How to Hire Like a Recruiter: 5 Strategies Recruiters Use To Find the Best Candidates

How to Hire Like a Recruiter: 5 Strategies Recruiters Use To Find the Best Candidates

Having recruited candidates in a range of places – internally, in a corporate, a start-up, and through an agency, as well as having been a candidate. I have learned a thing or five about where to find the best candidates. Great recruiters use all the tools at their disposal, due to having to search through 7 billion! You just need to be smart on where, and how you find the best three. Yes, I say find the best three as you never know which one will be the most interested – hiring is always a two-way street.

 Without further delay, the 5 strategies recruiters use to find the best candidates:

  1. First stop – Your network (which includes your mailbox)

The first step, which we often forget about, is using your own network. This includes your mailbox, as often people will send you their CVs, or someone they know, and these sit in your mailbox. Remember to always search through here first, as we often forget about that one email that was sent a few weeks ago.

The best way to reach out to your network is to put it out on social media in a post asking if anyone has a referral for talent for a specific skill set. Another way is to send a broadcast message out to a select group on your Whats app group.

The disadvantage of this, as at times, people recommend a friend or family member, who you may know, and at times mixing friendship and business can be tricky if things do not turn out well.

A list of where to look for your own network is at the bottom of this blog.

2. Old school – Advertise

I often say there are 3 types of candidates out there in the world.

  1. The first is the one that is looking and urgently, they have put their CV out there, they are on job boards (places where jobs are advertised), probably already in your inbox and you know they are looking.
  2. The second is the one that does not want the world to know that they are looking, but secretly they are searching job boards and will apply directly (and only directly).
  3. The third is passive talent, they are happy in their jobs but if something came along and enticed them, they may be interested.

Some recruiters, in the recruitment world, will not advertise anymore, but here they miss out on those that are secretly looking. Ensure you do not miss out on this group of candidates.

Though the one disadvantage to advertising, is you will receive applications that are not applicable, but you will find some gemstones!

Where to advertise you ask? See at the bottom of this blog for a list of places (some free) where you can advertise jobs.

3. Another old school strategy – Job Portals

Some recruiters have moved away from Job Portals (places where candidates can register and upload their CV), but we still find that working with talent that is interested in a new job is a whole lot easier than working with talent that needs to be enticed. Our vision is to make a dent in unemployment, and for this, we use the strategy of working with people who are keen to move or urgently need a job. Job Portals give the ability for employers or recruiters to search their base for talent that is currently available and interested.

We have a list below of the Job Portals available (some charge an annual subscription so check this first).

4. Another old school strategy – Head Hunting

Headhunting (where you physically hunt in a competitor space) has been used for centuries. Recruiters will contact staff at a competitor and find out who is interested in moving. This is not the same as ‘searching LinkedIn’ – LinkedIn has helped to get in touch with these but often headhunting is done in other ways. Headhunting you need to do some investigation in finding which staff are good, who is looking to move, and how to entice them away from the competitor. It is a difficult and often questionable strategy, but if done ethically (ensure no restraints in place) it can be done well. This is often where great recruitment agencies can assist.

We list below a selection of Agencies you can contact (they charge on a placement basis usually on a % of annual salary).

5. Search

This strategy is quite new in the world of recruitment but is growing with the likes of recruitment software. But you can do this manually by using Boolean searches in Google (or any other browser). This strategy will allow you to find passive talent (the talent that isn’t actively looking but could be interested). It is the more difficult strategy and takes a bit more time as you need to work a bit on enticing people to be interested in your job, but it can be very fruitful – especially with jobs where skills are in short supply.

Example of a Boolean search string (copy this into Google when searching for a C# developer in Cape Town): (“Cape Town” OR “Western Cape”) AND (C#) AND (developer OR programmer OR engineer)

We hope you find the 5 strategies recruiters use useful in your next search for the best candidates. As listed in the blog please find the websites below.