Adecco Takes Top Spot In Canadian Staffing Industry Ranking

The companies on the Top 5 last year are still in the Top 5 this year, but each one has changed its position when ranked by revenue. This is always an exciting moment for those of us in the staffing industry in Canada. We love to see who’s in the top three spots, who’s moved… Here are the Top 5 as reported by Staffing Industry Analysts. Notably missing from the Top 5: Manpower. Much like Randstand and Adecco, Manpower is a global staffing provider but doesn’t share Canadian figures from all operations in the country. If they should choose to do so in the future, I’m thinking they would land in one of the top spots.

Top 5 Canadian Staffing Companies Ranked By 2012 Revenue

  • #1 Adecco takes over the #1 spot with an increase in revenue from $515M in 2011, to $679M in 2012. Kudos for that increase!
  • #2 Randstad gave up the top spot to move into #2 despite a nice increase from $525M in 2011 to $650M in 2012.
  • #3 Procom slid up 2 spots to hit #3. Revenue increased a whopping $2M to hit $500M in 2012.
  • #4 Design Group comes in at #4 with $390M revenue in 2012.
  • #5 Allegis Group is at #5 with $385M revenue in 2012. For comparison, here’s the list that was published last year, based on 2011 revenue.

2012 List of largest canadian staffing firmsCanadianstaffingindustryrevenue

  Congratulations to all five firms! – To keep up to date with recruiting news and the latest on social recruiting, join Plugged In Recruiter on Facebook.

Source: Staffing Industry Analysts


Recruiter Workload

Setting appropriate goals for recruiters is a tough task.  Generalist recruiters handle a wide variety of positions which creates productivity peaks and valleys.  Specialists may enjoy a steadier, more predictable workflow in terms of number of hires expected; their challenges come from the differing preferences of the hiring managers they support.  In the agency world, client mix produces measurement complexity due to variations in administrative requirements from client to client.  And then there are the unrecoverable lost hours from cancelled requisitions…  You see the challenge.

Marcus Buckingham, author of “The One Thing You Need To Know”, advocates finding the one metric that is important above all others.  This is a great principle to follow at the organization level, but one that can cause recruiters great angst — unless the “one thing” is universally understood as critically important to both the company and the recruiter. presents an interesting case by telling Jennifer’s story.  It’s worth a read if you have recruiters in your company.

3 Reasons to Conduct 1-on-1’s with Contract and Temporary Workers

one-on-one meetingThe biggest and possibly most costly myth surrounding the management of contractors and temporary workers is that client companies should not engage in one-on-one coaching with these people.

This is wrong.

If you are a manager, your first job is to ensure that everyone on your team is fully engaged and working effectively toward the pursuit of your company’s objectives.  Excluding some workers from coaching will reduce overall performance and may introduce the belief that there is a hierarchy of worthiness among workers.

Here are my top 3 reasons for conducting one-on-ones with temporary workers:

1) Relationships improve performance.  What better way to build understanding and alignment than by giving individual attention.

2) A manager’s most important job is to lead people toward greater results than they could achieve without you.  I don’t know how you can bring value to your team without talking to them.

3) By meeting with every member of your team you are sending the message that all workers matter, regardless of employment status.  This sets the tone for respect – something that temporary workers truly appreciate and should be able to expect on the job site.

One proviso:  Make sure there is clarity around which conversations the staffing agency takes care of (pay, assignment status, benefits) and which the client company is directly responsible for (site-specific performance coaching, on-site safety, department objectives and measurements).  This should remove co-employment concerns when coaching temporary workers.

I recommend two podcasts on this topic.  They can be found on the Manager Tools web site.  If you haven’t sampled Mark Horstman and Mike Auzenne before now, you are in for a treat.  Enjoy part 1 here.  The link to part 2 is on the same page.

Western Provinces Set To Drive GDP Growth in Canada

Canada’s modest GDP growth forecast will outperform that of the U.S.  We should expect to see a continued influx of U.S. companies as growth-oriented organizations look for new markets in stable economies.  I’ve heard from several U.S.-based staffing providers who see Canada as their next target for international expansion.  Are you prepared for increased competition?

