How much of the sourcing, interview, and hiring process are you leaving to chance? Ironically, corporate production is a numbers game, but many times the recruiting process runs more on gut feel than a standardized process.
We believe effective recruitment strategies can — and should — be built on systematized processes that apply science to the art of recruiting. Let’s look at the five stages of the recruiting process and how your applicant tracking system could standardize and improve your efforts.
What Are The Five Stages of Recruiting?
Management Study HQ defines the five stages of recruiting as:
- Strategy development
The recruiting funnel is not unlike a sales funnel, with candidates dropping in via our sourcing efforts, and then moving through the funnel to an offer or a decline.
The recruiter runs into trouble when the recruiting funnel runs dry. Whether the recruiter didn’t spend enough time resume harvesting, or inadequately screened applicants before they reached the hiring manager, the result is usually a slower time to hire.
Technology can help recruiters at every stage of this process, creating a strong, consistent recruiting pipeline that fills roles faster and helps talent teams work smarter.
Step One – Planning
In any company, recruiting planning should translate vacant jobs into a target list of activities to reach qualified candidates. This is where recruiter activity will yield a final pool of candidates, so companies must determine how much activity will ultimately yield enough qualified job candidates to fill all the openings.
Today’s line of next-generation applicant tracking systems can establish a customized dashboard that shows, at a glance, the activities that will lead to your next new hire. Simple to-do lists keep recruiters on track with daily tasks. Smart automation can eliminate busywork, such as manual scheduling, emails, and even offer letters. The technology should do the work so the user can focus on improving their bond and rapport with a hard-to-land candidate instead of trying to write an email.
Managers can see the recruiting funnel in real time, which allows them to quickly course-correct a recruiter whose activity isn’t high enough to yield a fast return.
Step Two – Strategy Development
Historically low unemployment necessitates new approaches toward sourcing candidates. Developing strategy around how recruiters will attract candidates, how technology will be used, the job requirements, and the sequencing activities of the recruitment process are important to a streamlined, consistent process. Recruiters should understand whether the firm’s strategy is to save on salaries by hiring less-skilled employees and training them versus paying more for candidate experience.
Step Three – Searching
After the firm has established the what and how of their recruiting method, the search process can begin. Most job searches begin with a job posting to attract candidates. But this first step in the search process must be conducted carefully. It’s relatively easy to run afoul of compliance rules like the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP). There is also the Internet Applicant Ruling, which requires employers to be clear about each step in their hiring process.
For employers to manage risk around compliance rules that continue to evolve, they should consider applicant tracking technology to track all steps of the hiring process. Modern systems do more than just tracking applications as they come in: They assist in documenting and standardizing the interview questions, when recruiter to applicant contact occurred, and what happened. These platforms can also automatically post to job boards with fully compliant language to attract a diverse field of candidates quickly.
Step Four – Screening
Screening candidate resumes and conducting interviews does not have to be a subjective process. Candidates can be screened by a pre-set criterion of job skills and technology expertise. The recruiter must be careful to show no unconscious bias toward candidates or run the risk of an EEOC violation. The job description is very helpful during this process, to help ensure that candidates are selected with the right mix of skills.
Technology can become a crucial asset during this process. Questions are standardized, responses documented, and candidate ratings can be consistent and clear in a technology-driven recruiting process. This will ensure fairness and an apples-to-apples approach to candidate screening that will lessen risk and increase the odds of finding the right fit for the job.
Step Five – Evaluation
Benchmarking the activities and cost of your recruiting effort against the success of the hiring initiative is crucial to process standardization. There are considerable costs accrued in the hunt for talent. They include:
- Recruiting salaries
- Administrative time spent on job descriptions, advertisements, and interviews
- Cost of advertising
- Cost of outsourcing to a staffing agency
- The cost of having a job unfulfilled
To win the cost-versus-ROI game, companies must have consistent, trackable metrics that show the value of the recruiting effort.
Sophisticated applicant tracking systems offer extensive reporting on metrics such as:
- Return on advertising dollar spent versus the number of qualified applicants
- The volume of candidates screened to get one new hire
- Time to hire
- The volume of candidates at various stages in the recruiting lifecycle
- How many resumes does it take to get to one phone screen?
- How many resumes are harvested by the job?
All of these metrics should intuitively drag-and-drop in most applicant tracking systems, making reporting easier for management teams.
TAM Can Systematize Your Recruiting Efforts
Systematizing the five steps of the recruiting process can even out subpar performance from your weakest recruiters. It can drive productivity while keeping your organization compliant with local, state, and federal compliance rules. Technology can be the driver of a thorough, robust recruiting process that consistently hits recruiting targets even in markets with historic unemployment numbers. ATS platforms can ensure compliance and lessen your risk.
The Applicant Manager (TAM) works with companies to standardize their recruiting effort. The rewards include better reporting, more task consistency between recruiters, streamlined processes, and faster time to hire. Effective recruitment processes start with TAM. Contact our team today to request a demo.