06. Attracting applicants
Having defined the requirements of the job and communicated this to the people who need to know, you can consider how you are going to recruit. Effective recruitment involves knowing what it is that you want.
You will need to identify sources of potential recruits. These might include:
- internal recruitment;
- Job Centres;
- careers services and local schools;
- employment agencies;
- newspaper advertising;
- training schemes;
- professional recruitment agencies;
- word of mouth; and,
- speculative applications.
In most cases you will probably advertise in the local newspaper and/or use the Job Centres, depending on the sort of person you are seeking. There are a number of ways in which you can gather information about candidates, including: CVs, application forms, references, tests and interviewing. A summary of the recruitment and selection process is shown below.
Only you can decide what particular channel or channels are appropriate for the job that you advertise. All have their advantages and disadvantages. Some people, for instance, would never entertain speculative applications because many come from unemployed people. You should, however, in the interests of common sense as well as fair practice, try to reach as many of the type of candidate you want as possible. Don’t disqualify before the selection process - or, indeed, at any stage - on the basis of your own prejudices.
Recruitment advertising of any sort is about creating and managing the right impression with your potential candidate pool. At a minimum, this means disclosing the right information to this pool. Potential candidates will need to know:
- salary package;
- company description;
- job title and content;
- candidate requirements; and,
- accurate reply instructions.
If you fail to meet these criteria, you may, at a stroke, alienate suitable candidates, attract unsuitable ones and leave people with a sense of your incompetence. For example, a company once placed an ad in a national daily newspaper advising candidates to re-apply for a post because the original application forms had been stolen. Whilst this may have been honest, one has to question the wisdom of creating this type of impression.