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Three Time-Tested Ways to Attract Top Talent

September 30, 2020

Finding the very best talent — people who are so highly skilled and productive that they could work nearly anywhere — is often a holy grail for management teams. 

What CEO doesn’t expect the Human Resources department to find and deliver people who are at the top of their respective fields?

Here are three steps HR professionals can take right now to live up to those expectations.

1. First, adopt the same mindset as your CEO.

Show me a culture of high-performers, and I’ll show you a culture of high expectations and accountability.

Put extra effort into defining what “top talent” means for every vacancy you’re charged with filling. Then hold yourself or your people accountable for finding candidates with those qualities. Make sure everyone involved in your recruiting process understands you will settle for nothing less.

Changing your mindset is critical to upgrading your recruiting processes.

2. Second, upgrade your recruiting processes.

Recruiting top talent takes longer than recruiting just anyone. It also takes a more granular approach. Here are some specific improvements to consider:

  • Put more resources into personal selling. Get your HR organization out of the office and involved into the field. Join professional organizations where top talent gathers. Commit to finding and recruiting candidates who aren’t necessarily looking for jobs.
  • Create an employee referral program. Offer current top performers an incentive to help you recruit more people like them.
  • Find and use specialty resources. Choose websites or social media groups that focus on a particular niche.

3. Third, create a high-quality candidate experience.

There’s nothing like a first impression. So once you’re fortunate enough to have a talented candidate interview with your company, be certain you’re putting your company’s best foot forward. An outstanding candidate experience includes:

  • A personal and gracious invitation to learn more about your company and the open position
  • An uncomplicated application process
  • Relevant, timely, and thoughtful communication throughout the recruiting process
  • Sensitivity to your candidate’s needs. Treat him or her like a customer, not an outsider. Don’t allow executives to keep candidates waiting for interviews.
  • Clear and specific descriptions of the role and your expectations
  • A hiring process that feels more like joining a team than a legal or bureaucratic endeavor

What else can you do?

Beyond these steps, make sure your company is doing what is necessary to achieve recognition as an employer of choice. Put sufficient resources into public relations and social media marketing to help brand your organization as a great place to work, and make sure your reputation and brand are positioning your company as a place where top talent will want to work.