What Is the Recruitment Process? Definition & Steps


What Is the Recruitment Process? Definition & Steps

A refined recruitment process can make or break your organisation. After all, companies compete fiercely to attract quality candidates. But, if your processes are lacking, you may be pushing great talent away rather than drawing them in. We explain how in this article. 

Key Facts

  • The recruitment process is a company’s means to find and select suitable candidates from the labour market.

  • There are several stages to recruitment that work as templates for a business to develop techniques that work for its operational needs.

  • A well-planned and streamlined recruitment process creates a positive candidate experience that can make prospects favour your brand even if they aren’t selected for the role. 

What Is the Recruitment Process?

The recruitment process is your company’s system for finding and selecting the most suitable candidates for open positions. Typically, the process starts with creating an accurate job description and lasts until a new hire is officially recruited. 

Types of Recruiting

Every company has its ideal recruitment process; what works for one might not work for another. As a result, there are several types of recruiting methods that you can use as a foundation to develop your process. 

  • Direct advertisement is when you advertise open positions through online job boards, career sites and social media to find many potential candidates at once. This essential recruitment method can give broad exposure to your employer brand but attracts unqualified people as well.

  • Recruitment agencies manage the recruitment process and candidate selection on your behalf, freeing up time within the company for more critical tasks. They’re a good option for filling difficult or complex positions when you don’t have the necessary HR resources. However, recruitment agency services can be fairly expensive, and you won’t have control over the recruiting process.

  • Internships can be seen as a ‘pre-hiring’ phase of sorts. While soon-to-be graduates earn college credit and experience, you get to know them as colleagues and if they’d fit your company culture. It’s a good way to identify talent early and get them to work for your company.  

  • Recruitment events, also known as job fairs, career expos and career fairs, are events companies hold to help them screen several potential candidates simultaneously. This recruitment method saves time and money while allowing applicants to learn more about your organisation and decide if they want to work with you.

  • Employee referral programmes allow your workforce to recommend family or friends for a vacant position within your organisation. It’s a cost-effective method of screening candidates that tends to bring in people who already understand how your company works.

  • Talent Pool Databases refer to the pool of candidates that weren’t hired for an open position but had impressive CVss nonetheless. Looking through retained candidates can save time in your future recruitment process.  

What Are the 7 Stages of the Recruitment Process?

Several general stages go into the recruitment and selection process. Use these stages as a good foundation for developing your ideal recruitment procedures. 

1. Identify Vacancies and Hiring Needs

Analyse the vacant role and understand the requirements of the position. It’s essential to have a firm grasp of the skills, knowledge and experience a candidate needs to excel in the role. Examining the proficiencies a particular team is missing is also a good way of determining the type of employee you should seek. 

2. Create a Job Description

Once you’ve determined the skills potential candidates need, you can accurately describe those requirements. A well-written job description helps screen applicants by giving prospects something to compare their credentials against and learn whether they’re qualified.

The next step is preparing to seek out prospective candidates, using various recruitment methods to identify top talent. Typically, companies use internal and external methods, including employee referrals, online job boards, career fairs and more.

4. Screen and Shortlist

Once you’ve collected a large enough pool of applicants, sort through them and pick out the candidates. This is often considered the hardest part of the recruitment process — it takes valuable time to sort through all those applications. Shortlisting the most qualified tends to get harder as you progress until you eventually have a shortlist of candidates you’d like to invite to interview.

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5. Interview and Test

The candidates you’ve shortlisted move on to the next stage of the recruitment process: interviews. Here, your team can perform more in-depth screening, asking questions about the information on their CV and administering skill tests to determine their suitability. Additionally, interviews are a good opportunity to give more details about the company and its value. 

6. Inform the Successful Candidate

In the final stage of the recruitment process, you give an offer to the candidate you think is the most suitable for the position. It’s important to have a second and third choice prepared because it’s not a guarantee that the most suitable candidate will accept the job.

7. Onboard and Team Introductions

The company begins onboarding once an applicant accepts the job offer and becomes an official employee. Typically, employees receive documents detailing company policies, benefits packages and other important information. Then, new hires are introduced to their team shortly after and given a rundown of their responsibilities before starting their first day on the job. 

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Tips for Effective Recruitment

Ready to bring in the best talent? Try these four tips.

  • Design a positive candidate experience. Ensuring that the recruitment process goes as smoothly as possible builds a positive view of the company in the candidate’s mind. Even if they’re not selected for the position, their favourable experience could lead them to encourage others to apply.

  • Have a strong offboarding process. A streamlined offboarding process ensures that departing employees have a positive opinion of the company and can drive them to encourage others to apply. This can help drive referrals and boomerang employees.

  • Allow flexible working arrangements. Flexibility in their working arrangements is becoming an increasingly important benefit to candidates. Promoting that your company supports a work-from-home model can attract more high-quality candidates.

  • Embrace diversity. A workplace composed of people from diverse backgrounds is another value many candidates seek from their employers. Embracing it can vastly increase the pool of people you can pull talent from. 

Frequently Asked Questions About the Recruitment Process

What Are the Steps of a Recruitment Process?

The steps of a standard recruitment process include:

  1. Identify the vacancy and hiring needs

  2. Create a job description

  3. Search for talent

  4. Screen and shortlist candidates

  5. Conduct interviews and test candidates

  6. Extend an offer

  7. Onboard and introduce the new employee to the team

What Is Effective Recruitment?

Recruitment is the most effective when you clearly understand the skills, experience and knowledge the vacant position requires.

What Are the Two Sources of Recruitment?

The two primary sources of recruitment are internal (through methods like employee referrals) and external (through things like a recruitment agency). 

Recruit the Best for Your Organisation

The most effective recruiting processes are often long and arduous, but finding the best possible people to fill empty positions within your company is worth the effort. 

Creating a positive candidate experience throughout the recruitment process can draw prospective employees to your organisation even when they’ve received multiple offers. 

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