what are pharmaceutical recruitment agencies
7 March 2022

Recently, there’s been an almost unprecedented demand for reliable pharmaceutical recruitment agencies. The pharma sector has been under immense pressure during the pandemic, which has severely affected a range of professions within the sector. Because of workforce shortages across the entire system, the recruitment landscape within the field has shifted, with a huge surge in vacancies. In these trying times, the services of a pharmaceutical recruitment agency can significantly help healthcare companies who want to recover from staffing deficiencies.

Why Consider Outsourcing?

By now, you may have already exhausted all possible traditional routes to fill vacancies within your organisation. Online job boards and word of mouth referrals may have proven helpful and effective, but over the longer term, they are unlikely to be able to sustain a fast-growing company.

Posting vacancies on a series of platforms is just one aspect of the whole business of recruitment. From screening candidates to conducting multiple interviews and verifying qualifications and track records, the effort and time required of an in-house recruiter to fill vacancies is likely to exponentially increase as the organisation adapts to the demands placed on it by current events.

Recruitment within such a highly specialised sector is necessarily a lengthier and more labour-intensive process. Typically, in the applied science field, it’s also a more competitive process in view of the qualifications and expertise required. This means the hiring period can take longer, often to the detriment of the day-to-day running of any healthcare setting that needs staff to cope with increasing demand. But taking shortcuts within the process is not an option when filling vacancies in such a vital field.

With the services of a pharmaceutical recruitment agency, you can bypass a lot of the legwork surrounding recruitment, so you can focus on achieving results and long-term progress.

What Should You Look For?

If you are ready to look for an agency to help you source employees, we recommend discussing with your team which recruitment business model is the most appropriate approach. Agencies usually offer two types of schemes:

1. Contingent Model

With this option, the agency is paid for every candidate they put forward that the company accepts. This works well for entry-level job openings where volume matters and for situations where your company is working with more than one recruitment agency. The agency is more likely to secure applications from multiple qualified candidates to maximise its chances of filling the role with one who is acceptable.

2. Retained Search

The Retained Search model, however, is recommended for highly skilled positions. The role of the agency in the recruitment process becomes far more instrumental as it essentially functions as an extension of the organisation. This model covers more than just the bare minimum of matching the candidate’s skills to the position’s job requirements. The agency will ensure that each individual put forward for the role has also undergone holistic assessments to determine their cultural fit, emotional intelligence, and overall ideologies.

Once you’ve settled on the most suitable business model for your organisation’s requirements, the next step is to work out what you are looking for in such an agency. This is essential to ensure that the pharmaceutical recruiters you engage are capable of attracting qualified candidates that are a good match for your organisation. Below is a list of what to look for.

1. Specialises in the Pharmaceutical Sector

Ideally, you will find an agency that is already well-established in the pharmaceutical world. This credibility will help them draw in more skilled candidates than generic recruiters may manage to find. Not only that, but that specialism will ensure they can offer you the bespoke services and data you require.

2. Has a Great Reputation

Agencies can typically provide client reviews, but good agencies will go the extra mile to demonstrate their abilities and efficacy, by, for example, sharing case studies. These articles will offer you real insights into how the agency’s services work in practice. You can assess the agency’s methodologies and approaches to the challenges it has faced. You can also observe the level of expertise their agents have in this field and weigh up whether they have the capacity to have a positive impact on your organisation.

3. Adapts to Your Company Values

The recruitment agency will take the time to get to know your organisation so they can represent your company’s interests and values. They will acknowledge the responsibilities this brings. Make certain they understand and practise your core values when processing candidates.

Start with Star OUTiCO

We’re quite simply one of the best pharmaceutical recruitment agencies in the sector. Our access to top candidates is unmatched by any other recruiters. As a resourcing expert in healthcare, we guarantee results through our Listen, Tailor, and Deliver methodology.

Our consultants provide unparalleled insight backed by data and years of experience in the sector.  With almost two decades in manpower-sourcing and specialisation in the pharmaceutical field, you can expect us to develop solutions that will boost your company’s growth by providing you with a healthy roster of skilled professionals.

Contact us today. Send us an email to, and our team will get back to you to discuss our services and what you can expect from them.

where to find pharmaceutical recruitment agencies


What are the most in-demand roles in the pharmaceutical sector?

