Blog Candidate Quality What Does The Current Online Recruitment Landscape Look Like?

This may be fairly basic knowledge for some people operating within the online recruitment space, but it is essential for anyone looking to master their online recruiting strategy to understand who the operators are, the tools available and what the primary online recruiting channels are.


The Operators

There are many recruiters operating within the recruitment landscape and they fall into 2 main categories. These include the following:


The corporate client: This will normally include dedicated in house recruitment functions, HR with recruiting responsibilities, business owners and hiring managers.


3rd Party specialist recruitment service providers: This includes 4 primary types of agency recruiters (Fixed fee, contingency, contract, retained). There are also recruitment advertising agencies, various online service providers, sourcing specialists and social media recruiting specialists.


It is important to understand which party or what tool is best equipped to deliver against your recruiting objectives as well as having an appreciation of who else is competing for the talent you are looking to attract. (Why not run a search for your chosen job title, across a couple of job advertising channels to do this?


Different recruiting channels can be utilised simultaneously to maximise exposure and to ensure a rapid turnaround or a tiered strategy can be deployed starting with the lowest cost options.


The Tools

Understanding what tools are available to you and how they work is critical. It is the tools that make online recruiting so effective. Without the right tools in place, you will increase the administrative costs and reduce the overall effectiveness of what you are trying to achieve.


Online recruiting tools can be segmented into 5 main categories

   1. Multi job posting services

   2. Applicant tracking (ATS) and campaign management service

   3. Candidate screening and assessment

  4. Candidate profiling

  5. Applicant ID and Background referencing


There are many multi-functional recruitment tools out there that cover all the above features, but it is important to select the best tools for you for each function, as a pre-packaged toolkit is unlikely to satisfy every element with a best of breed solution. If you are looking for a holistic solution, then an ATS or a Campaign Management system may be the best solution. However, it is important to explore the pros and cons of working with such a system as they can be counter-productive to your over-all recruiting objectives.


Technology should be considered to assist with the recruiting process, to automate mechanical tasks, but should not replace human engagement entirely. In a candidate-driven market, it is important that a nurturing approach is taken in order to attract and then maintain the interest of the best applicants. However, it is very difficult to do that without engaging with people directly.


Multiposting can be achieved through tools such as Broadbean, where relationships with individual advertising channels will need to be managed by yourself. To get the best value for your advertising you may wish to consider buying an advertising bundle deal from a multi-posting service provider.


Campaign management tools can be delivered via a software based solution or via the cloud. It is important to remember that a software solution will need to be aligned with a careers page on your website and is likely to incur some significant up front and maintenance costs.


Screening and assessment tools are an important part of the online strategy, as they can greatly assist in identifying the strongest applicants based upon skills and experience and for filtering out unsuitable applicants.


Likewise, profiling tools can help you to identify cultural and behavioural alignment. By choosing not to utilise these tools, you dramatically increase the risk of making a bad hiring decision.


Background and reference checking form the final phase of due diligence before moving to offer and can be easily done online, with results stored safely and easily accessible.


Advertising Channels

Selecting the right channels to post your job to is one of the most essential pieces of the recruiting jigsaw, especially where finding the most cost effective solution is a primary objective.


Let’s be blunt, if the right quality of candidates are not pulled into the prospect list, then it doesn’t really matter what tools or process you apply beyond this talent attraction phase, so getting this right is a major priority.


The primary advertising channel options available to the recruiter are as follows:


   •  Job Boards (National, niche and local media)

   •  Aggregators

   •  Social Media

   •  Industry Publications

   •  Referral schemes

   •  Pay Per Click (PPC) also referred to as sponsored advertising

   •  Open web and Jobs By Email

   •  Career site

   •  3rd party specialist recruitment service providers


In order to maximise your chances of attracting the best talent to apply for your vacancies, it is important to consider a multi-channel approach.


Another massively important factor to consider when advertising vacancies online is how the candidates search for jobs. Around 65% of all applicants will start their search in Google using their preferred job title and location as the search string. Depending on what Google provides in the results will determine where the majority of applicants start their search. Ensuring that your job advert appears within the first 2 or 3 results that Google presence is critical if you want to maximise your direct hire strategy.


Finally, it is important to think of the recruitment life cycle in the 3 key stages.


Stage 1: Talent attraction

Stage 2: Campaign Management

Stage 3: Applicant screening and profiling

By assessing and understanding what online recruiting options best suit your needs for each stage in the process, you are more likely to make better decisions and achieve your objectives.


Smart Recruit Online offers an award-winning talent attraction software that can streamline and revolutionise your recruitment. To find out what we can to for your recruitment strategy, book a demo by clicking here.

Mark Stephens

April 14, 2015

Mark has worked in and researched the HR & Recruitment landscape for over 20 years. His key focuses are how recruitment technology, evidence-based processes, and human behavioural science can be used to optimise recruitment performance. He is a serial entrepreneur, previous winner of the prestigious Chambers of Commerce 'Innovation in Business' award, and founder of Smart Recruit Online Ltd, and Corporate Wellness & Mental Health UK Ltd (Corpwell).

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