Business Irish

Thursday 22 February 2018

Key ways to make a recruitment strategy work for your company

A recruitment strategy helps you avoid poor hiring decisions. Deposit photos.
A recruitment strategy helps you avoid poor hiring decisions. Deposit photos.

James Milligan

Without a correct recruitment strategy, you could be setting your firm up for poor hiring decisions and long-term staff inefficiency.

The key is a well informed and senior management-led human resources division. While it's easy to focus exclusively on developing new products and winning clients, the talent needed to make these happen is arguably the most important aspect of your business. You must see HR as a key pillar of your organisation, with direct input into the highest levels of planning.

Without an informed HR and recruitment team, your company risks making costly mistakes, including the hiring of poor-quality candidates, or candidates that do not share your company's ethos and goals.

Leveraging current staff:

The best recruits often come from within the company. According to our latest research, 'The State of Resourcing in Ireland', more than 80pc of Irish companies consider themselves "good" or "very good" at enabling their employees to progress within their organisation and recommend new recruits through an internal referral scheme. A well-developed internal recruitment process, and a culture that actively encourages personal development and upskilling, is vital to retain existing talent and hone skills.

Identifying your value proposition

It is crucial that a HR team both understands and is able to communicate its value proposition. An employer's value proposition explains what benefit your organisation can provide for a candidate and how this is unique to your company.

In other words, "what's in it for me?" for the potential hire.

This can include the type of work, salary and bonuses on offer, to other non-monetary benefits including opportunities for progression, travel or career breaks, educational grants and study leave, and policies such as flexitime or working from home.

By having a comprehensive understanding of your value proposition, you will be better equipped to attract a calibre of candidate consistent with your culture and long-term goals.

Creating a diverse workforce

Diversity programmes are high on the list of priorities for Irish companies, according to 'The State of Resourcing' report. Despite this, only 27pc of Irish organisations consider themselves good at recruiting a diverse workforce that reflects the changing nature of society.

Diversity leads to a stronger, more varied pool of skills and talents, an enriched working environment and a greater resonance with customers.

However, for a diversity strategy to work, senior management must be prepared to pay more than just lip-service.

Senior management must actively support HR in building recruitment programmes and assist them in the recruitment process. That means taking into account religious and cultural sensitivities, and building a culture that embraces diversity.

Talent acquisition is a two-way street. If your company isn't well-known, or doesn't have the same cachet as Google or Facebook, you'll need to fight harder to gain candidates' attention.

Building an attractive employer brand online and offline

Social media is vital for developing your employer brand online. When looking for new talent, your HR team needs to make use of LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Glassdoor and other social networks. Embrace these and tell a compelling story about your brand, its culture and why candidates would want to work for you. This also presents an opportunity to showcase the company's employee diversity and clear career progression.

However, social media enables a conversation between a brand and its audience. If people have had negative experiences with your employer brand, websites like Glassdoor will provide them with a perfect platform to tell you and everyone else about it.

For HR teams, recruiting in particular sectors, especially sectors that require STEM knowledge, skills shortages are an ongoing problem.

For some companies, reaching out to universities and other colleges to establish graduate programmes and work placements is an effective way of building long-term, lucrative relationships. Furthermore, for companies that demand a particular set of skills, like technology or law, these relationships are vital to maintaining a flow of talent.

By enabling your HR team to develop and implement an effective talent acquisition strategy, based on your company's long-term vision, your business stands to increase its position as an employer of choice.

James Milligan is a director with Hays Ireland. For more information on the Hays 'State of Resourcing in Ireland' Report, visit

Irish Independent

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