Best Vendors for Human Resources Departments

Human Resources departments have to constantly keep up with a huge variety of demands.  The fewer people who work in the HR Department, the more those employees have to try to be competent professionals in all the different areas of expertise.  That can leave the HR team stretched thin and vulnerable to mistakes and risk. 

Fortunately, there are a range of vendors who can provide the external support needed to ensure HR is fully operational and performing well.  External vendors provide the added benefit of not adding to a company’s payroll taxes.


Recruiters look for, assess, and attract talented individuals to work for a company.  The term headhunter is associated with recruiters who find and bring in management level employees. Specialty hiring firms provide recruiting services, but for a very specific type of employee, or employee with a niche subset of experience or education.  All three are external vendors who can assist HR in finding the right employees.

Temporary Hires

Sometimes businesses need an in-house employee, but only for a specific project.  Temporary hires can be tricky.  When looking for temporary help, companies want the quality of a permanent hire.  However, they don’t want to pay the benefits or salary of a long-term employee.  That can make it difficult to attract the right kind of talent for the project at hand.  There are the standard temp agencies that can help with general, typically lower-level jobs.  There are also professional companies that have caught on that there is a niche to be filled in providing high end expertise for temporary employment.

For example, companies looking to attract in-house counsel to help with a quick merger, litigation, or regulatory audit may need more help, but only for a limited time.  Using an attorney secondment, which is when a lawyer joins a team of in-house lawyers for a set period of time, can solve the problem.  It allows the company to employ someone specialized in that type of highly skilled, quick hire for a finite period.  Outsourcing provides enough flexibility that companies can often take on wish list projects, like updating old contracts or employee handbooks.

Background Checks

Finding and on-boarding new employees costs precious time and money.  The departments bringing in the new employee will invest their own resources in training that new person.  HR teams need to be sure they are hiring the right person the first time.  More and more, companies are doing a deeper dive into candidates, especially those who will take on key positions.  Private investigators can help companies look for red flags like criminal backgrounds, heavy debt, negative notoriety, or use of social media that would create a risk to the company’s reputation.

Drug Testing

Outsourcing drug testing is a given for all but the largest companies that utilize random testing as part of standard operating practice.  Every city has labs that will run all types of blood and urine tests.  Some cities even have vendors who will come in-house, to streamline on-boarding.


Another extremely common vendor is for payroll.  Using a payroll specialist alleviates the need for a company’s staff to stay abreast of all payroll regulations across every country, state and municipality where employees are located.  Let a payroll company handle awkward deductions and garnishments also.


One of the worst parts of working in human resources is letting employees go, especially when it is for corporate restructuring reasons, not wrong-doing.  Companies facing large-scale layoffs can engage third party consultants who will sit down with employees being let go to explain the termination process, hold exit interviews, and extend severance packages. 


Whether the company itself is relocating and taking top employees with it, or the company has found its dream candidate and is willing to help that person make the move to join the team, HR can smooth the way by hiring a relocation expert.  Depending on what level of assistance is needed, relocation experts can help with the physical packing and moving, selling their current home, helping the new employee find suitable new housing, and helping to unpack and set up the new home.  Some relocation specialists will also smooth out things like finding schools and services the person needs. 

Benefits Administration

Benefits administration typically includes handling all of the operations needed to provide employees with health insurance, vision and dental insurance, disability coverage, workers compensation, flexible spending plans, and retirement benefits.  Companies who want to offer good benefits without the hassle of working with both the variety of employees’ needs and the rules and procedures of the various insurance and benefits providers the company uses can hire external companies who are experts at navigating and juggling all that information.