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Quality, not Quantity: Recruitment Tactics in a Digital World

11 Sep 2014
Sally Rae

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Recruiters typically want to go the extra mile, for their candidates, for their clients, and of course for their own personal reputation. Sometimes digital innovations present themselves as an immediate way of doing this, when in fact, they can be a hindrance later on. Here are my key thoughts on using social media and digital recruitment tactics to make sure you continue to forge ahead, rather than being set back in your industry.


1. Don’t leave it to chance

In some aspects, recruitment is a matter of probability, but the amount of email you send out will not necessarily correlate to the amount of perfect candidates you secure. Mass emailing, however tempting, should in my opinion be avoided when it comes to finding candidates for a specific role. It may generate a quick win and value for money, but the act of sourcing a candidate continues to need a finely tuned method, rather than simply getting the word out to as many as possible and hoping for the best. It is particularly easy to be drawn into this when you are with a company that has a culture of KPIs - Eden Scott does not adhere to this, because instead we pride ourselves on a bespoke, quality service for each of our clients and candidates. That means thoughtful contact, insightful online tool use and faith in traditional methods of recruitment just as much as digital tools.


2. The old rules still apply

Typically, your best candidates aren’t looking at the job boards. They're passive, working hard in current roles, and your client is relying on you to find your way to a connection with them. Of course, tools such as LinkedIn make this easier, but they are only there to complement your existing talent and reputation. You should be able to quickly recognise talent, see through what someone says on their profiles and what the truth is, and ultimately be a recruiter of quality that is clear when you try to make contact with a passive candidate. 


3. Development takes time

All recruiters want to get ahead, but the pressure can be particularly keenly felt upon first starting out. This is where I believe it might be most tempting to rely heavily on a quantity tactic, rather than quality. Companies should ensure that their graduate recruiters and those who have just joined from another industry are given rigorous training alongside an experienced recruiter for a significant length of time that can be changed depending on how the training is going or the particular industry difficulty. For example, as a recruiter for the hospitality industry I'm very much aware of the importance of long-term relationships with members of the industry, due to the fact that many people stay in the industry throughout their careers. Because of this, it takes time to build the right trust and understanding, and so employers should themselves be understanding of this when it comes to their new recruits meeting targets or winning fees.


I believe the technologies that recruiters have at their fingertips today are a great development in the industry. The sheer speed at which we can source candidates, get in touch with clients and build our awareness of our industry is unprecedented. It is important to remember not to forget about the core skills and talents that set great recruiters apart, however, and to use these tools as compliments rather than replacements.


If you have any thoughts on tactics recruiters should employ in the digital world, please do leave them in the comments below.


Sally Rae
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