When it comes to 2019 hiring challenges, many companies don’t take advantage of internal recruiting. This is puzzling, because most employers are intensely focused on retention. Plus many are struggling to meet staffing needs.
Internal recruiting helps on both fronts. Let’s discuss the relationship.
First, the fundamentals.
What is Internal Recruiting?
Internal recruiting is the process of identifying and attracting current employees to accept another job position within your organization.
Types of Internal Recruiting
- Promotions: When an employee is promoted to a higher position
- Location transfer: When an employee relocates to another office or sales territory
- Inter-departmental transfer: When an employee assumes a similar level position within their department
- Temporary-to-permanent: When an intern, temp, or part-timer assumes a full-time, permanent position
- Contractor-to-employee: When a 1099 independent contractor becomes an in-house employee
- Boomerang employees: Retired employees who return to work, sometimes part-time or as a contractor
Internally Assisted Recruiting
This is related to the types discussed previously. When existing employees recommend outside applicants, it can be extremely effective. One important difference is that it doesn’t leave a position vacated.
Current employees understand your company culture. They are in a position to know if a referral would also thrive in your organization. In one sense, they have performed a first-level screening.
What Are The Benefits of Internal Recruiting?
When an existing employee assumes another position, you save time and money on:
Minimizes Hiring Risk
Internal recruits fit in with the company culture and have established relationships. Plus, they are already on the payroll. If you make a hiring mistake, you may be able to move them back to their original team.
Career Development Opportunities
Most employees want to advance along a career path. This is only possible with promotions—a type of internal recruiting.
Faster Hiring and Time-to-Productivity
Internal recruits don’t need to be onboarded. They require less training. Plus, they often accept a job offer more quickly than an outside applicant. Finally, it’s less common for an internal recruit to ask for an extended interim before starting the new position.
Employee Engagement and Productivity
Companies that promote from within often have a more engaged and productive team. When they see your company investing in them, it improves performance and sense of common purpose. Employees who are invested in your business serve your customers better. When it comes to retention, a commitment to your mission can be as important as benefits and perks.
There is a higher retention rate for internal recruits in many industries. Presumably, they already enjoy working at your company. If they accept a promotion or transfer, they are probably planning to stay a while.
Tips For Successful Internal Recruiting
- Create rules
- Are all employees allowed to apply?
- Is there a minimum tenure for eligibility?
- Can managers invite employees from other departments to apply for positions on their team?
- Do employees need permission from managers to apply?
- Who needs to be involved in the decision-making process?
- Should you use an outside hiring team to screen and evaluate candidates to mitigate potential biases?
- Formalize internal job postings
- Give non-selected applicants feedback to help them the next time they apply for an internal position
- Screen internal employees just as carefully as outside applicants
- Use applicant tracking software for internal applicants the same way you use it for outside applicants
When Not to Use Internal Recruiting
Do you need fresh ideas in a department? If there is stagnation, an internal recruit may not be the best person for the job.
Do you need to increase diversity in your organization? Internal recruiting will only reinforce the status quo.
Have you created a new department? Are you planning to develop a new product? If you don’t have the necessary skills and/or experience on your staff, you’ll need to go outside your company.
ApplicantStack For Internal Recruitment
ApplicantStack applicant tracking software simplifies external and internal recruiting. Track applicants, write screening questionnaires, share feedback, and create structured interviews. Try ApplicantStack for free today.
Today’s post explores a fundamental issue in the recruiting industry: why you should automate recruiting.
Do you work as a hiring manager? HR director? Small business owner? It you are using paper-based recruiting processes, this post is for you.
Let’s discuss why you should automate recruiting.
Why Automate Recruiting?
- Process applicants more quickly and efficiently
- Create more effective screening materials
- Manage multiple job openings simultaneously
- Collaborate more easily with your hiring team members
- Engage with millennials and younger job candidates
- Reduce hiring expenses
- Stop duplicating work among your team
How Do You Automate Recruiting?
An applicant tracking system (ATS) is a type of HR software that automates hiring processes.
ATS software is similar to a customer relationship management (CRM) system. It allows you to track and manage applications, candidate interactions, online job postings, and team communication.
