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Recruiting Stars: Top 10 Tips for Recruiting Great Candidates

Four More Ideas About Recruiting Candidates

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Looking for additional ideas about recruiting candidates who are potential star performers? Here are several more of my favorite ideas for recruiting candidates.

Maintain Frequent Contact With Interested Candidates

Don't let these potential employees submit their resumes and never hear from you again either. You'd lose all the momentum you just spent time developing with the favored few. Just as I recommended earlier with employee networks and professional contacts, continue and nurture the relationship.

Enable interested candidates to subscribe to the company newsletter; consider writing a mini-newsletter just for them. Follow-up all website submissions with a greeting that thanks the individual for their interest in your company. Send a periodic update about your job openings. Invite the potential employee to visit your organization when they are in the area. Your professional, ongoing contact with interested people ensures recruiting success.

Become an Employer of Choice for Recruiting Candidates

Think about what a potential employee considers before agreeing to join your organization or business. Are you stable, making money and growing? Are you employee-friendly? Does your mission catch the mindshare and/or the heartstrings of the people you most want to recruit? Will a new employee feel part of something bigger than themselves if they join you? Will your organization nurture their talent and provide exciting opportunities for challenge and professional growth?

If you can answer these questions affirmatively, analyze every component of your recruiting process to make sure that you are sending these messages. If you want to be an employer of choice, you must act like an employer of choice. Further more, you must communicate this commitment to your prospective employees.

People look for little things - that are really big things - such as noticing whether you return phone calls promptly. They observe when all interviewers repeat the same questions. They are aware that you responded to acknowledge receipt of their resume. They appreciate a phone call when someone else is picked for the job they wanted. (Yes, you still need to send a letter to the people you interviewed, but the more informal follow-up is appreciated.) They feel welcomed when they can communicate with you via email.

In addition, being an employer of choice is a reputation you build in your industry that is a powerful tool in attracting top talent.

Recruit Using the Internet

The Internet, in addition to your own organization Web site, is in its infancy in terms of its usefulness to employers, potential employees and society, in general. Learn how to use the Internet to find and attract great candidates. These are options you can currently consider.

  • Post your positions on professional association Web sites. This includes local chapter Web sites or professional associations related to the job. (This is an excellent method for finding local talent.)


  • Post open positions on Web sites that private vendors or your state and/or local government provide. In Michigan, positions can be posted at no cost on various websites including JobOpenings.net - Michigan, MLive.com - Everything Michigan and Michigan Workforce Development. (Search for your local job sites at America's Job Bank, About's Job Searching site and at Alison Doyle's Job Searching site for your state Workforce Development organization through your state department of labor. You'll find multiple options for both posting positions and searching for jobs.)


  • Post your classified ad on newspaper-related Web sites. Most newspapers have an affiliated Web site where you can post ads. These ads are either included in the price of a classsifed print ad or you can pay separately for online posting only. Make sure your recruitment ads "sell" the vision and the advantages of your organization. Effective ads portray your company as an exciting and rewarding place to work. Effective job postings make people want to apply to your firm.


  • Pay to post on some commercial Web sites.

Use Headhunters and Recruiters

Sometimes, it is worth your time to use headhunters, recruiters, and employment placement firms. The best firms have done much of this homework and candidate pool development for you. Expect to pay 20-35 percent of the cost of the new recruit's annual salary. But, for some positions, and in some industries, the cost in your department's time and the time invested in a possible failed search, are worth it.

Additionally, recruiters have an already-developed pool of candidates. They provide a second pair of experienced eyes to help you with your search. Some of them are very good. I met with a recruiter recently and offered him a sales job in a client organization on the spot. Believe me, he was that good - I can definitely see him finding great candidates for employers.

When you work in an HR role, calls from potential recruiters come several times a week. I ask for references and check them. I also talk with non-competing firms to get referrals of recruiters with whom they've been pleased. You can also research recruiters at the Recruiter's Online Network.

Want more ideas for recruiting great candidates? Read on ...

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