The great thing about a candidate-driven market is that there’s no shortage of talent that are always looking for employers. But what becomes of exceptional candidates you simply have no place for right now but may have need for in the future? Losing track of them would be a waste of your time and the company’s resources. What you should do instead is build a talent community and maintain your relationship with these passive candidates over time.
Defining “Talent Community”
The concept of a talent community isn’t something new, but it may be referred to and utilized differently by people in the HR community. The bottom line is whether you call it a talent pipeline, talent network or talent CRM, all talent communities function the same way. The Undercover Recruiter defines it as a “mechanism where passive job seekers can learn more about a company until they are ready to apply.” It’s an excellent resource for recruiters for many reasons:
- It puts them into contact with applicants that are already interested in working for the organization
- Helps maintain communication with qualified candidates
- Allows them to place candidates in the most appropriate roles since they are not applying for a specific position
- Significantly shortens the recruitment process.
Overall, access to a vast network of talents will be a great investment for your company. To help you get started on building your very own talent community, we’ve gathered some useful tips below.
Rethink Your Role as Recruiter
If you are to create a sustainable network of talent, your recruiting team must have the right mindset. Keep in mind that the role of a recruiter is so much more than just posting job ads and scouring through hundreds of resumes. It should be about building deep relationships across a community by becoming a valued resource for talents. Providing expertise about branding, giving advice on crafting the ideal resume, and sharing tips on how to ace interviews are just a few good examples of this.
Keep in Touch with Applicants
The next step is to invite candidates to your talent network. Normally, this occurs through the regular job application process. While most people either get hired or turned away, some will inevitably fall in the middle of that spectrum. They may not be a good fit for the position they applied for but a perfect fit for your company culture, etc. Communicate the reason behind the rejection but express that you would like to invite them to your community for future consideration.
Engage Your Talent Community
When applicants join your talent community, you have to keep them engaged. The best way to foster a relationship with these people is through constant interaction and communication. Most companies do this by regularly sending out update emails with information about new job openings, job fairs or other relevant events, industry functions the organization is involved in and general company updates. You may also encourage them to follow your company on social media.
Reach Out to Your Community
Once you’ve gained a big enough following for your community, you can use it as a sourcing tool along with social media, careers page and job boards. It helps to keep a digital record of past applicants’ resumes for this purpose. Periodically review the resumes you have in hand, assess whether some candidates may be right for your current vacancies and reach out to them to encourage them to apply. It’s important, however, to make it clear that it is not a job offer and employment is not guaranteed.
Building your own talent pipeline may seem like a major undertaking, but inaction on your part will cost you more in the future. You could be losing high-quality passive candidates each day you don’t have a community!