July 1, 2023

What is RPO (recruitment process outsourcing) in recruitment


According to the data of the analytical agency Staffing Industry Analysts, RPO, or recruitment process outsourcing, has been one of the most demanded and actively developing HR services since 2017.

Let me take a closer look at this phenomenon and analyze in detail what kind of service it is and what benefits a company may get from it.

What is RPO exactly?

RPO is outsourcing the recruitment process or, if you like, a partial or complete transfer by the employer of the search and selection process to a specialized contractor within a project, department, or company.

In what cases is the outsourcing recruitment process relevant?

Based on the experience of the OnHires, which also provides outsourcing recruitment in IT, I would highlight the following cases:

  • A company’s entry into the market;
  • Launching a new product, service, or project by a company;
  • Business expansion;
  • The need to hire a large number of employees in a short time;
  • Absence of HR department or lack of internal resources for self-selection of needed employees;
  • Temporary increase in recruiting volumes, for example, due to seasonality or the requirements of a new project;
  • The desire of the company to reduce costs and optimize the recruitment process in general;
  • The concentration of HR department resources on higher priority tasks, with a full or partial transfer of recruitment to a reliable provider.

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What does RPO give to the client?

Again, based on our company’s practice, I would list such advantages:

  • Access to a pool of relevant candidates to fill a large volume of vacancies;
  • Screening and interviewing candidates at the first stages of the recruiting process;
  • Receiving an ability to quickly search for the suitable candidates using proven tools and channels;
  • Regular assistance from the side of the agency to internal recruitment with expertise and professional cooperation from quality briefs to closing positions;
  • Regular consultations from the side of the provider on a variety of issues within a project, HR department, or company;
  • Professional support the processes of evaluation and hiring candidates from the provider's side.

How to measure the efficiency of RPO?

There are several indicators in recruitment that allow measuring the effectiveness of a recruiting process:

  • The average time to close vacancies;
  • The average cost of closing vacancies;
  • The average number of candidates who have passed the probation period.

RPO technologies

RPO technologies control the process of finding and hiring employees at each stage. And advanced recruitment management systems provide transparency in recruiting services, which increases the customer’s confidence in the provider.

Plus, these up-to-date systems give the customer the opportunity to be aware of the financial costs, the speed of closing positions, and the quality of candidates at any time.


I am not an analyst, but as a person directly related to recruiting, I see the obvious prospects for developing this direction in business.

The international market is actively developing. And new technologies and services are coming to the market, including RPO, which is rapidly increasing in demand.

The current trends greatly influence the development of RPO recruiting in the labor market. Due to the global demographic trends, in particular, the aging of the world population, pandemics, and political and economic crises of recent years, vacancies are beginning to prevail over the percentage of candidates. The competition for talents is intensifying and will continue to boost further.

And this will lead to the fact that it will be more and more difficult for companies to independently cope with searching and hiring the necessary specialists, which will naturally lead to an even greater demand for Recruitment Process Outsourcing providers and recruiting agencies in general.