People Group Contractor Satisfaction Survey

In the summer of 2018, we reached out to over 1,000 contractors to get a sense of what they really wanted from their recruitment agency. The survey delivered a response rate across a wide range of disciplines.

Our aim is to dispel myths, destroy assumptions and help recruiters see outside of their bubble. To really understand how they can deliver a better candidate experience. Here are three key take-outs.

Candidate loyalty is real

45% of contractors tend to stay with a recruitment agency for two years. With 28% at their current agency for that long. So that dispels the transient reputation of contractors. But that doesn’t mean they’re lifers. As a matter of fact, one of the big stats from our survey is that 84% of contractors would consider a fee-free PAYE pay option and 67% said it would influence their choice of agency. But over half (52%) were given no choice of pay option. So candidates can be loyal, but you have to work hard to deliver value over and above simply giving them the right rate and opportunity. Often it’s the easily overlooked things like payroll that can make the difference.

It’s not all about the rate

Sure, contractors are most concerned with rates of pay (93%) and relevant opportunities (90%), but do you know what else matters? Their relationship with the agency and their recruiter. Over 90% stated it was important or very important that the agency had their best interests at heart and 94% said the same about their recruitment consultant. Trust is a big emotional driver. It’s important to be open and upfront about things. We constantly hear about contractor frustrations with the complexity of umbrella companies. And nothing destroys trust faster than putting forward the umbrella rate without also telling them about the deductions. Guaranteed bridge burner. Recruiters should focus on how they can build the relationship and reinforce trust throughout the contractor journey.

Contractor experience is the key

It’s estimated that by 2020, 50% of workers will be contingent. And there’s no doubt that recruiters have a longer-term, more complicated relationship with contractors. Beyond getting the right job for the right candidate, recruiters need to look at the entire candidate journey to drive contractor engagement. The things that frustrate contractors are the same things that frustrate us all – lack of personal service (56%) too much admin (48%). The recruiters that deliver a simple, easy and rewarding experience throughout the contractor journey are the ones who’ll win.