Case Study: Compliance Process Support – Reference Checking


Arpeo Solutions was approached by a leading UK recruitment agency working in the education sector. They had worked hard to build a great reputation of providing high quality candidates for day-to-day, short-term and long term placements within their niche area of expertise. This was based on a stringent vetting process which included document collection, reference checking, qualification checks and face-to-face interviews.


This stringent vetting process was essential to deliver high quality candidates for their valued clients. However with an ever increasing number of candidates needing to be processed it was slowing down the recruitment process.

In particular the gathering of references was a big challenge as the busy administration team simply did not have the time to fulfil their day-to-day duties within the office and chase references to have candidate ready to start work within their 5 day deadline.

This was resulting in a loss of business, potential loss of candidates to competitor agencies as they were able to process them faster ready for work.

Due to the strict requirements of their sector there was also a real concern about the quality of the work delivered. There was some initial apprehension about outsourcing this critical process.

Our Solution

Our PRINCE 2 qualified Project Manager visited the client offices and took time to understand the current process and its bottlenecks.

We then provided a modular and flexible support solution which was based on focussing on core parts of the process which were causing the most disruption – reference checking.

After 2 hours training on their bespoke candidate management system Arpeo were able to liaise directly with candidates to gather their reference details, generate the relevant reference forms, and share with the name referees. When then chased these references in line with an agreed schedule to ensure that these were in place ready for the candidate to start work within 5 days or less.

References were checked against the detailed criteria required to be accepted and proactively requested additional information or references from other individuals where required to ensure the candidate was ready to start work.

This was trialled with one of their offices based in central London process liaising directly with over 100 candidates per week. Weekly calls were held with key member of the team and the client to track progress, review the process and monitor the quality of output.

We also put in place a flexible option to increase the service at different times of the year to cover subsequent offices during holiday periods to ensure a consistent candidate experience.

The Results

As a direct result of the service Arpeo delivered:

  • Over 100 candidates process every week
  • 26% of references returned in the same day
  • 83% of candidates ready to work within 1 week or less

The business was also able to refocus their administration team to concentrate on higher value tasks including holding more face-to-face interviews with candidates, concentrate on building a strong marketing strategy for the business and working closer with related charities.