5 Creative Ways to Source Top-Notch Candidates

3 min read
Nov 16, 2015

iStock_000008308454_Small-2When you’re looking for qualified candidates, where do you look? How much emphasis do you put on employee referrals, job boards, and social media?

Results from LinkedIn’s 2015 Talent Trends Report suggest that if you’re not at least taking advantage of these three sources, you could be missing out on active and passive candidates around the country.

Although the study found that more job seekers are active (30%) this year than last (25%), the most successful HR professionals need to find creative ways to engage both active and passive job seekers in the places where they are looking for new challenges.

Here are five creative ways to connect with active and passive job seekers via the channels LinkedIn found they’re using most:


1. Start a referral program or make the program you have more attractive

Even with social media and other online job tools, 65% of job seekers in LinkedIn’s study still rely on old-fashioned word of mouth to find quality opportunities.

Many companies offer financial rewards to employees who refer a candidate that is eventually hired. Take your program one step further to encourage more participation and better-quality referrals.

Create a tiered system that starts by rewarding all employees who refer quality candidates with a small reward. Then, if an employee’s referral is hired, reward them with a second-tier reward like financial compensation, a paid day off, sports tickets, and more like below:

Building an attractive referral program that rewards all employees for high-quality candidates is an integral part of creating and maintaining a talent pipeline.

2. Encourage your employees to write about their experiences

If job seekers are already looking to their peers for recommendations, why not make it easier for them to find out what makes your organization so great?

Consider starting an employee blogging and/or social media program that puts the people who work for you front and center. Then highlight it on your company’s About or Careers page.

Encourage your employees to share positive stories about everyday experiences, company social initiatives, the organizational culture, and anything else that may attract active or passive candidates. The key here is to put employees in charge of the program so they take pride in what they are sharing.

3. Make your job listings more exciting

62% of job seekers use online job boards to look for new job opportunities. That means your job listings may be the first experience a job seeker has with your brand. Will they be impressed? Or will they feel like your company is the same as all the rest?

In today’s competitive market, your listings need to be more compelling to attract today’s job seekers -- especially the passive ones.

Don’t just post a monotonous list of skills and requirements. Instead, talk to people who’ve been in the role about a typical day in the life, and find ways to incorporate their insights about what a successful hire looks like, what a person will learn on the job, and how the role impacts the organization’s success.

Compelling job listings help highlight why your position is a more attractive alternative for passive candidates and the best opportunity for active candidates.

4. Integrate images and video into your social strategy

For 61% of job seekers, social media is an essential part of their job search strategy. Are you doing enough to attract social job seekers?

Incorporating high-quality images and video into your social recruiting efforts can make a big impact. Remember, you want to do more than just tell job seekers what positions you’re hiring; you want to encourage them to engage with your brand.

One of the best ways to do this is to share images and video that highlight your company’s culture. By showing job seekers why your organization is a great place to work, you encourage them to keep coming back to look for opportunities, which makes your job even easier.


5. Use data to determine where your best hires are coming from

No matter what methods you decide to employ, it’s important to monitor where your organization is getting its best-quality candidates. Keep track of what sources your candidates are coming from and use data analytics software to determine the strength of each source.

If your top-quality candidates are coming from referrals, put more resources into beefing up your referral program. If they’re coming from online job boards, focus on that source first and divide the rest of your resources accordingly.

Once you’ve allocated resources, constantly reevaluate your sources to find the trends that can make an impact on your talent acquisition strategy.

What recruitment strategies do you use to attract active and passive candidates? Do you focus on one source more than others? How do you determine which source works best?



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