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Excellence in Recruiting

Online Recruitment Strategies & Best Practices

3 Simple Steps for sourcing in 2012


There have been many descriptions to summarise recruitment in 2011, from cost cutting to understanding social. While the words used will differ from person to person, I think that there was a realisation among the masses that recruitment has and is continuing to change and that using methods that were considered as recruitment best practices in the noughties, are in many cases are becoming out dated now.

There are a number of reasons for this which include:

  1. Changes in how people use the internet, particularly social media, which ultimately changes how applicants search for jobs.
  2. The changing economic climate has ensured that more people are unemployed, resulting in much higher volumes of applications for many positions.
  3. The war on talent has become global, making it more difficult for many organisations to find skilled talent, and when they do; they face increased competition for these individuals.

So for 2012 regardless of what your specific tactics are in relation to using social media, internal applications, referrals, networking, word of mouth, recruitment agencies, mobile etc, you should ensure that you have solid strategies in place for the following three sources (of filling job vacancies):


Applicant Sourcing Strategy


Direct Sourcing; this means having a strategy in place for being able to source applicants directly, including knowing what roles to do this for and how to do this. It may include using your CV database, Boolean internet searching or using targeted referral schemes to be able to identify, engage with and ultimately employ top talent.

Direct Applicants; maximise the opportunity for applicants to apply directly to your organisation. This includes identifying and communicating effectively your employee value proposition and creating a strong employer brand. For instance, making it clear what makes a successful employee in your organisation, what will your organisation offer employees that is attractive to them and ensuring that your organisation is viewed positively in the marketplace.

Next, make it easy to apply! Don’t take arrogant approach that your company is the best out there so if people really want to work there they will apply….this approach is not effective, and you can guarantee that if your competitors take a better approach, they will get the top talent time and time again over your organisation.

Your corporate careers site is at the hub of this but it also extend to PR channels, social media and anywhere else your organisation is represented publicly.

Look at where you face competition for your desired talent and ask the question: why would they want to work for your organisation over another?

Job Advertising; job boards are not dead and in some cases are the most efficient way to fill vacancies. Job boards are not however as effective as they used to be, particularly in the way in which some organisations have depended on advertising directly themselves or using agencies who subsequently advertised on their behalf.

When using job boards, one must consider the following:

Success = Low cost & High Conversion Rate

With high volumes of applications coming through from job advertising, many recruiters are becoming overwhelmed and not responding to applicants, causing a poor employer experience which has an impact on direct sourcing and direct applications. To solve this some organisations are paying (sometimes) unnecessary money on software solutions to carry out the selecting for them. I am fully in favour of using technology to screen but this should be done sensibly and in many cases the functionality within an Applicant Tracking System will suffice for first line screening.

The main lesson to be learnt in relation to adverting is to be clever about how this is done and reduce the need to bring unsuitable applicants into the process in the first place.

If recruiters can get these strategies right, and strive towards excellence in recruitment, they can help deliver a much greater return on their recruitment activities for 2012.

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