Sunday, December 03, 2006

Recruiting 24-7


In a competitive employment market, you have to be ready to jump on any opportunity to recruit qualified applicants. In this post I'm going to look at two methods of recruiting that help you take full advantage of ready job candidates.

Method 1: Surfing layoffs

Are you prepared to jump at the chance to recruit workers who get laid off?

One of the most common suggestions for organizations is to focus on passive candidates. These folks are demonstrating skills similar to what you need and verifying employment and conducting reference checks is much easier.

Individuals that have just been laid off (as long as it's not for performance reasons) are pseudo-passive: they've been demonstrating transferable skills and are likely highly motivated to find similar work elsewhere.

Case in point: recently a coal mine shut down near here and 600 miners lost their jobs. Within 24 hours other mines across the country started calling in, expressing interest in hiring those that had been laid off.

Will you be ready to do the same when these situations present themselves?

Method 2: Recruiting customers

This method of recruiting has gotten increasing emphasis during this holiday season, but like surfing layoffs it's a strategy that should be used year-round.

The idea here is, again, to identify individuals who have transferable skills. The best customer recruiting is done on the spot. Although these folks aren't always passive, you are getting a chance to see them in action, demonstrating job-related competencies (e.g., patience, curiosity, product knowledge) and not in the "this is my maximum performance" interview setting.

This isn't just for retailers. It's for any organization that has "customers"--people calling for information, people signing up for services, etc.

These techniques should supplement your primary recruiting technique--establishing a reputation as an employer of choice--but they can be valuable tools in your belt, particularly in crunch times.

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