From the Great Resignation to quiet quitting and candidate ghosting, there’s never a dull — or buzzword-free — day in the world of HR. The trends are endless. The headlines are catchy. The struggle is real.
Even the most resilient companies are facing extreme challenges in finding and keeping the right people for their team. With so much going on in the world and talent market, where should recruiters and hiring managers focus their efforts?
Unfortunately, the answer to that question is bound to change from day to day. So why not create a ready-for-anything recruitment plan that helps you change along with it?
In this guide, we’ll share simple steps for creating an agile recruitment plan that can adapt to whatever changes come next in your industry, talent pipeline, or you know…the world. For a flexible strategy that consistently delivers the best candidates, read on.👇🏾
5 steps for an agile recruitment plan:
- Clarify your recruitment goals
- Select your hiring tools
- Assemble an agile hiring team
- Strengthen your brand and offer
- Check in and revisit your plan
Recruitment plan: A ready-for-anything playbook for all your hiring needs
At its core, a recruitment plan is a blueprint for attracting and selecting candidates that also streamlines the hiring process into a series of clear and easy-to-follow steps.
And that’s not all. The right recruitment plan also helps you direct your resources and clarify your recruitment efforts to achieve greater return on investment (ROI) from your hiring efforts.
Because the truth is, recruiting candidates and filling open positions can be both time-consuming and costly — especially if you’re shooting from the hip with every open position.
Fortunately, a solid recruitment plan can get you where you need to be in terms of both the number and quality of candidates you’re attracting at any given time. And you don’t have to be an experienced HR professional to make it happen.
Here’s how to create a recruitment plan you can count on in just five straightforward steps.
Step 1. Clarify your recruitment goals
Creating a resilient recruitment plan is sorta like building a house.
Before you break out the power drill, you’ll want to make sure you get your plans in order, choose the right tools and assemble a strong team to carry out the work.
If you don’t already have a clear recruitment goal, this is definitely step one.
But let’s say you’re ahead of the game and have an existing goal in place. In a talent market this rocky, there’s never a bad time to revisit.
The beauty of having an ever-evolving recruitment plan is that you can track your results over time for clarity into the bigger picture of how your hiring process is maturing.
Here are some common objectives to consider:
- Increased quality of hire
- Decreased time to hire
- Better representation in candidate pool
- Higher ROI on recruitment marketing
- Lower new hire failure rates
- Reduced cost per hire
While you always want to have clear objectives and recruitment metrics to help measure your progress, your recruitment goal itself can — and arguably should — have a broader scope of impact.
For example, instead of ‘hire two new engineers by March 1’, your recruitment goal might be to:
Strengthen our employer brand to increase quality of hire.
In this case, you might choose not to measure time-to-hire and instead focus on the number of recruitment marketing activities, new hire failure rates and quality of hire metrics.
Whatever your approach, document your recruitment goal in a central location and include a clear breakdown of how and when (e.g., weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc.) it will be tracked and measured.
Step 2. Select your hiring tools
Next, list all the tools you think you’ll need to get the job done.
This includes your job description, job ad creative, and any existing email and candidate communication templates for the open role.
But beyond that, your hiring toolbox should also include automated apps and other cloud-based recruiting solutions that help you find better candidates in less time.
Depending on your specific goal, this could include any number of resources:
- Free and premium job boards
- Diversity job boards
- LinkedIn Jobs
- Employee referral portal
- Text messaging and email recruitment tools
- Interview scheduling software
- Customized interview guides (including the right questions for each role)
- Skills assessments
- Candidate scorecard
- Background check tools
- Offer letters and e-signature software
- Project management system to keep it all together
But, be warned. There are a lot of nuances when it comes to selecting tools that will actually contribute to ROI — rather than detract from it.
To get the most out of your investment, keep longevity at the forefront of your mind from day one. Look for platforms with plenty of customizable features and an open API for integrations with the other recruiting tools you already use and love.
Step 3. Assemble an agile hiring team
When a team of analysts at McKinsey recently drew insights from over four decades of data on business performance in times of uncertainty, they found that the most resilient businesses were also incredibly agile.
These companies embraced data-informed decision making for “good enough” outcomes that empowered teams to “test, learn, and adjust in the wake of complex business challenges.”
And recruitment is nothing if not a complex business challenge.
Come rain or shine, the right hiring team will help you get the candidates you need when you need them — while identifying and applying all key learnings along the way.
Here are some of the fundamental characteristics of a high-performing recruitment team.
