An employment agency works with employers and prospective employees, trying to match an individual's job skills with an employer's requirements for a specific job position. In many cases, employment agencies actually act as outsourced Human Resources departments. When the agency places a qualified employee with an employer, the agency receives a commission for the services, which it has provided. But in order to successfully place qualified candidates with employers, an employment agency must foster a good working relationship with job seekers and employers both. To do so, the agency must interact with each of its clients to gain a clear idea of an applicant's qualifications, skills, and special interests. The agency also must understand an employer's needs, requirements, and expectations for a particular position it is seeking to fill.
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Screening Potential Applicants
Job-hunting can be a tedious and time-consuming task for someone seeking a new employment opportunity. The greatest challenge is where to look for new job opportunities. Filling available positions can be an equal challenge to an employer. Again, the question is where to begin looking for qualified and reliable employees. An employment agency does the initial footwork for recruiting, bringing potential candidates and employers together, saving time for everyone. Employment agencies conduct those first interviews and background checks, eliminating any candidates who do not qualify for current vacancies, which must be filled. During this screening process, an employment agency also helps job seekers to determine what kind of job might best match their abilities and experience, offering opportunities for both temporary and long-term employment, ranging from entry-level to middle-management positions. An employment agency may be thought of as combining career counselling with placement services.
Employers pay the fees charged by employment agencies because it saves them time and work. No fee is paid until an applicant is hired for the position, and the agency places the applicant on the job. In many cases, during the probationary period, an employee actually is on the payroll of the temporary employment agency. The fee charged an employer by the agency includes the employee's hourly rate, payroll taxes deducted, workman's compensation insurance, and any other costs associated with processing the payroll (e.g. man hours). Some employment agencies now offer employers reduced fees or discounted rates if guaranteed a certain number of positions to fill. If a candidate is offered a permanent position with the employer, the employer generally pays a fee based on a percentage of the annual salary of the position being filled. However, some employment agencies charge applicants a fee for job training programs, which they offer, as well as helping them to compose a resume or prepare for a job interview.
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