Getting recruitment right

Dawn Matthews, Senior HR & Recruitment Consultant, outlines considerations for successful recruitment.

Recruitment! One word, three syllables. Who would have thought this single word could incite so many emotions? Depending on how you look at it, this word could fill you with excitement, fear, happiness, irritation, enthusiasm, exasperation – the list is endless. Somebody has left your organisation, or due to growth you need to recruit new staff – what is your initial reaction?

Excitement: because you have an opportunity to choose who’s going to join your team, fresh ideas, innovation? Frustration: because you have to go through a rigorous process to find a suitable candidate to fill a vacancy, and your day job doesn’t stop? Perhaps you feel a combination of emotions. Happy: because the organisation is growing, or your team member has secured a promotion. Sad: because that’s another task to add to your list, and a valued member of your team is leaving.

No matter how recruitment makes you feel, it is an inevitable process in every organisation, regardless of size, location, culture or industry. Ultimately you want to employ someone who has relevant skills and experience, is personable and fits in with your organisation’s culture.

Here are some considerations for your recruitment process:

1.Locating candidates

Where do you look for candidates? Online media such as LinkedIn, Twitter, job sites or your organisation’s website? Traditional methods such as a half-page advert in a national newspaper, with an editorial giving some insight into your organisation’s aims and ethos? A print advert in the relevant trade journal? There are a range of choices, all of which can be suitable depending on the
role – one size does not fit all. If you are recruiting to an executive-level post, you may wish to commission a consultancy to manage the process with you. This includes designing an advertising strategy, recruitment pack, targeted headhunting, interviews and assessment centre. This means you’ll receive expert support and advice, as well as the opportunity to recruit to the role first time, especially as a suitable consultancy should be able to access candidates who are not necessarily active in the jobs market.

2.The ‘new’ world of work

Organisations are constantly seeking ways to work intelligently and more efficiently. This can include automating tasks, delivering services with fewer people and less financial resource, which in turn means shaping roles to meet business demands. Restructures can result in tasks being streamlined, organisational models becoming flatter, some posts being made redundant, and office space potentially decreasing – but there remains a need for recruitment.

Creativity needs to be applied when embarking on a recruitment process.

3.Candidates’ needs

The reality is that people like flexibility.  The majority would like to have a work-life balance and do not necessarily want to be stuck in a building from 9am-5pm every weekday. Your staff are
your biggest asset, so making roles appealing is important, both in terms of successful recruitment and retention. Therefore, it is worth asking the following questions before starting a recruitment campaign:

• Why would somebody choose to apply for a role at your organisation?
• What makes being an employee with you better than being an employee elsewhere?
• What do you want this person to do?
• What skills and experience are necessary?
• How are you going to reward their efforts?

The answers to these questions will help shape the advert and the recruitment pack.

Forward thinking organisations focus on measuring outcomes rather than attendance. So, where the role allows, ensure flexibility is a feature, for example by offering the chance to work remotely or flexible working hours. These benefits are not only enticing to millennials but older candidates too.

A happy workforce is a strong workforce, with increased retention and reduced staff turnover. If you get recruitment right from the outset, you’ll save a lot of time and money in the long run.

To discuss the issues raised in this article, contact

This article also appears in CT Brief, Issue 34

Getting recruitment right

Dawn Matthews, Senior HR & Recruitment Consultant, outlines considerations for successful recruitment.

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