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Top 10 recruitment metrics to guarantee success

All recruiters know they must measure certain metrics in order to succeed. But what are the most important ones you need to take into account?

Every recruitment agency looking to succeed in the industry will know the importance of proper measurement plans. However, there are so many metrics you need to take into account that it can be hard to know which ones to prioritise. Here are the top ten you should be keeping track of to increase your chances of success:

1.   Time to fill

This is the total time it takes to place a candidate in a job, from the moment you first place an advert or contact a potential candidate to the moment an offer is accepted. Tracking it lets you know how long you can expect each role to take to fill, allowing you to make sure your candidates’ expectations are realistic.

2.   Time to hire

This metric is more specific to each candidate, measuring the time between someone being approached and them accepting a job. It is a measurement of how quickly candidates go through your hiring process, which you can use internally to measure how quickly you are able to work and identify bottlenecks.

3.   Quality of hire

You can measure this with client surveys or standardised performance ratings, but no matter how you do it, you need to be keeping track of how good the hires you make are. If your agency is providing companies with candidates who aren’t the right fit, you need to be able to spot why that might be.

4.   Retention

How long do the hires you make last at their jobs? Your clients will be interested in this statistic, as it shows how good you are at finding candidates that are the right fit for the companies you represent. If you find your hires don’t stay for long, you can look at why this might be; perhaps you need to focus more on company culture than qualifications, for example.

5.   Applicants per opening

Tracking the number of people who apply for each job can give you a great insight into which careers are in high demand. Having more candidates to choose from will make recruiting for a particular position easier, so if you are looking to specialise in a particular area this information might help you narrow down what will be best for your agency.

6.   Selection ratio

This metric can be calculated by dividing the number of candidates who were hired for a certain job by the number who applied; so if ten people went for a job and only one was hired, the selection ratio would be 0.1. You can use this to work out how useful your recruitment methods are.

7.   Offer acceptance ratio

Dividing the number of job offers that have been accepted by the total number made gives you the offer acceptance ratio. Ideally, this would be as close to one as possible. If it starts to shrink, it could be a sign that the job you’re recruiting for isn’t paid highly enough, or is missing some other benefit that candidates see as crucial.

8.   Application completion rate

If you are recruiting via an online application form, you need to be tracking how many people get to the end of it. By measuring at which point candidates abandon their application, you can work out what the barriers to completion are and mitigate them in some way. For example, if it takes a long time to fill out all their past jobs they might get frustrated and leave.

9.   Source of application

You should be noting down where your contact with each candidate came from in order to determine which strategy is most optimal for you. For example, you might find that you have a lot of success directly calling people, or contacting them on LinkedIn. It would make sense, therefore, to focus more on these avenues in future.

10.  Cost per hire

Perhaps most importantly, you need to make sure you are charging clients correctly, which means you need to be calculating how much it costs you to fill each role you’re given responsibility for. If you’re spending dozens of hours to fill a single position that won’t provide you with much money, you might need to rethink your pricing structure.


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