How to Build Outplacement and Career Transitioning into Your Portfolio

By Paul Slezak - May. 18, 2016
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Ooh … I can see you squirming already.

Back in the day I know (perhaps to my own detriment) that I was one of those very rare recruiters who genuinely cared more about my candidates’ future than I did about the fee up on the board or the commission cheque at the end of the month. In fact I can honestly say that I have helped more candidates through their own career transition than I have necessarily placed candidates into new positions.

Why are so many recruiters afraid to represent candidates who have either been let go or who are working through an outplacement program? Why are they almost afraid to offer outplacement or career transitioning advice?

Ah … of course … because in the contingent world the fee only comes when the candidate gets placed. How could I forget!

Recruiters take note: Today, more than ever before, you need to look for further ways to create added value to your client relationships. HR Managers are starting to look for new, smarter ideas to be delivered by their close and trusted advisers (that’s you … hopefully!). And by offering your own outplacement solution this can only benefit your client relationships while at the same time help you groom your candidates for new opportunities.

A few weeks ago we hosted a webinar to help recruiters understand how easy it is to integrate an outplacement or career transitioning offering into their portfolio. Our special guest was Greg Weiss, Founder of CareerSupport365. Greg first started in the recruitment industry in 1988. In the early 2000s, Greg co-led a network that became one of Australia’s leading professional development networks exclusively for Heads of HR. Today, Greg is focused on helping employers afford Outplacement, Career Transition Support and Career Coaching.

Between November 2014 and March 2015, CareerSupport365 polled white-collar workers who had been laid off due to their roles being made redundant. Here’s what they found:

  • 75% of respondents felt their employer held back in disclosing information leading up to their redundancy;
  • 90% of respondents felt guilty or ashamed about being let go;
  • 40% of respondents blamed themselves for their redundancy;
  • 60% of respondents felt angry with their employer for putting them in this situation;
  • 95% of respondents did not want to see an outplacement consultant on the day they were made redundant;
  • 40% of respondents had been provided an offer of career transition support;
  • 65% of respondents who were not offered a career transition support program would have accepted one, had they been offered; and
  • 70% of respondents were embarrassed to be seen at an outplacement provider’s office.

What would your clients say if you could provide added value in improving their employer brand perception in the market? What about the impact you could personally have on candidates who are going through a very difficult phase in their careers?

As recruiters we all love clients who on-board their new recruits. If employees are on-boarded well, then they integrate well (and will stay beyond the guarantee period).  What if you could also help your clients build a professional ‘off-boarding” process?

Oh I know what you’re thinking …

  • How much success will I really have placing candidates who have gone through an outplacement program?
  • How long would it take to place someone who has gone through an outplacement program?
  • How could I possibly pitch both recruitment services and outplacement services to the same client?
  • Is outplacement really relevant for every organisation given the costs involved? Surely outplacement is only applicable to larger organisations with a solid HR budget?

During the webinar Greg shared his own journey from recruiter to outplacement expert and the story behind what drove this. Given that the idea of outplacement or career transitioning (from a recruitment consultant’s perspective) is still fairly foreign, Greg talked about what it means from the perspective of the employer, the recruiter, the candidate and the often forgotten remaining team members (known as Survivors).

Greg also explained how his own program “Re-employed” is something that recruiters can get involved in, and then ultimately offer to their own clients.

If you want to add value to your client relationships and be seen as a true trusted advisor and partner to your client, watch the recording of our webinar with Greg below and of course reach out to Greg directly via any time to learn more.

Cofounder and CEO at RecruitLoop. I've been a hands on recruiter, manager, trainer, coach, mentor, and regular speaker for the recruitment industry for nearly 25 years.


Paul Slezak

Cofounder and CEO at RecruitLoop. I've been a hands on recruiter, manager, trainer, coach, mentor, and regular speaker for the recruitment industry for nearly 25 years.

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