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“RPO vs. Traditional Hiring: Which Approach Is Right for Your Company”

Updated: Sep 29, 2023

Recruitment and hiring processes play a pivotal role in shaping a company's success. As organizations strive to attract and retain top talent in an increasingly competitive job market, the choice between Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) and traditional hiring methods becomes a crucial decision. Both approaches have their merits and drawbacks, making it essential for companies to carefully evaluate their specific needs and circumstances. In this article, we will delve into the key differences between RPO and traditional hiring and provide insights to help you determine the best approach for your company.

Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO): It involves delegating part or all the recruitment process to an external service provider. This provider is responsible for sourcing, screening, interviewing, and sometimes even onboarding candidates. RPO aims to streamline and optimize the hiring process by leveraging specialized expertise and resources.

Traditional hiring: It refers to the internal recruitment process managed by the company's HR department or hiring managers. It involves posting job openings, reviewing applications, conducting interviews, and making final hiring decisions within the organization.

Pros and Cons of RPO


  • Expertise: RPO providers are experienced in recruitment and stay updated with industry trends, ensuring access to a broader talent pool.

  • Scalability: RPO can quickly adapt to changing hiring needs, whether the company is experiencing rapid growth or downsizing.

  • Time and Cost Savings: RPO can reduce the time-to-fill vacancies and cut recruitment costs through efficient processes and economies of scale.

  • Focus on Core Activities: Outsourcing recruitment allows the internal team to focus on core business activities and strategic initiatives.


  • Cultural Alignment: RPO providers might not fully understand the company's culture, potentially leading to mismatches in candidate selection.

  • Initial Investment: Setting up an RPO partnership requires time and resources to establish seamless communication and collaboration.

Pros and Cons of Traditional Hiring


  • Direct Involvement: Internal hiring teams have a deep understanding of the company's culture and values, enabling them to identify candidates who align well.

  • Immediate Feedback: Internal teams can provide real-time feedback and maintain control over the entire hiring process.


  • Resource Intensiveness: Traditional hiring demands significant time, effort, and resources from internal teams, potentially leading to delays in filling positions.

  • Limited Expertise: Internal recruiters might not have the specialized skills and industry insights that external RPO providers offer.

  • Slower Adaptability: Traditional hiring processes might struggle to cope with sudden changes in hiring needs, hindering agility.

The choice between RPO and traditional hiring should be based on various factors:

  • Company Size and Growth Stage: Startups and small companies might benefit from RPO's scalability, while larger, established organizations may prefer traditional hiring for greater control.

  • Recruitment Frequency: If your company frequently hires large volumes of employees, RPO can help manage the load efficiently.

  • Industry Expertise: Consider whether your internal team has the necessary industry knowledge or if outsourcing to RPO specialists would yield better results.

  • Budget and Resources: Evaluate the financial resources available for recruitment and whether outsourcing is a cost-effective solution.

  • Urgency: RPO can expedite the hiring process, making it suitable for roles that need to be filled quickly.

  • Company Culture: Consider whether an RPO provider can accurately capture and promote your company's culture during candidate interactions.

In conclusion, ultimately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to the RPO vs. traditional hiring dilemma. Both approaches have their merits, and the decision depends on your company's unique requirements and circumstances. A hybrid approach, blending the strengths of both methods adopted by ExlCareer not only solves talent acquisition hurdles effectively but also in a cost-efficient manner with varied interests and backgrounds. Careful consideration of its size, growth stage, recruitment needs, and available resources guides it towards making the right choice that aligns with its long-term hiring goals.

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