Quality over quantity: the future of recruitment

There is no denying that talent attraction will look very different in our post-Covid world. In the space of a few months, the recruitment industry has gone from a decade of being a candidate’s market where jobs were plentiful but talent was sparse to a market with a heavily expanded candidate pool, high unemployment, but very few jobs in which to place those candidates. You just have to look at the applications and job posting figures from WaveTrackR and it is clear how damaging Covid-19 has been to the jobs market – the latest data shows applications have increased by an incredible 112% compared to the March-June average and, although jobs have increased since the dark days of lockdown, they are still very low in comparison. 

It is undeniably tough out there for jobseekers but recruiters are feeling it too. They might now have a greater pool from which to find talent but, with far fewer jobs available, they are fighting for every job. Add to that an influx of applications to screen and candidates to manage effectively, often whilst still running a skeleton team, and a recruiter’s job is far from easy right now. This will signal a significant shift to quality over quantity in recruitment, from the number of job boards used, to the strategies job boards themselves employ, to the way recruiters effectively manage candidates to find top talent.

Slimmed down job boards

With many agencies operating on reduced budgets thanks to the financial impact of Covid-19, they will be looking to limit the number of job board contracts they book for the coming year. Rather than posting to multiple job boards and hoping for the best, this will be a time for targeted posting. Knowing which job boards are likely to garner better results for the sectors you cover will be of immense help. A multiposter with data-powered recommendations such as WaveTrackR can advise which boards will give you the best ROI, as can a consultant with experience in recruitment media with access to data. Review your tech, talk to the right people and invest wisely. 

Shift in job board strategy

We believe we’ll see job boards transitioning from a quantity to quality mentality when it comes to what is shown to candidates. Dave Jenkins, Wave CEO, predicts a shift from job boards “in terms of the way they’re putting jobs in front of candidates to make sure you’re getting a better quality result.” With the issue of a lack of talent having dissipated for now, job boards are more likely to find the perfect candidate in a steadily expanding pool. Thus, rather than displaying every job that has the slightest relevance to a candidate’s search, results will be more targeted.

Candidate management to help find top talent

When jobs are few and applications many you need a system to help you to find the right person for the job. Connecting talent with opportunity has never been more important as we get the economy moving again and are forced to work harder and smarter to secure each job. Time and resources have always been one of the biggest challenges for recruiters working in a crowded market but now, with many agencies still working with skeleton staff and applications soaring, solutions need to be found to manage candidates. What you don’t want is for top talent to slip through the cracks or to present the client with a long list of unsuitable candidates. Remember, quality over quantity – the one thing we do have now is a large pool of talent to work with and you want to be the one to find the gems, not your competitors. So, you’ll need a great candidate management system to help screen and track applications, manage candidates and provide a positive candidate experience. Communication is key so a traffic light system with automatic email responses to inform candidates if they haven’t been successful is incredibly helpful. Be the agency that cares about their candidates as well as their clients and not one of the many berated on LinkedIn for their callousness.     

While things remain undoubtedly tough, the positive outcome for recruiters (in the short term at any rate) is that there is an abundance of talent out there, all actively seeking positions. Manage it well and you can present your clients with quality candidates who will often be available to start immediately. If you make ‘quality over quantity’ your mantra in all areas of your recruitment strategy, from job boards to job postings, to candidate shortlists, you have the potential not just to ride out the storm but to thrive. As Dave Jenkins affirms; “There is real potential to grow but we have to focus on quality – quality experiences, quality adverts, quality data, quality research.” 

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