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Recruitment technology

Rethinking Recruitment: How To Locate Top Talent in a Changing Environment

Clare Hopping

Oliver Meredith Cox - Potential employees don't usually line up for you, much less wearing their job description on their shirt. Potential employees don't usually line up for you, much less wear their job description on their shirt.

Are you struggling to find the right candidate? Finding the perfect employee in a sea of applicants is no easy task, so we take a look at how you can revamp your scouting strategy.

A company is only as successful as its employees, and finding the best workers for your business environment is often a futile fight. Andy Headworth, a recruitment strategy consultant at Sirona Consulting, tells us that, in many sectors, there is a shortage of candidates with the skills companies are currently seeking.

Companies spend valuable time going through heaps of CVs – many of which are for poorly-suited candidates – to no avail, and still end up reporting talent shortages.

To intensify the issue, there remains the issue of upward mobility: frequently, better-paying employers cherry-pick the best workers at a small business, attracting them with more responsibility or a higher salary. How can you avoid the stack of scrap resumes, and immediately isolate the best applicants for your business?

Take Care of Your Talent

coworkers "The best recruitment strategy is a solid retention strategy," according to Forbes. People are seeking stable jobs, especially in today's tumultuous economy, so a company must prove to prospective employees that it will provide a secure work environment for them.

The best way to accomplish this is to take care of your own – prove to incoming workers that you value your current workers, and they will be more inclined to hop on board.

Recruiters for competing companies are on the hunt for fresh faces every day. Make sure your employees are looking forward to coming to the office each day, rather than looking at the exit door; if your employees are content where they are, the external scouts are less likely to lure them away.

CEOs and other executives with authority need to create the most comfortable workplace possible – a place where employees can enjoy their jobs.

Forbes also advises companies to be clear about what they stand for and know exactly what they are looking for, so when it comes to recruiting, they attract a smaller, but targeted group of potential candidates.

Cover the Basics

Andreas Klinke Johannsen/Flickr Andreas Klinke Johannsen/Flickr

Although it is always a good idea to update your recruitment strategy every now and then, you should ensure that your current methods are up to scratch. Headworth explains a few of the crucial basics of recruitment, one of which is making sure that the position you're looking to fill actually needs to be filled.

Take a look at your company's recent records. If this position has remained open for a while – and you've managed to cope without it – could it be more efficient to eliminate it altogether?

You'll also want to browse through your job adverts on boards and your websites. Are they appealing? Would they interest you if you were a potential applicant? If not, change your presentation. Focus on the important skills your business requires, rather than a stream of specifications.
Get Social and Get Satisfied

social media recruitingIt's the 21st century, and you have a wealth of advertising technology at your fingertips. Try taking the creative route, and put together an alternative online recruiting campaign. According to crewscontrol.com, including podcasts and videos on your career website will make your company stand out to applicants, especially younger ones.

Podcasts and videos are certainly not the only means of attracting new faces. Make sure that you are distributing information about opportunities at your company on social media platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.

Take a look at your current recruitment strategies and determine which ones successfully deliver candidates. Part of the process is making sure that you are tracking your success with data reports from recruitment agencies and job boards.

These services can let you know which of your recruitment campaigns are working, and might save you some money on the ones that aren't.

Be Resourceful

Headworth also advises company executives to encourage employees to advocate for the company, and even recruit on their own. They may know of potential candidates – friends on the hunt for work, or even recent college graduates just dipping their toes into the job market.

You can equip employees with the necessary information and tools: even an attractive business card, that employees can pass around at parties or other gatherings, is an inexpensive and effective investment. You might even consider offering current employees incentives for successful recruitment.

ERE, a recruiting community website, explains that employees are frequently the best agents to help you snatch up competitive talent.

First determine who your most reliable employees are: these are the people who contribute actively to your business community, and who can pinpoint an applicant with the right characteristics for your company. These valuable employees can help locate the people who do similar jobs for other companies.

You can then get to know and build a relationship with the talent worth pursuing. When it comes to hiring someone for a particular position, having a network of possible candidates reduces recruitment time – you'll probably immediately have a specific contact in mind.

Your employees and your colleagues can also tell you how they found their current jobs, especially what social networks and job boards they used. You will get a good idea where to focus your recruitment efforts. Also, don’t forget about past candidates: look into your database and send out messages to potential candidates or referrals.

Find the Best, Don't Fall Behind

As globalization intensifies competition in the workplace, you need to get creative with recruitment. For executives and recruiters, that means going the extra mile – and making sure that potential employees are willing to go the extra mile, too.

If you are barraged with applications for an open position, try integrating a self-selection process to find out which applicants are really interested. Invite all eligible applicants from the resume submission to an open group event. Many of the original applicants will be unlikely to show up, and you will have shrunk your candidate pool to a manageable size.

Business Insider recommends getting a good idea as to how people work in groups, so setting up simulation events is another effective means of narrowing the applicant pool. A group interaction is also a way to observe a specific applicant's character, working knowledge, and communication skills.

You and your current employees can engage with potential candidates – do a “speed-dating”-style interview with each of them, and see how they fit in with your existing community. You could even set up a few activities for the candidates to participate in, which will give you a better understanding of their passion for the work.

Creative recruitment entails creative search methods. Don't limit your sources of candidates to job fairs or industry conventions. Seek people out in their own environments, and they will feel more welcome in yours.

Try communicating with people in more casual settings; talk about recruitment at parties, sporting matches, or charitable events. Acting as a sponsor at a community event is a great way to demonstrate your company's amiable atmosphere, while simultaneously getting the word out to potential recruits.

A Strategy for the Future

Recruiting doesn’t have to be time-consuming and stressful. Revise your current strategy properly so you can determine what methods will bring you the talent you need, and remember never to neglect the talent you already have.

Keep in mind that your business will become an integral part of a candidate's life, should you choose to hire them. Forging a positive relationship with an employee, even during the recruitment process, will ensure the health and happiness of your workplace – your employees will love coming to work each day, and this love will generate the best products and services possible.

Clare Hopping

Clare Hopping has been involved in the recruitment of both full-time employees and freelance staff for ten years. She specialises in recruiting staff via social media and digital platforms.