Best Recruiting Practices During a Down Economy

By now, most recruiting managers are dealing with the impact the economic downturn has had on both recruitment and talent management. During the “good ol’ days”, hiring managers and recruiters spent a majority of their time seeking out the best talent from small candidate pools. Now, we have large candidate pools coupled with a limited number of openings and in some cases, no openings. How can you make sure your organization’s recruitment practices are aligned with current economic challenges and your business goals? Following are some of the things you can do during these tougher economic times to ensure your company is on track for future successes.

Be Choosier
Not only are there more candidates, there are higher-quality candidates seeking jobs right now. Take advantage of this and exercise your right to be selective. Beyond the candidate’s qualifications, focus on culture fit, soft-skills and how truly passionate they are for your organization.

Build Candidate Pipelines
Use this time to start building up pipelines of potential high-quality candidates. For example, now is the time to reach out to star employees who left for greener pastures. During times like this, those pastures may not be so green and you can easily boomerang them right back to you. Similarly, you can also target individuals who “survived” layoffs or reorganizations and recruit away key talent who may have never considered leaving until now.

Leverage Employee Networks
Recruitment truly is the entire organization’s job and even more so if the recruiting function has been eliminated or scaled back (headcount and/or budget-wise). Utilizing other creative resources in order to bolster recruitment efforts can save both time and money. Tap into and leverage employee networks to find the exact talent and skill set you need. Employee referral programs typically produce high-volume and more importantly, high-quality candidates. You may need to get creative with incentives other than cash, but think out of the box and have fun with it (e.g., lunch with the CEO, extra day off, etc). In addition to Social Networks, blogs are another potential goldmine for promoting your organization and finding great talent. Find out if your star employees write blogs in their technical area of expertise and then leverage it into your recruitment process.

Refine Tools
Recruitment resources may be more limited; however, this doesn’t mean that recruitment stops. Now is the time to measure what works and what does not and what can be improved and what needs to be eliminated. Use this time to streamline and develop new approaches so when the market picks up, you are prepared.

Typically, to have a surplus of talented candidates is a recruiter’s dream; yet today’s market creates a completely different dilemma. Now is the time to ensure your recruiting practices are practical, flexible and innovative. A little bit of planning and prioritizing now will allow you to continue to make an impact into the future.

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[…] so and neither does Stan Shimizu of Resourceful HR. He penned an article recently that provided hiring best practices companies can employ in a down economy. Not surprisingly, none of them included the red herring or any other unethical tactics. Here are a […]