How our redefined project RPO can solve your talent challenges

Written by Robert Gould  •  Recruitment  •  17 October 2022

Uncertain times call for unique solutions. As talent acquisition teams continue to face an array of challenges, more and more organisations are side-stepping a full recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) programme in favour of a short-term solution that can be set up quickly to respond to changes in the market and in their own TA teams.

Talent acquisition teams are navigating an unpredictable job market. Following the Covid-19 pandemic, organisations are still struggling to rebuild their workforces. In early 2021, a little phenomenon known as the great resignation saw workers resign en masse from their jobs in pursuit of new and more rewarding opportunities. The global trend continues to this day, with one in five workers planning to quit their jobs in 2022. Globally, 75% of companies reported talent shortages this year – a 16-year high.

In a candidate’s job market, employers are expected to compete tirelessly to make the most attractive offer. Candidates hold so much power that they’re able to command more competitive salaries, flexible working patterns, career development opportunities, and more. The expectation for TA teams to attract candidates and meet their requests is making it even more difficult for them to do their jobs. Across the world, recruiters are overworked and in high demand. In the UK, LinkedIn job postings for recruiters nearly tripled in April 2022 compared to pre-pandemic levels, while in the US, staffing or recruitment agencies saw a 131% increase in recruiter positions.

These factors have left many organisations looking for short-term TA support that can be set up quickly to respond to changes in the market and in their own TA teams. Rather than undertaking an end-to-end recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) solution, many employers are turning to project-based RPO.

What is project-based RPO?

Compared to a regular end-to-end RPO programme, which is managed over several years and can cover every aspect of a TA strategy, project-based RPO tends to be delivered as a short-term solution, often in a matter of weeks or months. Typically, project-based RPO is best suited to short-term hiring requirements, such as the launch of a new product or service.

Our Project RPO solution has been redefined to address the three most common challenges facing companies today. In this article, we’ll explore what these are and how we can help you overcome them.

1.       Struggling to find talent: Sourcing

What is it?

This can encompass traditional sourcing, top of funnel activity, source and screening, and source/screen/shortlist activities.

Case study

We’ve been delivering a global direct sourcing model for an established consumer banking client since 2019. We source for c.4,000 roles in the UK, Hong Kong, China, India, the Philippines, and Singapore, focusing on junior to mid-management grades across banking operations, retail banking, customer service, and tech. This year, we have been asked to bolt on a Project RPO solution in EMEA.


A scalable off-site Account team of around 50 team members underpinned by the Avature CRM and market intelligence via RSIntelligence. The team include Sourcers, Direct Recruiters, Long-listers, and Talent Community Managers based across our Global Service Centre (GSC) network, delivering direct sourcing, screening, and onboarding.


·       83% or better CV-to-interview ratio (H2 2021)

·       90% and above offer-to-hire ratio (HR 2021)

·       At least 40% gender diversity hires (H2 2021)


2.       Overwhelmed by the mechanics of recruitment: Admin and coordination support

What is it?

Modular RPO enables organisations to get support with the individual RPO components they need most, which helps to alleviate the pressures placed on internal teams.

For instance, a modular RPO can address the everyday tasks that can quickly become overwhelming in volume, such as recruitment administration, candidate assessments and screening, responding to queries, as well as onboarding.

Case study

We support a leading insurance and financial services company with administration and coordination for their permanent recruitment in the UK. This admin and coordination support reduces the pressures placed on the in-house TA team and is an add-on to our delivery of a full managed service provider (MSP). Our partnership is in its third year and has been renewed for another three.


Delivered by a scalable off-site team of recruitment coordinators based within our Manchester GSC, this solution includes organising and scheduling all interviews, administering the candidate assessments, responding to all candidate queries, and initiating onboarding.

We also support with administrative tasks outside of the recruitment process – for example, processing all requests for references from previous employees. To enable true agility, each of our recruitment coordinators is cross-skilled and fully trained on both contingent and permanent recruitment processes, so we can seamlessly flex and scale to support wherever we’re needed.


On a monthly basis, our team typically manages:

·       310 interviews

·       225 references

·       1,300 queries

·       90 pre-employment screenings

To ensure we’re meeting the client’s requirements, we commit to Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and have consistently met them for the last two years. Some of the measures include acknowledging all new interview requests within three hours, scheduling interviews within 24 hours, and providing an update to the client within 24 hours of a candidate completing their screening.

3.       Business expansion on top of BAU: End-to-end RPO on a short-term basis

What is it?

When a company moves premises or expands to a new location, they may need short-term support to help them identify, engage, and recruit local talent, or relocate talent from elsewhere.

Case study

A luxury fashion house engaged Resource Solutions to deliver a Project RPO in support of their new office location in Leeds. The purpose of the project was to hire over 300 shared service centre personnel and to support the relocation of staff from London to Leeds. The disciplines covered by the solution include Customer Service, IT, HR, Procurement and Finance.


Our solution was mobilised within seven weeks and staffed by a team with in-depth industry knowledge. The core Account team of eight were based in our Manchester GSC, with a surge team of six supporting through the initial period of peak recruitment activity. Our team worked in conjunction with the client’s HR team and line managers to coordinate and manage all assessment centres. We underpinned the solution with VMS and ATS recruitment technology, along with Avature CRM to provide talent pooling.


Key successes include 100% non-agency sourcing and 96% of hiring managers rating the organisation of the assessment centre events as either good or excellent. Additionally, initial offers to senior hires were made within a two-to-three-week period, demonstrating how quickly the team was fully operational.


As we’ve seen, hiring needs come in all different shapes and sizes. For organisations that are understandably reluctant to commit to extensive, multi-year contracts, Project RPO serves as an effective alternative that can address many talent challenges – including sourcing, admin support, and rapid business expansion. Essentially, Project RPO combines the control, consistency and compliance of an RPO expert with the speed and flexibility of a dedicated hiring team.

Get it touch with us today to discover what a bespoke Project RPO solution can do for your business. 

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