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For Brokers: Which Prospects Are Perfect for HRO?

Connecting prospects with the ideal outsourced option to manage human resources requires understanding their business structure and current HR challenges. While our Professional Employer Organization (PEO) solution successfully supports small and mid-size businesses in white collar industries, we recently launched Extensis Human Resources Outsourcing (Extensis HRO) to provide the same level of access to PEO service and support, while maintaining a greater level of control.


The difference between Extensis PEO and Extensis HRO is minimal, but the details are important. HRO clients still receive expert HR support, recruiting, onboarding administration, payroll, access to leading HRIS technology, and more, but HRO eliminates the co-employment structure; therefore, the company remains the employer of record. Additionally, HRO clients retain their own insurance and do not receive group benefits through their HR outsourcing partner’s master health plan.

Here’s a helpful analogy we use often: “PEO is like having a roommate – they’re involved in every aspect of making your household a success. HRO is like having a helpful neighbor – available when you need them, but only as close as you want them to be.”

Knowing which businesses are best suited for HRO enables you to focus more attention on selling services to prospects with the most to gain. Here’s how to determine which businesses are the right fit.


Certain employers achieve greater advantages from an HRO arrangement. Here are two key indicators your prospect might be ideal for Extensis HRO.

Medium to Large White-Collar Companies

White collar companies with 100 to 2,500 work site employee (WSEs) can benefit from HR outsourcing without relinquishing their existing health plan negotiation power. Organizations of this size will benefit from a configurable solution that grows with their business.

Grey/Blue-Collar Businesses

HRO is ideal for small and large grey- and blue-collar companies (50 to 2,500 WSEs) who want to retain insurance leverage and remain the employer of record.


Among the above two types of organization, here are more detailed methods of gauging whether or not HRO is the right solution for a particular prospect.

Growing organizations with limited HR departments

As businesses expand, HR departments take on more administrative burden, which can overload inexperienced or time-strapped in-house HR teams. Extensis HRO is ideal for organizations who have experienced (or are expecting) periods of significant growth and are looking to simultaneously streamline HR operations. HRO delivers administrative support, risk mitigation services, industry expertise, recruiting, a leading tech platform, and more, enabling internal teams to direct their focus toward HR strategy.

Clients who desire personalized service

HRO is designed for organizations who require attentive service in addition to leading technology. Many other outsourced HR solutions are primarily tech platforms, providing tools but limited support. Extensis HRO delivers both.

We’re a national HR provider specializing in providing configurable solutions for growing companies who seek bundled HR technology and service, tailored to their precise workforce needs, in order to boost efficiency, productivity, and ease-of-use. These businesses recognize the value of partnering with an agile provider, instead of trying to slot into a “one-size-fits all” process of standard services. We often use the analogy that working with Extensis is like buying a tailored suit vs. buying a suit off the rack.

Additionally, as a broker-only HR outsourcing provider, we rely on recommendations from our broker-partners. While other providers claim to deliver high service levels, our success depends on it.

Companies wanting to become more proactive about HR

Many organizations dedicate insufficient thought to their HR processes – until a major event upsets their business. COVID-19 sent many businesses scrambling, but the pandemic is just the most recent disruption in an ever-shifting HR landscape. Many companies have now scrutinized their HR policies and awakened to the reality that more preparation is required. With HRO, businesses gain access to experienced employment specialists, compliance teams, and legal resources. This access helps to avoid future turmoil and mitigate challenging circumstances in the event of unplanned developments.

Accessing the compliance and HR Event Specialists at Extensis provides organizations dedicated, experienced experts to turn to when an unforeseen HR event transpires in the workplace (i.e. a DOL audit, a harassment claim, social unrest, political turmoil, etc.) Most organizations think they have a strategy until they find themselves facing one of these unplanned HR events. Having the right partner in place provides peace of mind.

Organizations with unmet HR goals

Managing day-to-day details often leaves little room for businesses to achieve any headway on their HR objectives. We conduct an HR Review to discuss the business’ goals and initiatives, such as training, company culture, performance management, employee development, and more. From there, we develop an HR Roadmap with deadlines for each initiative, and check-ins throughout the process. This creates a closed-loop system, enabling HRO clients to make real progress on their goals.

Companies with disjointed solutions or disparate vendors

During discussions with potential clients, brokers often hear complaints of how prospects are tasked with managing multiple HR vendors or tech platforms. Acting as the go-between for multiple solutions is a major time waster for businesses. Consolidating human resources administration onto a single platform with a single service provider eliminates time-consuming runaround. With support from an experienced onboarding team, the transition process is less daunting than many prospects think.


Selling Extensis HRO to clients delivers an unexpected win for brokers: even if the prospect remains with their current broker for insurance, commission from a new HRO engagement with Extensis unlocks a fresh revenue stream. It also establishes the broker as a trusted resource moving forward. By evaluating prospects using the signs above, you’ll be able to quickly identify businesses for whom Extensis HRO is a smart solution and grow your book of business in new ways.

Do you have clients who could benefit from Extensis HRO? Contact us today to request a quote.

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