It's easy to get stuck in a cycle of working reactively as a result of your clients' needs as a recruiter. But as we're now in a very candidate-driven market, we need to switch to a much more proactive way of working if we want to improve our success rates and decrease our stress levels!
And the key to working proactively in a way that gets results? Create dynamic recruitment talent pools! Read our tips on how to foster those you already have so they do the tricky task of candidate sourcing for you.
How talent pools make recruitment easy
Whether you have a structured ‘talent pool’ in the form of a recruitment database or you’re nurturing a solid candidate community on Facebook or Twitter – you’ve got pools of potential candidates ready for you to engage with.
These candidates have had contact with you in some shape or form before, and they’re a captive market for you to go back out to. Often they're passive candidates that aren’t on the hunt for a role, but present the right opportunity to them and they’re ready to talk.
Think of this process as an egg hunt: it’s about solving the clues before your competitors do to make sure you find the chocolate eggs first!
How to Make the Most Out of your Talent Pools
Continuously assess talent needs
Finding the right candidate at the right time is one of the most difficult parts of recruitment, so what do you do when you find the chocolate egg before you’ve even started the egg hunt?
Use the egg to mould where the hunt takes you!
In other words, once you have a star candidate, work to engage with clients that may have a need for their skills. This can take time and no doubt requires additional effort, but you’re one step ahead of the game and can therefore place candidates your competitors haven’t even come across yet.
Guide candidates through from placement to promotion
How many people do you know who have stayed in the same job at the same company for their entire career? I’d put money on it being a rare occurrence. Most people change jobs every few years, and talent pools in recruitment make monitoring that progression much easier.
Regularly check in with candidates to keep them ‘warm’ – this will keep you at the forefront of their mind when they do feel ready for a new challenge. This is especially important for candidates you’ve placed; they’ve clearly had a positive experience with you, so check in with them every now and again to ensure they come back to you.
Don’t discard previous applicants
The number of applications you receive for advertised jobs can vary heavily; but it’s not often you get one superstar applicant and no other applications. Don’t discard these CVs, there are potentially dozens of people that have the appropriate skills and fit for another position with your client, or with another one of your clients altogether.
Ensure you’re providing a consistently high quality service – provide feedback and reasons why CVs haven’t progressed or interviews were not successful, and candidates will be much more receptive to another role when you approach them.
Ultimately, to build effective and efficient talent pools, recruiters need to keep candidates warm and continue to engage even when it doesn’t look like they’re a good match for the role you have here and now, because they may well be a perfect fit for the role you’re working on next week or next year.
Don’t panic in response to getting a tricky role in from a client; search through your database and work to find candidates that other recruiters might miss. There’s gold in your database!
Heidi is PhD student at the University of Aberdeen. Her research focuses on the issues surrounding the recruitment of patients into clinical trials.