Gov. Andrew Cuomo made an unscheduled to WCNY’s The Capitol Pressroom Tuesday morning, defending his administration’s $20 million contract with a Rochester-based firm that will help with state hiring.

The state is retaining the firm Datrose to conduct “talent acquisition services” in a five year agreement, according to The Daily News.

But Cuomo in the interview noted the state so far has only spent $160,000 on the recruitment service fees, which is designed to “professionalize” hiring and move away from the old appointments office in the Executive Chamber.

The contract amount itself is capped at $20.6 million.

“We wanted to professionalize it,” Cuomo said of the state’s hiring practices. “We wanted to get a real recruitment firm. It’s hard to get talent in state government especially with the salaries we offer.”

Cuomo insisted attracting talent and bringing down the budget can happen simultaneously.

“It’s about time the state professionalized the recruitment operation,” he said. “These are real jobs and they’re real important.”

Hiring in the executive branch has often come under scrutiny, no matter the administration. The New York Times reported earlier this year the Empire State Development Corp. had attracted a number of employees who were the children of high-dollar Cuomo donors.

Administration officials contended at the time the workers were all qualified for their posts.