Opening a client up to a huge talent pool

Our client, a small clinical research organisation (CRO) in Germany, was looking for a variety of roles, mainly clinical research associates and project managers, but also clinical trial associates, statisticians, and more. This was down to an increased number of clinical trials in the wake of the covid pandemic.

Their approach to recruitment was relying on the line managers’ internal contacts and direct application as they didn’t have an internal recruitment team to actively search for candidates. This was putting a lot of pressure on the line managers who already had demanding workloads.

The challenge

Germany is huge for CROs and the specific city where our client was based was no exception. Some of these companies are huge international names, but there are a lot of mid-sized companies too. There are also pharmaceutical and biotech companies of varying sizes and renown competing for the same talent.

In addition, the client generally didn’t like agencies. The line managers were of the opinion the candidates sent by agencies weren’t particularly motivated for the role or the company, they were just being pushed by the agency. It was clear the client wanted candidates specifically motivated to work at their company.

If they could not get the staff they needed, they were at risk of having to reject new projects from their own clients.

Our process

We advised the client that it would be very difficult for them to attract the candidates with the motivations and skills they desired due to the high competition from other companies, especially as our client wasn’t a well-known name.

Assessing a candidate’s motivations for changing their role is engrained in our recruitment processes, just as much as assessing their skills and cultural fit for the roles we put them forward for so we were able to assure the client we would only send truly motivated candidates.

Given the size of the client’s company, and therefore the budget for these roles, we also made sure we were only presenting candidates truly interested in this kind of environment.

The outcome

Since we started working with the client in March 2022, we placed four people in three months. They now give our team all their roles as they are well satisfied with the quality of candidates they are seeing. This means their line managers can get back to their day-to-day jobs, with a much more balanced workload.