GDP Forecast 2012 % Change

Canada overall 2.5 Modest growth expected. Challenges: government stimulus spending is winding down; record household debt levels, high food and gas prices and a cooling housing market.
Alberta 3.3 Heavy oil output ramping up.  Demand for technical, scientific and legal professionals will remain strong as the province’s economy continues to grow and diversify. “Alberta Innovates” initiative is providing funding to a wide variety of knowledge-intensive industries, including health, energy and the environment.
Saskatchewan 3.3 Oil well drilling & natural gas production increases.  Agriculture hit by poor spring conditions but fueled by strong growth in agriculture bio-tech sector.
British Columbia 3.1 Mining & mining support services (engineering, legal), natural gas export to Asian markets, software, film industry.
Manitoba 2.7 Utilities (construction & energy export), service sector expected to outperform (finance, insurance, real estate)
Newfoundland & Labrador 2.5 Mining & related construction, offshore oil, housing market fuelled by strong employment numbers and rising income
Quebec 2.5 Aerospace manufacturing, mining, technology
Ontario 2.2 Service sector growth (finance, retail, wholesale trade).  Manufacturing will benefit from tax reforms.  Auto manufacturing expected to jump following the Japan crisis.
Prince Edward Island 2.1 Food manufacturing, wind power research & manufacturing, pharma and medical manufacturing increase.
New Brunswick 2.0 Potash expected to double. Non-durable goods production increases. Challenge: NB is most vulnerable to U.S. exports (over 85% of exports are U.S. bound) and high Canadian dollar placing more pressure on outsourced call centre sector. Local talent not keeping up with technology sector demands.
Nova Scotia 1.9 Manufacturing stabilized & poised for growth in international export sectors. Finance, real estate & insurance remain strong – partially attributed to “jobsHere” initiative.

Source: Scotiabank Group Global Economic Research, July 2011

Considering a Career in the Staffing Industry?

It’s 4:00 p.m. on a sunny Friday afternoon in August.  It’s been a great week and you’re proud of what you and your team have done for clients.  Things are in order.  That’s when the phone rings and you find yourself listening to a high-strung voice at the other end of the line telling you they need 8 people for a last minute production shift due to start at 6:00 a.m. on Saturday.  This client is counting on you to get the right talent in place so that he can achieve his objectives.  What do you do?

Or try this one on for size.  During a regularly scheduled service review you learn that your client is working on a new marketing campaign.  She is asking you to source 30 customer service representatives with superior communication skills to man the phones for six months.  You have two weeks to complete the project and help this client drive a winning campaign.  What do you do?

Or this…  Your office has 11 data entry operators working on temporary assignments at a client site in the city.  Their work is nearly complete and they are counting on you to find them further work so there is no interruption in pay.  You have no assignments lined up for them yet.  What do you do?

Would you…

a) Rally the team, gather ideas and move into execution mode

b) Explain the limitations of your office and say you’ll try your best

c) Create a project plan and assign accountabilities

If you picked “c” – that could work provided you have great depth in the industry and your people trust you.

If you picked “b” – that’s a very honest response and if you really feel that it’s okay to try, the staffing industry is probably not the right place for you at this time.  Once we commit to a client we simply have to make it happen.

The ideal response is “a”.  Successful staffing offices are dynamic, loud, fast-moving and collaborative.  No one succeeds on their own.  It’s a team approach toward taking on big challenges and producing solutions that helps clients win.

Readers who find this compelling are welcome to contact me for an informational interview about working in the staffing industry.  You can either post a comment below, or connect with me on one of my social media accounts.

Saying thank you to temporary and contract workers

June 7 through 11 is national Staffing for Canada week.  This is the time of year when we formally acknowledge and show appreciation to the thousands of individuals who accept temporary assignments with client companies across the country.

Following is excerpted from Gordon Campbell, Premier of British Columbia:

This annual, nation-wide event brings recognition to the temporary and contract employees in Canada.  These individuals provide their skills, professionalism, flexibility and adaptability to a wide range of industries and play an important role in the success of Canadian businesses.

Look around you this week and I’m sure you will find living examples of this group and their contribution.

Please make an opportunity to recognize any temporary and contract workers in your circle.  Click a share button and spread the word.