What is RPO?

Your Ultimate Guide to Recruitment Process Outsourcing.

Discover everything you need to know about RPO and hone in on the perfect Talent Acquisition solution for your business.

Your journey to flexible, efficient and affordable recruitment starts here.

Considering RPO? Get the full picture on how RPO stands to benefit your business.

Download our Ultimate Guide to RPO and find out exactly how you can reap the rewards of an outsourced recruitment solution.


First things first - what is RPO?

Short for Recruitment Process Outsourcing, RPO is where a business outsources some or all its recruitment functions to an external provider. An RPO provides the people, processes and technologies to meet your needs.

With the right partner, an RPO solution can help HR & Talent Acquisition teams drive lasting value to their business helping you make talent acquisition a competitive advantage.

A Recruitment Process Outsourcing agreement typically takes one of four forms, depending on the volume of recruitment you’re looking to outsource:


on-demand recruiter rpo

On-Demand Recruiter

Wish you had more recruitment support to help you grow but don’t have the time, budget or risk appetite to hire someone?    

An On-Demand Recruiter solution could be for you.

More about this RPO Solution

project rpo

Project RPO

Anticipating significant candidate demand for a short period of time?

Project RPO could be for you. This is where you nominate a business to manage end-to-end recruitment for a specific project or period of time.

More about this RPO Solution


modular rpo

Modular RPO

Have an existing in-house team but could do with some extra talent acquisition support?

Modular RPO is well worth considering. Modular RPO can work alongside them to reduce missed talent opportunities.

More about this RPO Solution

end to end rpo

Full Recruitment Process Outsourcing

Keen to save money, improve quality of hire and gain time to focus elsewhere on your business?

Full RPO could be the right solution for you and works well as a total solution, or in tandem with your in-house team.

More about this RPO Solution


Find your ideal talent acquisition strategy.

Book a free, no-obligation consultation with our industry-leading Workforce Solution Architects and we’ll help you hone in on the best option for your business.

Book My Free Consultation Now

Is a Recruitment Process Outsourcing agreement the right fit for your business?  


Wondering if an RPO agreement is the right solution for your business?

This isn’t always an easy decision to make.

Fortunately, there are 5 clear indicators that RPO could be the right fit for your organisation:

Top RPO indicators

  1. You’re struggling to handle demand and sustainably source talent
  2. Quality of service from your recruitment supply chain isn’t meeting expectations
  3. Recruitment costs are too high - or worse, you don’t know what they are
  4. No access to data about the speed or quality of talent acquisition
  5. You’re not creating a consistently positive recruitment & onboarding experience

Download Our Hiring Indicators Checklist

How will you benefit from an RPO?

An RPO can be a game-changer for your business, with many companies experiencing 3 clear benefits after moving away from ‘transactional’ recruitment in favour of a permanent workforce solution:


reduce time to hire

1. Reduced time to hire

With in-depth data, expert consulting and increased bandwidth.

Read article - Three ways an RPO can reduce time-to-hire

lower cost per hire

2. Lower cost per hire

From volume spend discounts, improved brand image, and ongoing visibility of key cost metrics.

Read article - Reduce cost-per-hire with an RPO solution, here's how...

improved quality of hire

3. Improved quality of hire

Through constant process optimisation, ongoing reporting and expert consultation on employer branding to attract top talent.

Read article - How can Recruitment Process Outsourcing improve the quality-of-hire at your business?

How do RPO agreements measure up against PSLs?

RPO agreements bring a number of business benefits that Preferred Supplier List models simply can’t offer. Here’s how our RPO solution measures up against the traditional PSL model:


  Preferred Supplier List (PSL) RPO


❌  There is no single party responsible for successful talent acquisition. Recruiters will prioritise the least path of resistance towards hitting targets


✅ Your RPO provider takes full responsibility for time, cost and quality of hire.
Supply chain management

❌ You’re left to juggle a hefty and disconnected supply chain that’s more focused on hitting their numbers than delivering quality candidates.


​​✅ Your RPO partner takes responsibility for supply chain management to  deliver a seamless blend of quality, cost and speed.
Expert insight and consultancy

❌ PSL input stops at the point of submitting CVs.


✅ An RPO team will work with you to provide guidance on how to continually optimise your recruitment process.


Scalable delivery and commercials ❌ Your PSL suppliers aren’t bound by any loyalty. Scale down recruitment, and you run the risk of losing key talent to competitors.

✅  An RPO scales up and down in line with current recruitment requirements, meaning you pay for the service you receive, not more.


Regained time to focus on core business objectives ❌ Your in-house team still have to handle interviews and onboarding.

✅ Everything from sourcing to screening and onboarding is done for you.


Employer brand enhancement ❌ You’re left to manage your brand in-house and risk damage from being represented by multiple agencies.

✅ You contract one supplier that specialises in developing consistent, clear and compelling messaging to represent your employer brand and attract top talent


Value for money ❌ Agency fees are expensive - but more so is the hidden cost of your in-house teams’ time on managing recruitment.

✅ Costs are clear and transparent. RPO clients are rewarded with lower fees, which translate into significant cost savings.


Innovation and continuous improvement ❌Between suppliers who are motivated to provide a commoditised service and stretched in-house teams, innovation is hard to come by with a PSL model

✅ RPOs operate to industry best practice and share the latest learnings and optimisations from across the wider industry to bring you the latest tools, technology and thinking.


Considering RPO? Get the full picture on how RPO stands to benefit your business.

Download our Ultimate Guide to RPO and find out exactly how you can reap the rewards of an outsourced recruitment solution.

Yes, download my free guide now

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Does an RPO mean giving up control of my recruitment?

Not at all - we encourage our clients to see RPO not as relinquishing control, but taking control. With an RPO agreement, you’ll have far greater visibility over your end-to-end talent acquisition process, which in turn translates to a firmer grasp on cost, speed and quality of hire.

Do I have to give up my existing in-house team? >> 

Not at all! We can be as hands-on or hands-off as you like.

If you have an existing team, our RPO offering will perfectly complement your current output, helping to build on your team’s strengths and cover any missed areas of opportunity to give you an all-round, high performing talent acquisition solution.

Is an RPO more expensive than pay-as-you-go PSL recruitment?

The opposite couldn’t be more true. Contingent recruitment works on a fixed fee per placement, regardless of volume. Contrary to this, RPO agreements offer volume-based discounts, which translate to immediate cost savings.

With RPO, you get a fully customised talent acquisition solution, at a lower, transparent cost compared to the hidden fees of traditional PSL recruitment.  the traditional contingent recruitment model.

How long does an RPO take to implement?

Every client is different, but you should factor in a period of 3-6 months to be fully operational.

However, if you anticipate significant demand and need a solution sooner, we can work with you to set up our service much faster.

Interested in RPO but not sure if it’s the right fit?

Our expert Workforce Solution Architects are here to help. Book a free, no-obligation consultation call now and we’ll present the perfect solution for your business needs.

Book a call

RPO case studies

de&s logo

“Gattaca Solutions has supported us every step of the way and made this change programme as easy for the business as possible.”

Head of Recruitment

Read case study

ricardo logo

“We believe in the importance of true business partnership and this has evolved to be the case with Gattaca”

Head of Organisational Development

Read case study