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Bespoke, Rapid & Multinational: the Build & Transfer RPO Model


Marketing Solutions Company


Hiring across multiple locations


Bespoke RPO solution

What was the impact?
  • 45 new hires across 5 locations

  • Improved in-house interview process

  • Reduced time to hire

  • Improved quality of new hires

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When a successful young company merges with a larger multi-location organisation, a rapid increase in headcount may be required in order to take full advantage of the synergies. This was precisely the situation faced by creative digital marketing agency that worked with us.

In order to help the client through this transformation M3S recommended a six-month recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) solution to recruit the right talent across a range of professional disciplines. The M3S Build & Transfer model delivered sustainable benefits after the RPO contract terminated.

The client

The company is a digital marketing company that specialises in “building delightful connections” between brands and customers. It has been recognised as one of the fastest growing start-ups in Singapore. 

The challenge

Following this merger, the board of the company recognised a need for a considerable increase in headcount across all locations, most notably Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines and Singapore, within a short period of time; 45 hires in total within four months. This paved the way for discussions around a flexible and cost-effective recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) solution.

The complexity of hiring not only across several geographies but also for a variety of roles, including finance, IT, sales, marketing and HR, in both permanent headcount and full-time contractor positions, called for a multi-channel approach to sourcing and a solution that would be sustainable in the long term.

The solution

M3S designed a bespoke hybrid RPO solution, which involved building a talent acquisition function, recruiting the vast majority of roles and then transferring the processes and the recruiter to enable the company to manage talent acquisition in-house: the Build & Transfer model.

We found an onsite recruiter for the company within a week, supported by our Singapore office with 30 personnel. M3S sourced talent via several channels, including job boards, LinkedIn, market mapping, referrals and networking – as well as by mining M3S’s own extensive talent database.

The benefits

M3S not only hit the targets for all locations but also offered advice and support on hiring strategy. Among other things, M3S improved the interview processes and the on-boarding experience, reducing time to hire while improving the quality of new hires. In the early discussions, attrition was identified as a key problem so these process improvements helped to ensure that the entire recruitment cycle was a more positive experience for all parties.

The Build & Transfer model offered the company the speed of delivery, assurance of supply and long-term control that the company was seeking. First, M3S hired and trained a person who would become the company’s own talent acquisition specialist, then built the processes and the workflows to be transferred to the company, while also building a talent pool specifically for the company. This was handed over at the end of the project to support future hiring needs, making the company less dependent on agencies from the moment it started to do its own recruitment.

The M3S Programme Manager, commented, “The the company project was a thrilling challenge because there were so many dimensions to the client’s brief. The optimum solution in this case was an end-to-end recruitment service that covered sourcing, screening, assessment, shortlisting and candidate care and management. In addition to all of this we provided support on offer-management, compliance checks and on-boarding for all new hires. These processes were then transferred to the company’s in-house TA function.

“We managed the geographical dimension by placing an internal recruiter with the company in Malaysia, who handled all of the hires outside Singapore, while the Morgan McKinley team handled local Singapore hires. This proved to be a cost-effective and flexible approach, enabling us to meet all targets.”

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