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Finding the Skilled Employees You Need to Grow

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As demand for skilled employees continues to rise, companies face a changing marketplace to find, attract and develop the skilled talent they need to grow their businesses.  On the one hand, changes in the recruiting marketplace have made it easier to search for candidates - and for candidates to find you. On the other, it is easier for your competitors to poach your employees, thus actually tightening the talent market.  The good news is that you can leverage the top recruitment techniques to attract and bring onboard the employees your business needs. 

Matching new hire skills to those necessary for job performance is a priority in recruitment. From training to job performance and longevity, employees whose skills meet recruitment needs are much more cost-effective as a whole.  Onboarding skilled employees can also reduce your recruitment costs as well as potential "brain drain". 

Recruitment techniques

Defining a strategy to get the skills you need

A well-defined recruiting strategy simplifies your search for talent.  A few well thought out steps, consistently performed by your HR department or external recruiting resource can narrow the field to candidates who are a fit for your company.  The same process can be used for internal hiring, since it incorporates all the steps you need to ensure the right employee is trained/maintained for the right job.

1)    Create accurate job descriptions, with exact skill sets and personality attributes necessary for a successful fit.

2)    Develop a profile of a successful candidate by examining existing employees in the desired position and amalgamating the skills necessary to be a top performer.

3)    Create your position marketing around the job description and profile and distribute to appropriate recruitment vehicles, both online and off.

4)    Cull submitted resumes for the best candidates then screen through telephone interviews, using a consistent set of interview questions pre-determined by the job requirements.

5)    Use an assessment tool (such as customized packages offered by McKinsey, Dale Carnegie or Hudson) to assess your potential candidates.

6)    Schedule face-to-face interviews, again using a set of consistent questions in order to fairly compare applicants.

7)    Select your candidate and make an offer.

While seemingly basic, defining and consistently working toward fulfilling your recruitment strategy will help uncover talent that will be an asset to your business plans and overall growth.

Building your Recruiting brand

Your company's recruiting brand becomes especially important in a tight labor market.  Competition for talent can be fierce, which is why your company needs to have a strong brand perception that supports the reasons employees want to work there.  Your brand will align employees and candidates with your company's vision, culture and purpose.  It is your "elevator pitch" to candidates, a clear, concise synopsis of what your employment offer means and why your company is the best at which to work.

Recruitment Branding Example: 

A mid-size architectural firm, was finding it difficult to successfully recruit young architects After performing an internal employee survey on the value of working at the company, as well as doing searches on social media and search engines for company mentions, the firm  determined that their inviting corporate environment as well as their LEED certified business and focus on environmentally sustainable building resonated particularly well with the younger generation of employees and architectural school graduates.  The firm developed a recruitment campaign targeting graduates that focused on 'Making a difference in your environment,' promoting both internal atmosphere and the firm's principles of quality building and renovating with a purpose.

Your brand should run through all your recruitment efforts - from the way in which job postings are written to the language used when interviewing candidates.   Many companies, such as TMP Worldwide, SmashFly and others, exist today to help you develop, shape and improve the way your company is perceived.

Trolling for talent

In this world of connectivity, it is not surprising that a huge portion of recruiting focus has turned online.  Social and professional online networks are playing an increasing role in recruitment (rising in importance over 15% in a single year), along with a company's own career website and Internet posting boards.1

While the number one source of top talent remains referrals and word of mouth1 from employees, business partners and good old fashion networking, never underestimate the value of social media.  Networks such as LinkedIn and GlassDoor are simply online extensions of face-to-face word of mouth.  They are powerful in their reach, and should be firmly entrenched in your recruitment strategies.

Recruiting outsourcing

Traditional recruiting companies can be found in abundance.  Large companies such as Korn Ferry or Russell Reynolds provide executive recruitment while others, such as Adecco, Robert Half and the like, provide recruitment with a primary focus on temporary services. A new wave of recruitment services, called RPOs or Recruitment Process Outsourcing companies, has evolved and is growing at a rapid rate.  These firms do not focus on recruiting or staffing, but rather on combining of demand services, technology and data. 

Companies like Pinstripe, Seven Step RPO and IBM/Kenexa all focus on creating an integrated recruiting process specifically for your company.  Most will immerse themselves in your culture to become intimately knowledgeable about your company in order to act as part of your team - not outside of it.  Branding, technology, social media oversight, data analysis, screening and interviewing, as well as working directly with your management team, are all part of their business services. 

Talent acquisition can make or break your company

Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower. 2  Nowhere is this sentiment more true than in your talent recruitment efforts.  Skilled employees are the essence of your business, and the backbone of your company's growth.  In this ever changing and increasingly complex talent acquisition marketplace, there is no time to waste in implementing a cohesive and integrated recruitment strategy with the innovative techniques and tools readily available to your company today.


1 2013 Global Recruiting Trends survey, LinkedIn,, accessed April 15, 2014

2 Steve Jobs., Xplore Inc, 2014., accessed April 15, 2014.


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