Diverse skills and backgrounds
To assemble your dream hiring team, take a good look at your organization and decide who should be involved at each stage of the hiring plan beyond the hiring manager.
- Who are the big-picture thinkers that can help hold the brand vision?
- Are there any ‘process’ or ‘numbers’ brains on the team who can help you track your progress?
- Who knows the role better than anyone else?
- Are there any other key stakeholders or departments this role touches?
You’ll also want to work with a diverse hiring team to minimize any inherent bias that may creep into the process and ensure you’re choosing from a candidate pool that represents the total market of available talent.
Does every member of your hiring team know what values make up your employer brand? Are they comfortable communicating these values in an interview?
Do they understand each category within your candidate scorecard? Do they know which systems to use for each part of the hiring process? Who can they contact if something’s now working?
If this is your first time breaking the hiring process out of the one- or two-person silo, start by giving your existing hiring lead some dedicated time to document your current processes, including answers to all the top recruitment FAQs that may come through internally.
Because strong communication within the hiring team leads to strong recruitment results every time. 💪🏼
Respect for the candidate experience
Candidate experience should be at the top of your list no matter what your hiring process looks like, or who’s responsible for it.
The current talent market is undeniably candidate-led. As competition for skills heats up, employers will come under increasing pressure to stand out and offer a better experience than the company next door.
The good news is, small touches in your recruiting plan can make a big difference to your applicants and candidates.
Step 4. Strengthen your brand and offer
Once you’ve figured out how your new recruitment plan works, it’s time to reassess your candidate offer.
Recent data shows that 63% of workers quit because of low pay and 43% quit because of lackluster employee benefits. So when it comes to lowering your attrition rate and attracting top talent, it pays to rework that candidate offer.
Benefits and perks
Mental health, childcare and personal assistance are all part of the new flexible working prerogative. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box with your employee perks and benefits to build an attractive offer without overspending on things your employees didn’t even want in the first place.
Most new jobseekers in the market today will have experienced some level of instability. More than any ping pong table or meditation pod, they just want a little security in their new role. Don’t be afraid to share your growth plans, plus any data or recent wins that can help give them a real view into how the business is doing.
Audit your recruitment marketing message
Differentiating your employer brand will become even more crucial as candidates look beyond namepower to evaluate an organization’s full offer — including the culture and values of your team.
Take time to review your team values and audit your existing recruitment marketing channels to ensure that the right qualities are being communicated throughout.
You can also showcase your values and reach more candidates by using inclusive language in your job ads. Just be sure to always put your money where your mouth is by providing a high-quality experience for incoming candidates.
Step 5. Check in and revisit your recruitment plan
The key to true recruitment resilience is to remember that even the best-laid plans are subject to change.
From candidate experience questionnaires to recruiting data analysis, it’s important to schedule regular places in your recruitment plan to stop, evaluate, and make sure it’s working for everyone.
Whether you choose to do this weekly, monthly, quarterly or even annually is all going to depend on your unique recruitment budget, hiring volume and cadence. Here are a few of the areas to review.
Keep tabs on your numbers
Depending on your recruitment goal, you’ll want to track a selection of relevant recruitment metrics, such as time-to-fill and applicant numbers per role. With a bird’s eye view to the micro-steps that lead up to your biggest hiring goals and objectives, you’ll be better able to spot any crucial pinch-points.
Ask candidates for feedback
After all, there’s no one better to comment on your recruitment and selection process than someone who’s actually been through it. Send former candidates questionnaires to find out about their experience with your employer brand, even if they weren’t hired for the role.
Check in with your existing teams
Employers are often guilty of waiting until it’s too late before taking on suggestions from existing team members. Don’t let it happen to you.
From the frontline members of your hiring team to the rest of your workforce — existing employees will have a great view of the recruitment process, the competition amongst other employer brands, and the changes in what modern candidates really want.
Do yourself a favor and offer them opportunities to share their feedback whenever possible.
A resilient recruitment plan builds a resilient workforce
In the modern world of business, uncertainty is the name of the game.
But constantly rebounding from shifts in the market doesn’t have to be your default recruiting strategy. With a clear goal, an agile team, and strong culture of feedback and experimentation, you can develop a recruiting plan that helps you build a resilient workforce fit for the future (and future hires).
And when you’re ready to futureproof your recruitment process and give candidates the modern experience they deserve, Breezy is here to help. From automated emailing to team scorecards and interview guides, Breezy is the easy-to-use recruitment software modern hiring teams can’t live without. Try it yourself with a free 14-day trial!