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Productisation is “sales psychology 101”, according to Dougie Loan, Odro Client Services Director. But to put it simply, because I wasn’t actually sure what it meant either, productisation is taking your service and splitting it into different price options. 

In the recruitment industry, it’s taking your service, filling roles for clients but splitting it into different pricing options for clients to browse. The options are based on the tools you’re going to use to go about it, the amount of effort you would put in and the further value you can add to the client. They have a role, and you can fill it, but you’re letting them decide how you go about doing so, and paying for the level of service they need. The good bit is it’s the perfect way for you to show the value you can add, and getting the job exclusively or with an up-front deposit as a result. 

To answer the client’s question of “So, why you?”, Odro customers productisation model looks like this –  

You have “Product A”, your standard contingent model. The client gives you the vacancy details, you source candidates and send them over to the client to interview. Once that candidate has been placed, the client pays you. Let’s say an 18% fee. Easy peasy lemon squeezy. But we all know the issues with contingent work… there are other agencies. They may have better relationships with certain candidates than you, or they might just be lucky to pit you to the post and place a candidate first. 

With “Product B” you’re going for that sweet exclusive role. And how are you going to get it? By offering extra value for the same price, that’s how. For the same 18% fee, you’ll not only source candidates for the client but you’ll actually carry out the first stage interview for them too. The client no longer has to spend 20-60 mins interviewing candidates that they very quickly realize aren’t a fit for the organisation. Instead, they can watch a video which they can quickly turn off if the candidate isn’t for them. This service is effectively removing a whole element of the process for the client. You don’t charge any extra for the service, you just ask for some commitment from them; either in the form of a deposit which will be taken off the final payment or exclusivity. 

Your last product, “Product C” is your premium product. This is priced at 35%. Not only can you provide video as a value add, but you’ll also do testing, sponsor billboards, local radio adverts. You’ll hire out the Hilton for a candidate day and offer free cupcakes to all candidates that attend. You’ll shout about it from the top of the buildings, eat, sleep and dream this client’s role. 

The idea is the client isn’t going to go for the premium product, as no-one wants to be paying 35%, and if they chose Product B, they are getting additional services for the same price as Product A, just with a little bit of commitment to allow you to invest a bit more and effort into finding them the best candidates and speeding up their time to hire dramatically. 

5 benefits of productising

  1. Level the playing field. We always hear the phrase “people buy from people”, meaning we make decisions based on believing the people selling to us have the best experience in order to do a good job and we trust them to succeed. However, this is not actually always the case. If you, or your team, are lacking experience or skills, you can move the focus onto the value add.
  2. Differentiate. Stand out against your competitors by offering them something extra. You have video BD for candidate attraction, you can screen much faster and going on more than just a CV, you can remove their first stage. The shortlist they’ll receive from you is far likely to yield a perfect candidate, in up to half the time.
  3. Consistency. Deliver your products well and do so time and time again. Building a strong, organised brand. Give case studies and results from previous clients you’ve worked with for each product option, focussing on option B.
  4. Teamwork makes the dream work. Innovative thinking and new ideas delivering results are exciting! Get the team involved in coming up with new ways to add value to clients. Designing, testing and improving products brings everyone together.
  5. The stronger the product, the stronger the results. 

To conclude, productisation can, and will, get you exclusive roles. You’ll stand out against the competition because you’re not just going to complete the task at hand, you can actually make the client’s life much easier. And… everyone loves structure, having a clear pricing model shows you know your worth and you’ve really got your sh*t together. 

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