Bagging talent: How to recruit the best people

With chronic talent shortages, having the right process for picking the best people is vital
Turn to the HR team to find the right recruiter and get candidate feedback.
As demand returns to the economy, many organisations can’t find the people they need to grow. Talent shortages are rife, and are set to worsen over the next two years. Meanwhile, our latest data shows that 95 per cent of businesses are operating with limited capacity, and will have to hire in order to take on more work. In this environment, many employers are turning to recruiters to help them find talented candidates. So how, as a business, can you make the most of the recruitment process?

GET FEEDBACK WHEREVER POSSIBLE

Only 11 per cent of employers seek candidate feedback. But if you’ve invested in advertising and developing your brand, making sure that your frontline ambassadors are on message is critical. You need to know what candidates are saying about your business – especially those who haven’t been hired. Your recruitment partners should provide this data and help you improve your attraction process.

USE YOUR IN-HOUSE KNOWLEDGE

It’s really important that you select the right recruitment partner, and this needs to involve senior managers in procurement and HR. This isn’t just about cost effectiveness – you need to be assured that the candidates being put forward are high quality. HR should help define the contractual terms and the measures used to evaluate success so that price is not the only factor used when selecting your partner.

BALANCE PERFORMANCE MEASUREMENTS

Performance measures should always be included in your contracts with suppliers, so that you can properly evaluate return on investment. Ensure outcome measures are included – for example, targets around candidate feedback and retention figures for new hires – in addition to measurements to make sure you are getting value for money.

DON’T JUST FOCUS ON PRIME SUPPLIERS

When dealing with large employers, it’s common for the contracted recruitment agency to outsource resourcing activity to smaller agencies, and often these second-tier suppliers are forbidden to talk to the client. But quality recruiters have a choice about who they provide their best candidates to, so if smaller agencies feel disengaged, they could send their talent elsewhere. Make sure the smaller agencies feel included and recognised by meeting and motivating the whole of your recruitment supply chain. Building these relationships will enable you to tap into the expertise of specialist recruiters, who will have valuable insight into the labour market trends in your sector.

THE CANDIDATE IS KING

In a world where you are competing for talent, the experience of your job candidates needs to be as good as it can be. As an employer, define what you want this to be: understand what you want potential employees to experience when they engage with your organisation from the first time they see your job advert or look at your website to the moment they are offered the job. For those who join your organisation, make sure that this good experience continues.
Kevin Green is the chief executive of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation. Find out about the Good Recruitment Campaign at www.rec.uk.com/Goodrecruitment.

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