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Signature Consultants, a subsidiary of DISYS, is one of the top 10 largest IT staffing companies in the country. Founded in 1997, Signature connects today’s best tech talent with forward-thinking Fortune 500 and high-tech companies.
In 2020, Signature began evaluating automation tools. “The tipping point that prompted us to start the search was that we were trying to automate some of our sales processes,” explained Mandy Franje, Business Application Analyst at Signature. But like most staffing firms, 2020 arrived, and the firm had to change course from its original plan quickly.
“We went with Herefish by Bullhorn because we felt like it was the best solution to automate our sales processes,” Franje explained, “but then COVID hit, and all of our priorities shifted.” Suddenly, automating sales processes wasn’t so much of a priority, and deploying COVID-related communications—both quickly and en masse—took center-stage. But as the industry began to rightsize itself, the team has expanded their usage of Herefish, automating everything from data cleanliness to candidate pre-qualification.
“I can’t even tell you how many automations we have set up—probably hundreds,” Franje said. “Right away, we started using Herefish for communications internally and externally. And we have now gotten back to the original idea of automating sales processes,” she said. But the good news, Franje explained, is through the whirlwind of 2020, Signature was able to leverage Herefish automation for things they hadn’t previously considered. “We have simple but impactful automations,” she said.
In early 2020, the team received an interesting request from their largest national clients: They wanted a daily wellness check run on their consultants. According to Franje, if someone had to run this wellness check manually, it would have taken up a third of their time: “It would easily take three hours a day if we had to do this manually. With Herefish, it takes maybe 15 minutes. In a year, that’s 700-800 hours saved,” she said. “Now, we can focus on things that are more meaningful to our business. If we had to do this manually, I can’t even imagine what that would look like.”
And Signature’s client is impressed, too. “Our client couldn’t believe how we were getting this data, pulling it into a CSV, putting in some pivot tables, and sending them a nice little packet every day,” Franje said. “And for the most part, the automation just runs in the background, and we don’t have to do much with it regularly. So it’s a huge time saver for us that this is going on all the time.”
Staffing firms have long struggled with redeployment—a revenue-generating activity that’s often overlooked due to its manual nature in the face of new business. Franje shared that through a simple automated notification set up through Herefish, Signature could increase its redeployment metrics. “We have reminders that go out to account managers any time a consultant is nearing the end of their contract,” Franje explained. “We’ll remind them at certain points based on the estimated end date in Bullhorn.”
This set of notifications reminds Signature’s account managers to get in touch with the hiring manager and ask if there will be an extension on their placement. If not, the recruiter can redeploy the consultant for the next opportunity. “It creates an opportunity to keep having those conversations with hiring managers,” Franje said. “Our redeployment has been exceptionally high—around 30%—and Herefish has been a component of that success.” Signature has a robust and structured redeployment program and team, and Herefish has helped enhance Signature’s communication in that process.
Beyond redeployment lives consultant reengagement—that is, getting in touch with consultants who haven’t worked with your firm for some time. Through Herefish automation, Signature has been able to get in touch with previous consultants with whom they haven’t spoken recently. “We set up predefined conditions to reach out to these individuals, find out if they’re looking for a new opportunity, and get them in touch with the recruiter,” Franje said. “We actually got a few placements just from reconnecting with people we had a relationship with. That was probably one of my prouder moments,” Franje said.
Through automation, Signature is also able to save time pre-qualifying candidates. When a candidate applies to a job on Signature’s website, a Herefish automation sends out a pre-qualification survey and funnels the results back to the recruiting team. Then, when the recruiter speaks with that candidate, they have the pre-qualification questions ready to help determine what job would be the best fit for that candidate. Franje explained, “the answers to these questions will help determine the best fit for them. Maybe it’s not the job they applied for or maybe it’s something they haven’t posted yet because it just came in,” she said. “It’s been really successful.”
With 2020 in the rearview, the Signature team can now use Herefish for the purpose they had initially purchased the tool for—automating sales processes. Specifically, they want to automate contact statuses within Bullhorn to give junior salespeople a better understanding of their book of business.
Franje explained what this idea would look like in practice: “We look at how we define different statuses internally, and then we use those criteria to set automations on the back end.” Today, rather than manually changing a hiring manager’s status to ‘customer’ after a recruiter makes a placement, Herefish can automate the process by setting rules that define a customer as a hiring manager with a placement on their record.
Automating these processes helps with data cleanup and gives recruiters a more holistic view of their book of business. “We created this automation for our junior salespeople, but it benefits our whole sales team,” Franje said.
Franje even added that embarking on this automation journey through the sales process has helped the team tighten their sales processes. “Garbage in your data means garbage out. So if your data is cleaner and you can use Herefish to do that, it keeps everything humming along,” she said.
According to Franje, Signature is only just getting started on its automation journey. “With the merger of DISYS and Signature, we’re going to find ways to automate processes and be more efficient. I do not doubt that we’ll continue to figure things out, and that’s what I love about Herefish. They’re willing to have those conversations. I can share what I want to accomplish, and the Herefish team will come with ideas, ready to help me. I’m certain that there’s even more opportunity out there. We’re only scratching the surface.”