6 Steps to Craft a Solid Recruitment Plan

Steve Lowisz

Recruiters are under a lot of pressure. Their judgment calls have a direct effect on a company’s bottom line. However, some of this stress could be relieved with a little bit of recruitment planning. 

A big part of recruitment requires input from internal hiring managers, HR, and possibly some of the higher-ups. In order to have the most successful conversations with these people, and then with candidates, recruiters must have a solid plan in place. One slip-up can easily make or break the success of everyone involved: company, recruiter, and candidate.

Follow these 6 steps to ensure you are putting your best foot forward:

1. Conduct a Skills Gap Analysis

Pinpoint skills the company currently possessesAs a third-party recruiter, it can be difficult to learn about another company’s long-term business goals. Normally companies divulge very little information about their long-term goals to outsiders. However, it’s necessary to gain an understanding of the vision for a recruiter to properly conduct a skills gap analysis. 

The only way companies will achieve their goals will be through their own team. And since it’s your job to source and interview new employees, it’s crucial to know what’s going on behind the curtain.

After you have a clear understanding, you’ll be able to whip up a basic skills gap analysis by doing the following:

• Pinpoint skills the company currently possesses
• Pinpoint critical skills the company will need in the future to reach its goals
• Review current versus desired skills and develop a plan to fill the gaps

2. Set a Personal Timeline

Breakdown the overall timeline you’ve been given to work on a project into bite-size pieces to help organize your recruiting process. For example, say you have until X date to deliver qualified candidates to the hiring manager. Tell yourself that you have until Y to source candidates and that all interviews need to be scheduled by Z. It’s not necessary to clue everyone in on the details of your plan; this personal timeline is for you to hold yourself accountable to.

3. Examine the Job Description

Companies tend to recycle the same job descriptions over and over to save time. But as businesses and departments grow, it’s natural for roles and responsibilities to change. Although it’s typically the company’s responsibility to update job descriptions, if you notice something seems off-base from what you’ve discussed, you should speak up. Recruiting candidates with an outdated job description can be a nightmare.

Chances are you won’t be able to include every single item from the skills gap analysis in the description. Some companies think that in order to snag the golden candidate, they must list every single ideal skill set. Instead what happens is that those overstuffed descriptions scare away candidates. It’s best to prioritize. What are the top 3-5 skills the company absolutely needs? What are the secondary skills?

4. Prepare Relevant Questions Before Candidate Interviews

As much as we all like casual interviews, they often don’t give us the answers we need to determine if the candidate is a fit. The lack of direction not only makes it immensely easy to go off course, but it opens a welcoming window for personal interview biases to influence our final decisions. The best way to remain objective is to prepare the same relevant questions for all candidates and keep the end goal in sight.

5. Keep an Organized Document for Note Taking

Eventually, you’ll have to reconvene with the hiring manager and share your notes, right? If they’re scattered and borderline incomprehensible, you can bet that they won’t be calling on you for future hiring needs.Since you’ll already have a list of interview questions prepared, you can use the same document for note taking. That way, everything you’ll need to reference will all be in one place. Just make sure to clean up your notes and clarify anything that may only make sense to you after each candidate interview.Large text.

6. Establish a Follow Up Protocol

It doesn’t matter if the candidate flopped the interview or if they nailed it. You HAVE to follow up! The candidate took the time out of their day to chat with you, and that deserves acknowledgment. Set a timeframe to reach out again after interviews and no matter what, don’t waiver on your follow-up protocol. 

Plan for Success

The takeaway here is that recruiters cannot do their job to the best of their ability without at least forming a simple outline of their plan. Us recruiters need as much information as possible to find candidates that clients actually want, need, and can retain. Find whatever works best for you to cover all the bases and rest easy knowing you’ve crafted a solid recruitment plan that will bring you success in the future!