The Elite Recruiter Top 10 Countdown

Recently we participated in a closed-door meeting exploring the top techniques recruiting leaders are using to gain access to the best talent.  We discussed what Fortune 500 companies are doing and how we can use these same strategies for recruiting departments with a smaller budgets.

Let’s begin the countdown.  The top strategies below will allow you and your team to have a successful year of recruiting:

10. Flexible / Fluid Workforce

Organizations are more successful over time if they create a foundation of flexibility.  This can be achieved by hiring more “gig” or contingent contractors, or by fostering a culture where employees rapidly adapt to new roles on an as-needed basis.  In fact, one VP that attended our roundtable called 2020 the “Year of Internal Career Mobility” with a big emphasis on promoting internal candidates first. Many economists have anticipated a downturn in the market, and companies positioned for flexibility will be able to rapidly adapt to new emerging needs, trends, and challenges.

What you can do:

  • Assess your organization’s capacity and flexibility to support current needs.
  • Gather data that will allow you to adapt to market opportunities faster than competitors.
  • Find a partner experienced in managing your 3rd Party vendors help you focus on FTE needs.

9. Employer Branding for Competitive Advantage

Many companies focus on product branding.  But the firms with strong recruiting programs are investing in their employer brand at the same level as they invest in their product brands. Companies become known as great employers because they, and their employees, shout it from the rooftops. These firms provide measurable competitive advantage because every job posting is filled with many top applicants, beating out competitors’ year over year based on the quality of their team.

What you can do:

  • Partner with a third party employer brand capable of a data-driven approach to build your employer brand.
  • Create side by side sell sheets that compare your work environment to that of your competition. As one of our roundtable attendees said, “If you can’t pay more, find out the strengths of your company and your benefits in relation to their current employer.”
  • Measure your brand impact by the number of qualified applicants that come through internal employee referrals.

8. Collaborative Recruiting

Organizations that can be truly qualified as magnet recruiters involve everyone in the recruitment and brand building process.  They utilize employee and alumni referrals, hiring committees, and applicant management systems that integrate both managers and brand ambassadors.

What you can do:

  • Organize hiring teams to be involved in multiple hires. As they gain experience and hire more frequently, they become better at assessing and selling difficult-to-land candidates.
  • Focus on sourcing top referrals to reinforce, motivate and bolster your existing team. As the talent pool increases, everybody wins.
  • Include peer interviews and empower employee connections to build relationships with industry wide talent.

7. Recruitment Marketing

While your processes, technologies and business practices may be proprietary, applicants still need a clear picture of what it is like to work with your organization and to be a part of your team. Successful organizations raise recruitment marketing efforts to the level of product marketing.  They employ data-driven inbound marketing techniques and a variety of media channels including videos and podcasts.

What you can do:

  • Set goals for your inbound recruiting marketing. How many clicks, reads, views will you achieve from each recruitment focused content piece?
  • Track campaigns to see what channels generate the most inbound inquiries and applications.
  • Test, test, test to identify what messages, images and content resonate and result in action.

6. Practice Targeted Hiring

Recruiting leaders apply a data-driven approach to desirable prospect segments. By practicing targeted hiring they grow a diverse workforce that fosters insights, innovation, and stability.  Leading companies actively and strategically target diversity, mature workers, next generation hiring, and those with “future skills.”

What you can do:

  • Develop the business case around diversity and take a data-driven approach to diversity recruiting.
  • Look for ways to combat fixed thinking and monocultures in the workplace.
  • Target desirable future skills including rapid learning, innovation, speed, adaptability and being customer centric.
  • Focus on impossible to fill jobs like cybersecurity, machine learning or quantum computing.

5. Pipeline continuous recruiting

Continually building a talent pool of people attracted to your firm for future openings in order to avoid “panic sourcing.” Pro-active pipelining is one of the most cost-effective strategies a company can embrace.

What you can do:

  • Building talent communities – stretching out the hiring timeframe gives you more time to build relationships and to motivate difficult to recruit candidates to make a change.
  • Find ways to bring people in to your organization: sponsor or found an industry conference, proactively engage online communities, seek new ways to engage internships or professional development.
  • Engage former high quality employees with a “boomerang” program and encourage them to recommend their colleagues, interns or acquaintances.

4. Other technology applications

Beyond Al… applying other technologies including chatbots, automated/video interviews, virtual reality assessments, CRM, blockchain applications and automated recruiting processes.

What you can do:

  • Remote video interviews – reduce dropouts and time-to-fill
  • Interview self-scheduling – increases hiring speed
  • Chatbot’s provide answers and keep candidates engaged
  • Voice-activated full cycle self-service recruiting app for managers is coming

3. The application of AI / machine learning

Beyond Al… applying other technologies including chatbots, automated/video interviews, virtual reality assessments, CRM, blockchain applications and automated recruiting processes.

What you can do:

  • Use remote video interviews to reduce dropouts and time-to-fill.
  • Use interview self-scheduling to increase hiring speed.
  • Chatbot’s provide answers and keep candidates engaged.

2. Business impact recruiting

Focusing recruiting resources so that they produce the maximum measurable impacts on strategic business goals.

What you can do:

  • Convert Talent Acquisition results to their revenue impacts.
  • Focus on revenue generating/impact and innovation jobs.
  • Focus on high margin, high growth business units. 

1. Shifting to a data-driven recruiting

Where decisions are based on data and analytics that reveal what actions improve the quality of hire. We have all been beaten over the heat about data and analytics. I think we all agree that slowing down to measure critical KPI and metrics can decrease stress and allow us to be better recruiters. We agree all companies unique so your KPI & metrics should be customized for you and your team.

What you can do:

  • Focus on data driven actions:
    • Measure new-hire failure rates
    • Hiring manager “recruiting batting average”
    • Quality of applicants (percentage of qualifications met)
    • Quality of candidates that were not hired (missed)
  • Build an in-house Talent Intelligence and Research team.
  • Focus on the external side of recruiting data, like market availability and talent availability data.
  • Leverage contract recruiters or consultants to help you get started with your data strategy.

Looking Forward

When the highest performing companies recruit, they use vastly different strategies than the average players in their industry. Together, let’s make 2020 a banner year for creativity and innovation in the recruiting process.