Mainly due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the pharmaceutical sector has seen an increase in hiring, especially within the Research and Development space. It’s likely that the pandemic will exacerbate the existing shortage of talent and the difficulty organisations experience when filling these roles. A good pharmaceutical recruitment agency can help ensure your organisation remains competitive when seeking out new employees.

What is a healthcare recruitment agency?

A pharmaceutical recruitment agency helps companies in the field to find and engage the best and brightest candidates who can positively contribute towards their employers’ goals. Recruitment agencies focus on reducing the time taken to fill vacancies with high-calibre candidates and also help alleviate the workload of healthcare companies, allowing them to focus instead on their core strengths.

What do healthcare staffing agencies do?

A good pharmaceutical hiring company will have a network of skilled healthcare workers, to be able to connect employers with the best candidates for their vacant roles. A recruitment agency is constantly scouting for the best healthcare talent in the UK and can proactively approach ideal candidates for roles even if they are not actively looking for a new position.

How does a pharmaceutical recruitment agency source candidates?

A good pharma hiring company doesn’t simply rely on the traditional acquisition channels when seeking out new candidates. Instead, it widens the field by proactively sourcing quality personnel via its own networks, through multi-platform campaigns on social media, and by representation at local recruitment days and graduate fayres, for instance.

Why does the NHS use agency staff?

The quality of care that NHS hospitals offer depends on having skilled healthcare professionals. There are currently growing shortages of qualified staff, and recruitment is complex and time-consuming. Pharmaceutical recruitment agencies contribute to cultivating and finding the right people for clinical/non-clinical roles. Their experience means vacancies can be filled more efficiently, enhancing patient safety and reducing administrative burdens.

Is it worth using a recruitment agency?

A good healthcare hiring company is an investment. It can be used to fill roles of all types, from entry-level to senior positions on any basis, from short-term cover to full or part-time roles. As recruitment agencies have a vast network of skilled workers on their books, vacancies can be filled quickly and efficiently.

how to choose the best pharmaceutical recruitment agencies

Tips for Choosing a Healthcare Recruitment Agency

Before partnering with a pharmaceutical recruitment agency, ensure it is well-established and has a healthy network so that it can connect you to some of the best professionals in the sector.

Look into their area of specialisation or the healthcare field they are known for to ensure it matches your requirements.

Lastly, check their credentials in terms of screening applicants and their success in connecting them with roles.

Tips on Promoting and Marketing a Pharmaceutical Company

The pharmaceutical sector is a highly competitive field. Here’s how to stay ahead of others in the field:

  • Secure sufficient funding to keep operations running.
  • Research your competition and determine your company’s USP.
  • Offer competitive and attractive recruitment packages and benefits.
  • Create engaging web pages, social media accounts, and advertisements to boost your online presence.
  • Ensure your workspace has a high-speed internet connection so employees can do their jobs efficiently and remotely.
  • Source highly skilled, driven employees at all levels. Consider using a specialist recruitment agency to secure the best calibre staff.

Factors to Consider When Hiring a Recruitment Agency

Pharma companies should practice due diligence when deciding which of the various pharmaceutical recruitment agencies in London to hire. Finding the right one will extend your range when sourcing suitable candidates and save much time and effort.

Look for a healthcare hiring firm that practises open, professional communication. Check their processes for screening and hiring applicants match or exceed your own standards.  

Read independent reviews from previous clients to gain insights into how they operate. And finally, ensure your chosen agency has a wealth of experience in the pharmaceutical sector to ensure they have the market knowledge needed to source the best applicants.

Importance of Effective Recruitment

There are various benefits that a pharmaceutical hiring agency can offer, both to businesses and applicants. These include the following:

  • Recruitment firms can cater to niche markets and understand the sector as much as applicants do.
  • Employers and recruitment agencies work hand-in-hand. Agencies can deliver useful insights to businesses.
  • Agencies have the expertise and resources to screen applicants and choose the best from the pool of possible employees.
  • Agencies can uncover sensitive information and conduct confidential negotiations that may otherwise be difficult or awkward for the hiring company to achieve.

If you are struggling to fill roles within the biotech and pharmaceuticals sector or are looking for new talent and experts to outsource the recruitment process to, Star OUTiCO can help you with your goals. Contact us today.