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18 Recruitment Strategies To Try In 2020

24 Apr 09:00 by Jamie Silman

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As technology continues to develop, there seems to be an ever-growing list of recruitment strategies for companies to choose from.

But with many guides simply recommending making changes to your interviewing process or job descriptions, we thought we’d explore some of the strategies we’ve seen our clients use, or that we’ve had success with ourselves.

Your company may already be trying some of these tactics, but if you’re finding it difficult to find great candidates for your roles it could be time to switch things up a bit by trying something new from this list of recruitment strategies.

1.Employer Brand

If you’re looking to increase the number of people who actively seek out positions at your company then you’ll need to invest time and money into building a strong employer brand.

Unfortunately, this isn’t something that happens overnight as it takes time to develop your reputation as your business grows and becomes more well-known within the industry.

However, research has shown that companies that take the time to invest in their employer branding are three times more likely to make a good quality hire than those that don’t, making it a worthwhile investment for any company looking to improve the effectiveness of their recruitment.

2.Social Media

Using social media for recruitment is nothing new, but if you’re not using it as part of your recruitment strategy you could be missing out.

Hundreds of millions of people use social media every day, and somewhere out there your potential employees are probably using it too.

Much like building an employer brand, building a following on social media doesn’t happen overnight, but companies that make the effort to invest can see an increase in the number and quality of their applications.

3.Niche Job Boards

The standard approach for many companies and recruitment agencies is to place their job advert on as many of the larger job boards as possible, to gain as much exposure as possible.

While these platforms might have a larger number of potential candidates, they also lack focus, making it difficult to stand out to potential employees.

Many industries now have their own job boards that allow companies to advertise their roles to a very targeted audience, so if you’re struggling to find employees using your existing strategy, it’s worth investigating the sites that cater to your sector.

4.Employee Referrals

One strategy often overlooked by companies is employee referrals.

Employee referral schemes are relatively quick to set up, can deliver a steady stream of potential employees for many years to come, and can actually work out much cheaper than many other strategies.

It’s also a great way to reward your existing employees while having them sell the company to friends and acquaintances, and it’s likely that friends of existing employees will be a good cultural fit for your company.

5.Rehiring Former Employees

Another recruitment strategy many companies overlook is rehiring former employees.

While you don’t want to hire former employees who were let go for misconduct, or who left on bad terms, if someone left on good terms and there’s an opening that would suit them, it could be a great fit.

It can be beneficial for both parties as they will have more skills than when they left, and they won’t take much time to adjust or settle into the company.

This could also work for people who have previously contracted at the company, and who are now looking to make the transition to a permanent position.

6.Data Driven Approach

If you have an existing ATS system or database, it could be worth digging a bit deeper into the data to find out which recruitment strategies found your best employees in the past.

For instance, if a high proportion of employees applied for the position through a specific website, then it might be worth focussing your efforts there instead of on other platforms.

Similarly, if you have lots of employees who all leave after 6 months, use the data you have to try and identify why that might be the case, and then test your assumptions moving forward.

7.Previous Applicants

Alongside digging deeper into the data, an ATS system means you can try contacting people who have previously applied for open positions at your company.

These might be candidates who were a great fit, that passed the interview, but didn’t take the position due to extenuating circumstances.

These candidates have the benefit of having already been screened and qualified, and may have just missed out because of small details when it came down to it, so if you’re struggling to fill a position, see whether you’ve got any candidates on your database.

8.Hosting An Event

A great way to build up industry connections, and leverage the power of your existing employee’s networks, is to host an event.

This could involve bringing in some guest speakers, and inviting professionals from the area to attend, but the conversations and connections made could reveal a goldmine of potential employees who are looking for their next opportunity.

9.University Recruitment

If you have a local university, with a particularly strong program relevant to your business, it could be beneficial to build a relationship that helps students to get experience, while supplying you with a steady stream of new employees.

Just think of how much easier recruitment would be if you could ring the class professor and get their recommendation of students to offer internships to each year. It could help with seasonal work in the summer holidays, and could highlight some great graduate candidates for full time positions when their studies are over.

10.Ignore Their CV

If you’re struggling to find skilled workers, why not try skills-based testing instead of asking for candidate’s CVs?

While it might sound strange, companies are making the switch to help speed up the application process. Tests can automatically filter out those who aren’t technically qualified for a role, leaving you to filter those remaining by cultural fit.

While it might be easy to inflate skills or experience on a CV, a test ensures you’re only speaking to people who can actually walk the walk!

11.Military Transfer Scheme

Many larger companies now have a form of Armed Forces employment scheme that helps veterans to transition to civilian jobs that make use of their highly valuable skillset.

Smaller companies, however, are further behind in offering these types of schemes, so it could be worth developing your own program, provided your roles will make use of the qualifications service members have.

12.Create Something Viral

Creating something viral is much easier said than done.

And while it may be more of a job for the marketing department, there have been several companies over the years who have found overnight success with viral posts and videos, which has led to their brands being sought after by potential employees.

It may be a long shot, but if you’re investing in social media recruitment, a viral post could change everything overnight!

13.Paid Ads

Whether it’s creating awareness for an opening by promoting content or application pages on Facebook, or targeting people actively searching for jobs with a PPC campaign, paid advertising can have a big impact on the number of applications you’re getting for a role.

The beauty of paid advertising is that it can be switched on and off as required, meaning you only have to use it when you want to. However, it can be costly if you get it wrong so seek some advice from a marketing professional before you bid on all of the keywords you can!

14.Help Companies Making Lay Offs

If a company in your industry is laying people off, but your company is looking to hire more staff, it could be an opportunity to form a partnership with that company and offer their staff positions at your firm.

You know that they already have jobs in the right industry, so their already qualified to work in your field, and it could be a good way to build some positive PR for your company too.

15.Advertise On Podcasts

In the US alone, 16 million people described themselves as “avid podcast fans” and with the number of podcast episodes growing daily, it can be a fantastic way to reach potential candidates within your sector.

With podcasts available for almost any industry, sponsoring a few episodes could be a unique way to increase awareness for your business, and encourage people to apply for open positions.

16.Hire A Recruitment Agency

Sometimes there are positions that feel like they’re impossible to fill!

If you’ve got a highly technical role that you’re having difficulty finding qualified candidates for, it could be time to speak to a specialist recruitment agency.

Recruitment agencies have a database full of potential candidates ready to work, and an extensive network of contacts within their industry, making them highly valuable for roles that you’re struggling to fill.

(If you’re looking for a specialist engineering recruitment agency then why not get in touch with us to discuss your role?)

17.Bring In Contractors

If you’re struggling to find permanent employees to fill a position, it could be time to consider bringing in a contractor to fill the role until you can find someone on a more permanent basis.

While this can be costly, if it’s a key role it can help to keep your business moving forward, while also offering the chance for other workers to get a fresh perspective on the processes and workflows being used.

There is also the chance, with the changes IR35 will have on the contracting market, that a temporary worker will be looking to take on a position full time, negating your need to hire anyone else!

18.Try Remote

One of the effects COVID-19 has had on the global workforce is highlighting how many jobs can actually be performed remotely.

If you can’t find someone locally to fill your positions, maybe it’s time to look further afield, and offer the role as a fully remote position?

This opens your company up to potential employees from all over the world, massively increasing your potential talent pool, and giving you a much wider choice of employees.


So, there you have it, 18 recruitment strategies you can try in 2020.

Finding skilled workers often feels like a never-ending job, but if you’re feeling stuck, then it could be time to give one of these strategies a shot – you never know what might happen!

If we missed your favourite strategy from the list, get in touch and we’ll be sure to add it to the list!