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News flash: Top Talent Isn’t Looking at Your Job Postings

By: James Dix Thursday August 7, 2014 comments

As the battle for top-talent gets more intense every day, there's one simple fact that recruiters need to keep in mind: the most talented people don't look for jobs - they get offered jobs. When do you suppose the last time Pearl Jam had to demo an album before it went on sale? When do you suppose the last time Kevin Spacey had to audition for a role? At a certain point, talented people are sought out and have the luxury of being choosey, and this applies to every job in every industry. If you're not one of the recruiters actively pursuing top-talent, you're missing out on an incredible opportunity.

The only real long-term recruiting strategy with proven results is employer branding, so unless you're one of the top 10 best companies to work for, it's hard to just cold-contact heavyweight talent and expect them to hop on board. So, what's the best way to score talented people who aren't actively looking for employment but are open to other opportunities? What gets recruiters warmer introductions exceedingly quickly? Employee referrals.

Great referral programs are essential to successful talent acquisition efforts. I'm not trying to say that great candidates don't come from job boards, career sites, or other clever recruiting techniques, but with those, you do get clutter from innumerable unqualified candidates.

Your employees are good talent scouts who have excellent subjective information on everyone with whom they've worked over the years. Why not harness that information? With the proper tools, referral programs can save significant time and money while garnering opportunities to work with the best of the best.

Sure, you'll get a few good people through dated methods of recruiting, but it's a simple fact that the best people aren't looking at your job posting. You have to go get them.

About the Author: James Dix