- Collect and track hundreds of applications and resumes
- Establish a central database of current and former applicants (talent pipeline)
- Create branded templates for job descriptions, questionnaires, emails
- Post to your favorite job boards with a single signon
- Track applicants through each hiring stage
- Changing an applicant’s stage triggers actions (i.e. emails, background checks, etc)
- Applicants complete pre-screening questionnaires and schedule interviews with a self-service interface
- Team members access cloud-based ATS’ from any mobile device—manage recruiting anytime, anywhere
Streamline Interview Scheduling
Scheduling technology simplifies interviews. Your team members mark their availability on a shared calendar. The ATS candidate interface presents applicants with pre-approved interview time slots.
This saves so much time you’ll kick yourself for not doing it sooner.
It also shows your company’s commitment to technology-driven efficiency and convenience. Millennials make up the largest employee demographic. Gen Z-ers are coming of age and entering the workforce. Both groups engage using digital tools. You simply can’t attract these potential employees without automated recruiting software.
Recruit from anywhere using mobile apps. See your ATS dashboard on any connected device. How are your job postings performing? Which applicants have completed screening questionnaires? Who’s interviewing tomorrow?
You have all that in your pocket. Around-the-clock. Recruiting superstars use mobile tools. You can too.
The Power of Pre-Screening
You post the job. Then you gather applications and resumes. Now the tedious, time-intensive pre-screening work begins. The pre-screening stage is a slowdown for many recruiting teams. If any recruiting task has been screaming for automation, this is the one.
You can pre-screen when a candidate applies with a custom application. Or email a questionnaire shortly afterwards. Video screening is also a brilliant recruiting innovation. With a pre-recorded video interview, the job applicant records a video of themselves answering screening questions. They can do it at their convenience—the software handles it. You can see your applicants before you invite them to schedule an in-person interview.
Automated pre-screening reliably shortens time-to-hire. It also helps you find higher quality employees faster by isolating top candidates.
Branded Recruitment Marketing
ATS’ let you brand your recruitment marketing. Job postings, applications, and candidate emails blend seamlessly with all of your marketing.
This helps your company present a cohesive image to applicants, customers, employees—and investors. This provides an important competitive edge. Especially for companies in industries with a low ATS adoption rate.
Establish Talent Pipelines
Today’s hiring challenges call for multiple recruiting techniques. One of these is creating and continually expanding a talent pipeline. An ATS collects and tracks applicants for your current job openings. Plus, it retains all applicants’ pertinent info in your database. This is critical for meeting long-term staffing needs.
Forward-thinking companies nurture applicant relationships in their talent pipeline. In the same way CRM systems help you connect with customers, ATS’ allow you to share relevant content as often as you like.
Automate Recruiting With ApplicantStack
ApplicantStack recruiting software automates every aspect of your hiring operations. It was designed by HR professionals for HR professionals. ApplicantStack is cloud-based, so you and your team can access it on any connected device. We handle the updates and rigorous data security protocols.
You can start using ApplicantStack today. Setup is quick and intuitive. But don’t let ease-of-use imply low-level functionality. ApplicantStack is a full-service applicant tracking system for companies of any size.
Welcome to our How To Hire Your Perfect Next Employee Series. Whether you are a new or veteran hiring manager, our series can help you improve your recruiting processes. In so doing, you will find perfect employees faster. And it will cost you less.
The Applicant Journey
In today’s post, we describe the process from the applicant’s point of view. This is called the applicant, or candidate, journey. Unfortunately, the applicant journey doesn’t always receive the attention it deserves. Yet the ApplicantStack candidate interface is key to our success. That means it’s key to your success as well.
ApplicantStack creates an exceptional applicant journey. Your company deserves nothing less.
Branded Recruitment Marketing
With ApplicantStack, you can brand your recruitment marketing. Or use our default layouts. In this article we’ll show you examples of both.
The Applicant Moves Through Stages Along The Applicant Journey
Before we continue, I want to remind you about applicant stages. It’s important to understand them.
A stage refers to one specific step in the hiring process. For example, an applicant could be in the interview stage. Or they could be in the manager review stage.
As you move an applicant through the hiring process, you change their stage in the system. Stage changes can trigger actions. For example, if you change an applicant’s stage to Do Not Pursue, you can cause the system to send a ‘Thank you for applying but you’re not a fit for the position’ email. You create a template for the email and even personalize it with merge fields. ApplicantStack will insert the applicant’s name.
As we talk about each point of contact between the applicant and your company, keep in mind that you can tie the applicant’s stage to auto communications.
The Applicant Sees Your Job Posting
Your job posting is the first point of contact in the applicant journey. Candidates can find your job posting on your chosen job boards (such as Indeed, Google, JuJu, CareerBuilder, Monster, etc.), social media sites, or your careers page.
