You’ll Have to Think Outside the Box to Hire the Best Talent

In today’s job market, employers don’t have the luxury of waiting for qualified candidates to find them — employers need to actively seek them out.  With unemployment rates at historic lows, the talent your company needs is probably already employed, rather than actively seeking a new position.  Before resorting to costly headhunters or specialized recruiters, it’s important for employers to maximize their in-house recruitment strategies to hire the best talent:
Candidate Sourcing
Sourced candidates account for one third of all new hires; the second most common hiring basis behind direct hires.  Sourcing candidates may involve looking through past applicants and performing keyword searches through past job applicants and social media in order to identify potential new hires.  Current employees can be an invaluable, though often overlooked, resource in identifying candidates. Referrals of friends, family and former coworkers provide an efficient means of discovering new candidates, and often gives an employer the inside track to desirable talent that fits well with company culture.  If your company doesn’t already have an active employee referral program, it may be time to explore creating one. Your recruiting team can also take it a step further and proactively reach out to current employees that have the skillset that you’re looking to hire and asking them to recommend similar candidates for a specific position.
Nuanced Candidate Selection
Many employees believe that recruiters don’t accurately identify qualified job applicants, and it can be due to the simple fact that the recruiters have never done the job.  While many recruiters excel at picking out applicants that clearly meet the job criteria they likely do not possess the experience to identify candidates whose resumes aren’t a perfect match but who might have skills that are easily transferable to the needed position. This can be especially concerning in fields that are highly technical and where there may be multiple terms for one skill or kind of experience. If a candidate doesn’t phrase something in the exact way a recruiter is looking for the information to be presented, they may end up being overlooked entirely. In these cases, companies may benefit from consulting with currently employed subject matter experts in order to determine if these candidates may be a good fit before ruling them out altogether. Hiring managers can also help by making sure that they are very detailed and thoughtful in the descriptions and information that they give recruiters.
Boots on the Ground
Tradeshows and conferences can serve as an extremely valuable recruiting tool, if properly leveraged. Well-qualified professionals often attend these events to learn or present on topics relevant to the position you’re seeking to fill, but recruiters aren’t often there to seek out talent.   Attending sessions and presentations may help to identify innovative thinkers, and networking sessions are the perfect opportunity to make an introduction and gauge their interest in making a career move. Face-to-face meetings also make for impromptu interviews, allowing recruiters to dispense with threshold questions early on in the process before expending resources to try to source candidates for an open position. Additionally, by attending relevant industry events you’re showcasing your company’s commitment to that field and staying abreast of the latest trends, which is attractive to potential new-hires.

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