RPO Experts Share Insights on Emerging Themes in Global RPO

by Tim Plamondon . .


Businesses are increasingly turning to Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) engagements as a strategic solution for their talent acquisition needs, according to the Everest Group research findings. To meet this growing demand, RPO providers are investing in three key areas -- market intelligence, technology, and advisory and consulting services -- to set themselves apart from the competition in the market. Everest Group analyst Sailhesh Hota believes these emerging themes will shape the future of RPO offerings for enterprise customers looking for competitive advantages from their most strategic sourcing partners.

During our 2023 Global RPO Expert panel, Lokesh Goyal and Sailesh Hota, Practice Directors with Everest Group and leading RPO analysts, discussed Everest Group's recent research findings on the current state of the global RPO market, the challenges businesses face with hiring, emerging trends, and how RPO leaders can prepare for the future of talent acquisition.

Over the past few weeks, we published a blog post focusing on the expert panel's discussion on the current state of the global RPO market and a second post zooming in on the top five challenges today's RPO buyers want RPO providers to solve. 

In the third post of our four-part blog series, we focus on emerging themes in the global RPO market. Everest Group analysts expect these emerging themes of market intelligence, technology, and consulting and advisory services to shape the future of RPO offerings for enterprise customers looking for strategic advantages.

Watch the webinar for a complete analysis of the emerging themes and future outlook of the global RPO market


Market Intelligence

Staying up-to-date with the latest market trends and insights is crucial. Fortunately, RPO buyers are more aware of this fact than ever before. According to Hota, RPO buyers are increasingly looking for RPO service providers who can offer them more comprehensive market intelligence, such as talent metrics – acquiring skill and talent demographic data and improving ESG and DEI metrics – and financial data – wage rate fluctuations, inflation trends, and cost of living adjustments. In addition, many RPO buyers want to gain deeper insights into competitive intelligence to understand their competitors' actions. Moreover, these buyers want their service providers to translate this data into actionable insights and teach them how to use it effectively. For many RPO vendors, this capability sets them apart from internal HR teams. Hota believes that there's no doubt that market intelligence will continue to be a key focus for RPO buyers in the future.


Technology is becoming increasingly essential to complete various tasks, and talent acquisition is no exception. The RPO industry has recognized this and has made significant strides in catering to the technology needs of HR and TA leaders. Hota observed that Everest Group research indicates that RPO providers are developing tech-based solutions to cover the whole range of talent acquisition processes, including analytics, technology platforms, process improvement tools, and point solutions. However, acquiring and integrating these technologies into an organization can pose a significant challenge for HR and TA leaders. To assist with this, RPO service providers are forming partnerships with businesses to integrate the technology better and understand the workforce and talent acquisition processes. Hota predicts that with such expertise in integrating technology with talent acquisition processes, RPO service providers will become an even more invaluable business partner.

Consulting and Advisory Services

Businesses today are looking for more than just a fundamental solution to their recruitment problems. Everest Group research has revealed that consulting and advisory services related to workforce and talent acquisition have seen a surge in demand in the past two years. As a result, Hota said, RPO providers have invested in these capabilities to take advantage of this opportunity. They now offer advisory and implementation services for technology, diversity/equity/inclusion, assessment/selection, EVP/branding, and channel strategies. These RPO providers have even partnered with more generalist firms for larger transformation projects, creating a unique niche market. This development has enabled RPO providers to cater to the complex needs of enterprises, thereby making the recruitment process seamless and efficient.

Watch Sailesh Hota explain the data showing why these value-added RPO services have increased in popularity.

RPO providers' services are rapidly evolving as larger firms increasingly offer consulting and advisory services to assist internal teams in resolving recruitment-related problems. Companies are becoming sophisticated in their recruitment strategies, and RPO providers are stepping up to help companies with this challenge. According to serial RPO entrepreneur Kim Davis, consulting services are far more prevalent among larger RPO providers than smaller to mid-sized ones, where services are relatively new. Joe Marino, Chief Operating Officer with Hueman People Solutions, highlighted that the consulting and advisory services are highly valuable for their focus on recruitment strategy and tech stack while allowing internal teams to focus more on people and accountability. Consequently, consulting and advisory services are becoming a go-to for companies seeking cost-effective and efficient ways to handle their recruitment challenges.

To sum up, companies increasingly turn to RPO as a strategic solution for their talent acquisition needs. As such, organizations that understand the importance of access to market intelligence, competitive insights, and consultancy expertise will succeed tremendously in meeting their recruitment goals when they partner with reputable RPO providers. Market intelligence, technology, and advisory and consulting services are emerging themes that will shape the direction of RPO offerings over the next few years. As Sailhesh Hota suggests, enterprise customers seeking an edge will want an RPO provider as their strategic partner.

With RPO offerings and engagements continuing to evolve, your organization can benefit significantly from staying on top of the most recent industry trends. To help you do this, we invite you to watch the 2023 State of Global RPO Market webinar so you can stay ahead of the curve in hiring high-performing personnel.

2023 Global RPO Expert panel blog series:

RPO Experts Remain Positive About Global RPO Market's Future

2023 Insights on The Top Challenges RPO Buyers Want Solved

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