Here are ApplicantStack job postings on Indeed. See the listing for the SwipeClock jobs:
Candidates look at these sites for jobs. Your ApplicantStack job postings start engaging candidates immediately. With branded postings, the applicant meets your employer brand at the first point of contact. Branded postings reflect the look and feel of the client’s website.
When the candidate sees your posting, they click a link which takes them to your application. (An application is called a ‘Questionnaire’ in the ApplicantStack system.)
Here is a questionnaire created in ApplicantStack:
Notice how easy it is to upload a resume. Applicants can use Dropbox or Google Drive. ApplicantStack makes everything easy and natural.
ApplicantStack has flexible settings to fit your ideal candidate. You can set the resume upload to allow the applicant to write a cover letter. If that isn’t customary in your industry, leave that turned off.
ApplicantStack Eliminates Redundant Processes
When the applicant uploads their resume, ApplicantStack parses some of the contact information. The applicant won’t have to reenter all of their contact information going forward.
Repeating tasks unnecessarily is frustrating for everyone. It’s especially frustrating for a job candidate who is in the process of applying for jobs at multiple companies.
Reentering contact info again and again wastes their time. And it makes your company seem twenty years behind the technological curve.
Personalized Candidate Emails
When the candidate fills out the application, they immediately receive a personalized email that confirms you received their application. If they are a good fit, you can reach out to them immediately.
The applicant never wonders ‘Did they get my application and resume?’ They see that your company is prompt and professional. You respect their time. You appreciate their interest in your company.
In ApplicantStack, you can use questionnaires for pre-screening. Screening questionnaires can play a role in a great applicant journey.
Here is a screening questionnaire:
Pre-screening questionnaires with knockout questions help eliminate unqualified candidates. This is how a questionnaire with knockout questions works:
You create a screening questionnaire with knockout questions. The knockout questions will depend on the job description.
The candidate completes the questionnaire. If they aren’t qualified, the knockout questions will filter them out.
You won’t waste any more of their time. If a candidate is eliminated, you can program ApplicantStack to send a ‘Thank you for applying but you aren’t a fit for the position’ email. You create an email template and ApplicantStack will use merge fields to enter the necessary information. (As mentioned previously, all candidates receive a ‘We have received your application,’ email immediately after applying.’)
If they pass the pre-screen questionnaire, the system presents the more extensive questionnaire.
If you want your applicants to receive the full questionnaire initially, you can program it that way. You understand the recruiting standards of your industry and company type. The job position also influences how you want to craft the process for your applicant.
You customize ApplicantStack to create an applicant journey that’s most effective for your hiring pool.
No-Hassle Reference Checks
In your questionnaire, you can ask for references. Your applicant will enter them when they apply. ApplicantStack saves them in the candidate profile. If the applicant passes the pre-screening and interviews, you can move them to the ‘Reference Check’ stage. When this happens, ApplicantStack will automatically email the references. This is called a Questionnaire Action in ApplicantStack.
This saves your applicant the trouble of re-entering their references. And you won’t have to ask them for their references again or find them on their resume. It keeps the process moving and eliminates a common bottleneck.
Interview Scheduling Reinvented
If the candidate passes the questionnaire screening, they are invited to schedule an interview. ApplicantStack interview self-scheduling is a game changer. ApplicantStack integrates with Google and Office365 for interview scheduling. Because of the integration, any non-available time slots will be hidden from the applicant.
Let’s discuss this in detail.
Decide how many members of your team need to be in the interview. For this example, let’s say three team members need to be there.
ApplicantStack will pull information from Google Calendar or Office365 for each member of the interview team.
Let’s suppose there are four specific time slots where all interviewers are available. The applicant is only presented with these time slots. The applicant can choose the most convenient time slot.
Let’s suppose there is only one time slot for which all hiring members are available. If this is the case, ApplicantStack presents the applicant with one interview time.
Your Applicant Won’t Be Frustrated With Scheduling Hassles
Interview scheduling is a hiring process bottleneck for many companies. With slowdowns, you run the risk of abandoned applications. Interview self-scheduling keeps the process on track.
When the background and reference checks are complete, it’s time to offer the job. Here is an offer letter email:
Notice the electronic signature. The applicant can sign and accept the offer immediately.
ApplicantStack ensures that you never lose an applicant because they are confused. ApplicantStack is always ready for each stage change. Candidates advance through hiring stages as quickly as your team chooses to process them. You will never have a slowdown because of the ApplicantStack platform. Your hiring team, the applicant, and their references control the timeline.
