It can take weeks of hard work and effort to hire someone to join your team, from creating job applications to in-person interviews and skill assessments, and even longer to train them up for the job once they’ve accepted the role. That’s why having a talent acquisition strategy in place is vital for optimizing recruitment and fulfilling your organization’s needs through skilled employees.
What is talent acquisition?
While talent acquisition and recruitment may seem, on the surface, to be the same thing, there are differences between the two. Recruitment is intended to fill a vacancy for a specific role. It’s a short-term strategy with an individual position in mind. But talent acquisition is not focused on vacancies. It’s a longer-term strategy that is used to attract highly qualified individuals to your business. For a business to be successful, it needs to retain top talent, irrespective of what vacancies become available.
Broaden your search criteria
It may be the case that you previously only considered applicants that had a certain number of years experience under their belts and already work in the industry. But in doing this, you could be placing unnecessary restrictions on your business. Business coach Dominic Monkhouse argues for the opposite: “consider broadening your search criteria as you may be missing some great candidates, particularly in more junior roles. Try to move towards recruiting for attitude and culture fit rather than fixed ideas of experience needed”. The result? You build a team of people who have the right outlook for your business and the drive to build their skills.
Build your brand
You need to present your business as a great place to work and carry your brand message throughout all that you do, so that you have control over the narrative of your business. There are various ways to do this, from video testimonials on your site to social content from current employees explaining what they love about working for the business. These types of content help to evoke an image of the company and help to shed a positive light on your brand, encouraging people to want to work for your business and to actively seek out roles with you.
Encourage employee referrals
Employee referrals are often an untapped resource for businesses, but they can help you bring in fantastic talent to the business with far less effort than recruiting from scratch. But in so many cases, businesses offer a measly incentive program to employees, yet pay extortionate fees to recruitment firms for the same role. Upping the incentive and encouraging people to tap into their personal networks for vacancies within the business can help enormously when it comes to talent acquisition and can save your business money in the long term.
Use visual media in your messaging
In today’s digital age, visuals matter. How you present an advert for a job makes all the difference in how well it will be received and the type of applicants you’ll have getting in touch. Why post a block of text to try and fill a vacancy when you could make a more personal connection through a video or even social channels such as TikTok? Young talent is looking to engage with companies that align with their values and experiences, and recruiting in a way that speaks to the type of audience you’re trying to attract can be highly effective. Think video job descriptions, bold presentations, infographics and even live video interviews to bring your brand to the forefront of your messaging and speak directly to your employee demographic.
Update your DE&I efforts
DE&I, otherwise known as Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, is vital for any successful talent acquisition strategy. Applicants want to know that their employer is dedicated and committed to diversity and inclusion, and to see that reflected in their recruitment efforts. According to Aubrey Blanche, Global Head of Diversity & Belonging at Atlassian, “80% of people say they care about D&I. But the flip side to more people caring is that when progress is frustratingly slow, more people take notice and get discouraged”. Your business needs to be taking active steps towards a more diverse workforce, whether that’s through eliminating biases when reviewing resumes, anonymizing applications before reviews, or having a more diverse interview panel in place for hiring.
Build your talent pool
Businesses can build a pipeline of qualified, eager candidates by partnering with local educational institutions, which builds a relationship between students and companies. It’s a method that works for so many industries, but has proven particularly beneficial for tech firms. In doing so, your business has the chance to cultivate conversations with potential applicants early on and attract them post-graduation, rather than waiting for people to apply. It’s an effective way to not only fill roles with enthusiastic and qualified individuals who will bring a fresh perspective to the business, but it also helps to enhance retention.
People make a business and they’re the drivers of a company’s success. This means that talent acquisition is one of the most important aspects of a business’ operations and something that needs to be prioritized. Recruitment professionals need to be able to not only find the right people but also retain them within the business, which is where these strategies can come in useful.
About the Author
Mike James is an independent writer based in the UK, Mike writes content for the B2B market. He covers a broad range of topics including technology, cybersecurity, HR, marketing, design, co-working, and business start-ups.