People Operations | Management

The Recruitment Process

The recruitment process is an important part of human resource management (HRM). It isn’t done without proper strategic planning. Recruitment is defined as a process that provides the organization with a pool of qualified job candidates from which to choose. Before companies recruit, they must implement proper staffing plans and forecasting to determine how many people they will need. The basis of the forecast will be the annual budget of the organization and the short- to long-term plans of the organization—for example, the possibility of expansion. In addition to this, the organizational life cycle will be a factor. Forecasting is based on both internal and external factors. Internal factors include the following:

  1. Budget constraints
  2. Expected or trend of employee separations
  3. Production levels
  4. Sales increases or decreases
  5. Global expansion plans

External factors might include the following:

  1. Changes in technology
  2. Changes in laws
  3. Unemployment rates
  4. Shifts in population
  5. Shifts in urban, suburban, and rural areas
  6. Competition

Once the forecasting data are gathered and analyzed, the HR professional can see where gaps exist and then begin to recruit individuals with the right skills, education, and backgrounds. This section will discuss this step in HR planning.


Recruitment Strategy

Although it might seem easy, recruitment of the right talent, at the right place and at the right time, takes skill and practice, but more importantly, it takes strategic planning.  An understanding of the labor market and the factors determining the relevant aspects of the labor market is key to being strategic about your recruiting processes.

Based on this information, when a job opening occurs, the HRM professional should be ready to fill that position. Here are the aspects of developing a recruitment strategy:

  1. Refer to a staffing plan. 
  2. Confirm the job analysis is correct through questionnaires.
  3. Write the job description and job specifications.
  4. Have a bidding system to recruit and review internal candidate qualifications for possible promotions.
  5. Determine the best recruitment strategies for the position.
  6. Implement a recruiting strategy.

The first step in the recruitment process is acknowledgment of a job opening. At this time, the manager and/or the HRM look at the job description for the job opening (assuming it isn’t a new job). 


Assuming the job analysis and job description are ready, an organization may decide to look at internal candidates’ qualifications first.  are people who are already working for the company. If an internal candidate meets the qualifications, this person might be encouraged to apply for the job, and the job opening may not be published. Many organizations have formal job posting procedures and  in place for internal candidates. For example, job postings may be sent to a listserv or other avenue so all employees have access to them. However, the advantage of publishing open positions to everyone in and outside the company is to ensure the organization is diverse. 


Then the best recruiting strategies for the type of position are determined. For example, for a high-level executive position, it may be decided to hire an outside head-hunting firm. For an entry-level position, advertising on social networking websites might be the best strategy. Most organizations will use a variety of methods to obtain the best results. 


Another consideration is how the recruiting process will be managed under constraining circumstances such as a short deadline or a low number of applications. In addition, establishing a protocol for how applications and résumés will be processed will save time later. For example, some HRM professionals may use software such as Microsoft Excel to communicate the time line of the hiring process to key managers.


Once these tasks are accomplished, the hope is that you will have a diverse group of people to interview (called the selection process). Before this is done, though, it is important to have information to ensure the right people are recruited. This is where the job analysis and job description come in.