ApplicantStack can send hiring team members task reminders. Task reminders help your hiring team support a fluid, timely applicant journey.
By running reports in ApplicantStack, you can identify bottlenecks in your hiring process. This allows you to continually refine your process and keep improving your company’s applicant journey.
How To Hire Your Perfect Next Employee
We hope you’ve found our How To Hire Your Perfect Next Employee Series helpful. Here are the links to the posts on each specific step in the process.
We also have a comprehensive whitepaper, handy infographic, and hiring checklist.
The labor shortage is intensifying. Companies large and small are struggling to find qualified hires. Upper level positions sit unfilled a year after the job was posted.
ApplicantStack Understands Recruiting Challenges
For universal, detailed guidance on each step of the hiring process, consult our series How To Hire Your Perfect Next Employee: The Ultimate Guide. Make sure you are following best practices. We have a blog post for each step:
If you are following the guidance in our series, keep reading for additional techniques.
Because of the challenging hiring market, we will be focusing in detail on hiring strategies for specific industries. In the next few weeks and months, we will describe innovative methods for finding talent in the current hiring climate.
Today’s post outlines methods that can be used in any industry. Some work better for smaller businesses. Others work better for larger enterprises. If you can’t find workers, there should be several techniques here that can help.
1. An ATS Is Not A Luxury—It’s A Necessity
It bears repetition, if you haven’t adopted an ATS, do it now. If you are using paper-based recruiting, you are already at a disadvantage. An applicant tracking system (ATS) is no longer a luxury. Some of the techniques described in this post can be used with a manual recruiting process. But many have to do with HOW you use your hiring software. As such, they wouldn’t help you if you don’t use an ATS.
2. Contact Your Local Colleges and Universities
If you need college grads, grab their attention right when they graduate. Or better yet, just before. During their last semester, they are worried about finals. Many haven’t launched a full-on job search yet. You can catch their interest before you are competing with other employers.
Your local schools have careers offices that can help you advertise your jobs on campus. Participate in career fairs. Or host your own! Demonstrate your commitment to your community and strengthen your employer brand.
This technique is crucial if you are in a rural area. If you have highly specialized positions, it’s also a great method for targeting educated employees.
3. Network With Educators
This technique builds on the previous. Don’t forget to network with local college and tech school professors and careers counselors. If you employ remote workers, you can expand beyond your community. Build a relationship with those that are training the next generation of workers. They will become a valuable hiring resource.
4. Refresh Your Recruitment Marketing
If your current advertising is not working, you’ve got to mix things up. Tweak your job descriptions. Search your competitors to see how they are advertising for the same jobs.
Do your current job descriptions start out with the skills and experience needed? Re-organize your descriptions. Start with your organizational culture. Follow that with soft skills. Finish up with the other requirements.
In addition to reformatting the layout, refresh on a micro-level as well. Re-write your job titles, skills descriptions, and company perks.
Talk to your current employees. Ask them what they like most about your company. Make sure you include those things in your descriptions. They will give you ideas for articulating your company culture.
In ApplicantStack, you can save your job descriptions. ApplicantStack analytics show you how different versions perform. Use your ATS data for A/B testing.
5. Expand Flexible Working Arrangements
Consider creating more remote positions. This will expand your hiring pool to, well, the entire English-speaking world. Use ApplicantStack to post to additional locations.
6. Make Social More Effective
When it comes to recruiting, many companies treat social media as an afterthought. This is unfortunate because more and more job seekers are looking on social media sites for jobs. Or, perhaps more accurately, they are finding jobs on social media even when they AREN’T job hunting. This fact is important.
Post jobs on more social media sites. ApplicantStack makes this quick and easy.
As far as how you label them, don’t segregate these postings only as ‘Careers Postings’ or ‘Job Openings.’ Work them into more of your company’s social marketing. This takes creativity, but it will expand your reach with passive candidates. And remember, many people who see your social sites are passive candidates.
7. Tap Your Applicant Pipeline
This technique depends on a good ATS. For all previous hires, you isolated a pool of top candidates. You screened them. You interviewed many of them. A lot of work has been finished. Reach out to the almost-hired’s. The fact that they already applied means they were interested in working at your company. This is an important advantage.
8. Build Candidate Relationships
This technique is the natural progression from the previous. Think of each previous quality applicant as a ‘client.’ Nurture your client/applicant relationships. Formalize communications in your ATS.
