Attracting talented recruits is not a matter of chance. In today’s competitive job market, a killer recruitment strategy is a must. A lone job advertisement will no longer do the trick especially with the stiff competition for talent.
In 2019, 69% of American employers reported difficulties in finding qualified candidates to fill open positions.
Recruiters also deal with the fact that most top-tier employees are already gainfully employed. The challenge is not only finding these unicorns but persuading them to explore your current job opening. Every company’s recruiting strategy is different and is often affected by company culture, industry, location, and the recruiters themselves. So, how do you win the best candidates in a tight talent market?
By thinking outside of the box and meeting candidates where they are most active. Here are some unique and creative ideas to add to your toolkit.
1. Arrange a group interview
A group interaction is an excellent way to assess a job candidate’s personality, communication skills, and knowledge. It helps you shortlist a big pool of applicants saving you time and effort in doing individual interviews.
A well-structured group interview conducted by a skilled panel of interviewers is the perfect setting to identify the best of the best among your candidates. Some common use cases for group interviews include.
- Needing to fill multiple entry-level positions
- Having a large talent pool with no previous work experience
- Need to hire someone asap
- Filling roles where stress management, communication, and teamwork are key
2. Attend events
Ditch the job fair and look for talents in community events. If you’re looking for a programmer, for instance, try attending a tech event in your area.
You can also use social networking websites like Meetup to keep you posted on local events and happenings. To engage new talent, get involved in your local community groups by joining the conversation. Even though we can’t meet in person due to the pandemic, you’ll often find plenty to talk about in the discussions section of Meetup. Many skill-oriented groups are even open to posting job listings, and will often post their requirements in the about us section. For example, on this Meetup site, look at the “What we’re about” section and scroll down to the “Share a Job with our Community” paragraph.
3. Consider Ai tools
A.I. or artificial intelligence is a promising recruitment tool that can help you select the strongest candidate without the hassle of going through thousands of resumes.
There are different AI recruiting tools that serve diverse purposes such as screening a candidate’s social media accounts, providing job application tests, scheduling interviews, answering candidate questions, and articulating job descriptions, among others. AI does the legwork for you, giving you more time to focus on preparing interviews and closing job offers.
Companies like Airbnb, Facebook, LinkedIn, Lyft, and Upwork use at least one AI tool in their recruitment and hiring process. Big names in the automotive industry such as Fiat Chrysler and Tesla also swear by AI tools like Mya, a recruitment chatbot developed by FirstJob. These companies cite increased productivity and reduced costs as some of the advantages of automating a portion of their recruitment process.
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4. Be creative with advertisements
Catch people’s attention with a wacky commercial, a humorous podcast, or an eccentric billboard like Google’s famous billboard puzzle. You can also produce a short YouTube video, advertise on social media, and buy relevant keywords on Google AdWords.
Remember to keep your ads fun, catchy, and memorable. Your goal here is to whet the curiosity of potential employees. Heightened public interest is also a bonus!
5. Host an open house
An open house is a win-win for both the recruiter and the candidate. For the latter, it’s an opportunity to get a feel of the company and its culture. Meanwhile, for the recruiter, it’s a fantastic way to narrow down your selection and to see who’s really going to take that important first step to pursuing their application. Plus, it would be great to see how your applicants interact in a group setting.
It’s important to remind candidates to bring their resume and be ready for a formal job interview in all your promotional materials. There’s nothing worse than a candidate telling you they had no idea they would be interviewing on the spot. During the event, walk them through your hiring process and include how you will follow up with them if they advance to the second stage.
6. Set up employee referrals
Your current employees are the most qualified to recommend a promising job candidate. They know your company better than anyone else, so they have a good sense of who’s going to be a perfect fit for both the job and the organization. Odds are they also have excellent connections in the industry.
Get your employees involved in the job search and incentivize the process to keep it fun. You can give away cash incentives, gadgets, vacation leaves, or a premium parking spot for every successful referral.
7. Organize a competition
In 2010, advertising giant, Ogilvy & Mather, launched a viral contest dubbed as “The World’s Greatest Salesman.” The challenge is to sell a brick to win a paid fellowship with the agency and $20,000 grand prize. Plus some pretty cool bragging rights.
It was an incredible way to capture the interest of potential employees, and the competition itself was a means to assess the candidates’ skills.
8. Use social networking sites
Social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ are fast and simple tools that can connect you to your next dream hire. Each platform offers a unique feature that gives you access to an expansive network of profiles.
LinkedIn, for example, has filters that allow you to find potential candidates according to their location, work experience, and skillset. You can also use these platforms to advertise your job opening and increase engagement.
9. Participate in online forums
Scour online communities like Reddit and Quora, and search for discussion threads relevant to your job posting. Chances are there are thought leaders in these forums who have the skills and qualifications you’re looking for.
Sure, everyone and their dog is on Facebook and Linkedin these days. But that doesn’t mean you should overlook niche networks and forums. For example, developers are often sharing knowledge on GitHub and StackOverflow. Marketers are sharing ideas and use cases on Moz and Warrior Forum. And your next great thought leader may just have provided a thought-provoking answer in a subreddit.
10. Go all out with a guerrilla campaign
Go the extra mile and launch an off the wall campaign that will not only attract top talents but also generate significant social buzz for your company.
Take inspiration from the famous “Who Cares?” campaign. To attract young people to fill 1,430 open positions in the military, the Swedish Armed Forces launched a guerilla campaign featuring a cryptic box placed in central Stockholm. A person sat inside the large box, and he/she could only leave if somebody volunteered to take his/her place. The campaign was a huge success both online and offline, as it generated over 200,000 website visits and 9,930 applications—more than double of the target 4,300 applications.
The competition for top talents is fierce. With more open positions than qualified candidates to fill them, recruiters must think out of the box to capture the interest and win the A-players in the field.
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