The Internet has proven to be valuable for recruitment. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic reared its ugly head, recruiters were already extensively using the Internet to scout qualified workers and professionals:
- They post job vacancy notices on social media, job search websites, and local community forums to catch more attention.
- They invite interested applicants to submit their resumes online, both through formal (e.g., via the company’s website) and informal (e.g., via Messenger, Skype, or Facebook) channels.
- They do background checks by searching and analyzing applicants’ social media accounts and Google search results.
- They Google applicants’ names.
- They reach out to and recruit people whom they think will be an excellent addition to their company.
- They use specialized software for creating and tracking applicants’ profiles, contact information, skill sets, background information, achievements, and more.
Such a proactive approach to recruitment can no doubt lead to exciting new hires. Unfortunately, proactive hiring is an example of how too much of a good thing is ultimately bad.
A Tendency to Look Outwards
When a recruiter is proactive, he often finds passive applicants. These people are not actively looking for jobs; recruiters just find them through Google and social media searches. Many passive applicants are even employed at the time of contact but are later convinced to apply to another company.
Trouble can emerge when recruiters are more focused on finding qualified people externally instead of looking within their workforce. Longtime employees can feel overlooked and unappreciated and think that their careers won’t progress if they stay longer in the organization. This can lead to high turnover rates as employees today are quick to quit if a job or employer fails to meet their expectations.
- Takeaway: Recruiters should always consider internal hiring, especially when filling supervisory and management positions. Doing so prevents companies from losing good, tenured employees.
A dangerous pitfall of proactive recruitment is reading an applicant’s personality and character wrong. It’s so easy to put so much stock on information that’s readily available online, like social media posts and employee profiles. The problem is that such background information could be biased. In essence, people can be selective of what to share in public and build an image that’s contrived instead of genuine.
Recruiters who’re inexperienced in online recruitment are vulnerable to this mistake. Many cannot read the tells in the facial expressions or nuances in the tone and voice when they’re talking to applicants through a screen. They fail to determine if the candidate and the company are a good fit, as a result.
- Takeaway: It’s better to hire someone who shows aptitude and shares the company’s values instead of a candidate who’s qualified but will wreak havoc with your team’s dynamics.
These mistakes can have a resounding impact on a company as they can affect attrition and company culture. While it’s crucial to fill vacancies as quickly as possible, it’s more important to hire quality people, skills-wise and attitude-wise. Recruiters can succeed as long as they avoid the pitfalls of online recruitment.