9. Never Stop Evaluating Your Candidate Experience
Here are important questions to ask:
- Do you have an employee-centric application process?
- Is your application too darn long?
- Do you communicate with their preferred methods? (Hello texting!)
- Do you make it easy to schedule interviews?
- Is your careers page optimized for mobile?
- When they come in for an interview, is your team ready for them?
- Do you offer video interviewing?
- Is the interviewer prepared?
- How long does it take your team to make a decision?
10. Expand Internal Recruiting
It’s not enough to send an email that says, ‘We have a sales position open, spread the word.” Expand your thinking. Ask your employees about great co-workers from previous jobs.
Use a well thought-out process for asking for referrals. Create a script for referral communications. ApplicantStack has a template for requesting employee referrals. If you aren’t currently using it, now’s the time to put it to work.
Adapt the process you use for outside applicants. (Again, consult our series How To Hire Your Perfect Next Employee.)
An HR portal is invaluable for internal recruiting programs. SwipeClock’s WorkforceHUB has tools for internal recruiting and employee engagement. WorkforceHUB now includes ApplicantStack Recruit and Onboard! This all-in-one HR platform allows you to integrate your recruiting and core HR functions with ease.
11. Consider Promotions
Internal recruiting can include promotions. If you are having trouble filling a mid-level position, consider training a lower-level employee. It might be easier to fill the lower-level position.
Talk to managers. There might be a team member performing the necessary tasks. Especially if the position has been unfilled for a while. After all, someone is doing the work.
Consider the advantages of an existing employee. They have already been vetted. They have assimilated. This fact may trump their relative lack of experience in a higher position.
Use performance reviews to evaluate soft skills that could transfer to another position. Hopefully, you have a formal performance review process with thorough documentation.
Make it effortless for your staff to post open positions to their own social media sites. Create a referral reward program.
12. Leverage the ApplicantStack Knowledge Base
Review these articles in our recruiting and HR library. They are full of valuable hiring guidance—especially for hiring during a labor shortage. If you previously read them, keep in mind that some things may be more relevant for your company now. We wish you success as you work to overcome your hiring challenges.
Important Compliance Notice For New York City Employers
The New York City Human Rights Law (NYCHRL) was expanded to include protections for family planning decisions. The law became effective May 20, 2019. It applies to companies with 4 or more employees.
Under the new law, sexual and reproductive health decisions are defined as ‘any decision by an individual to receive services, which are arranged for or offered or provided to individuals relating to sexual and reproductive health, including the reproductive system and its functions.’
- fertility-related medical procedures
- sexually transmitted disease prevention, testing, and treatment
- family planning services and counseling including birth control drugs and supplies, emergency contraception, sterilization procedures, pregnancy testing, and abortion
NOTE: It does not require covered employers to provide specific reproductive health benefits. It is designed to protect employees from discrimination based on their sexual and reproductive health choices.
What Do I Need To Do?
You will need to update all equal employment opportunity (EEOC) notices and policies. This include recruitment marketing, applicant communications, and your employee handbook.
2. Describe the new protections as ‘sexual and other reproductive health decisions.’
3. Educate your hiring team, HR staff, and managers on changes made to company policies.
If you use recruiting agencies/headhunters, it’s a good idea to contact them about this change. You want to verify that they are aware of the new law and have reviewed their policies. This is especially important if they are located outside of New York City.
Applicant Tracking Systems Simplify Compliance
Following local, state, and federal employment regulations is difficult without HR software. Compliance can be one of the most stressful aspects of the recruiting process. There is no margin for error.
If you aren’t currently using an applicant tracking system (ATS), it’s a perfect time to start. ApplicantStack recruiting and onboarding software streamlines compliance with workplace laws.
ApplicantStack helps you document and maintain compliant hiring and onboarding practices. When laws change, you can update your hiring and onboarding materials quickly.
We have a comprehensive HR solution as well. WorkforceHUB from SwipeClock is a unified Human Resources portal that allows you to manage all core HR processes. It includes ApplicantStack recruiting and onboarding tools.
Create and manage compliant:
- Applications & screening questionnaires
- Job descriptions
- Structured interviewing questions
- Onboarding documents
- Staff training materials
- Employee handbooks
ApplicantStack can be customized for city, state, or federal employment laws. Whether you live in New York, Tulsa, or Chicago, we help you manage your business legally and efficiently.