The partners needed to be available to make strategic plans and decisions. Subsequently, the ideal solution was to outsource the tactical responsibilities of recruitment so they’d have time to focus on growing the business.Syngenta needed an efficient and centralized system. We also sought a partner that was knowledgeable in its industry, staffed with professional resources, and could find highly qualified candidates quickly.

While researching recruitment partners, Syngenta found Yoh HR Solutions. We were attracted to its program, which includes end-to-end RPO services that can be customized to a company’s unique needs. The solution was implemented in 2007 to assist HR in meeting their business objectives for all divisions.

Yoh HR Solutions stood out for us because its process–driven workflow is both high in quality and efficient. They work hard to ensure they have an understanding of the positions we need to fill and fully embrace our employee value proposition.

Yoh HR Solutions backed its program with a track record that included the recruitment and hiring of more than 10,000 positions in the technology, biotech, energy, aviation, financial, and manufacturing industries in 2007 alone.

Syngenta engaged the Yoh HR Solutions team, comprised of recruiters embedded in the agriculture and bio-science recruitment fields. This expertise ensured they were well-positioned to identify and recruit talent with the skills Syngenta needed to drive our business. Yoh’s value came early on in the selection process, offering managers sourced, pre-qualified talent for their open positions. Yoh also coordinated the on-site interview process. These services allowed managers and HR business partners to stay focused on the demands of their business.

A Diverse Candidate Pool
Based on this model, Yoh HR Solutions has filled 240 positions for us in just 14 months. Its methodology has allowed for a more robust, diverse pool of candidates for our key positions, allowing us to meet our strategic objectives.

Syngenta is also able to hire individuals more quickly. Time to submit—which is the date the requisition opens to the date that Yoh HR Solutions submits the slate of qualified candidates, has been significantly reduced. Through an ATS solution offered by Yoh, we can easily see each stage of the workflow, including delays that affect key metrics. This visibility allows necessary dialogue to occur so that hiring objectives are met.
Business partners are no longer saddled with tactical recruitment duties and now are involved in conducting interviews only. This gives partners much more time to focus on their core duties.

RPO has proven to be the right choice for us for managing talent acquisition. By engaging in an outsourced solution that provides end-to-end services and specialized recruiters, RPO practitioners like us are well-positioned to gain the tools and intelligence they need to find high-impact talent that suits their needs. HRO

Paula M. Coles, SPHR, is a strategic business partner at Syngenta.

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