Yes, I know… you are sitting there scratching your head wondering what in the world I am going to talk about. Here’s the deal, what is up with the recruiters that post positions to all the normal spots, and then wait?

(Insert Jeopardy theme song here).

Yes, I understand since roughly 2007 it has been easy to have ginormous (Yes I know this is a mash up of giant and enormous) candidate pools for pretty much any opening. This approach to sourcing candidates is BORING and completely ineffective waste of time!

Why you ask? Well, because someone (likely you) will have the painstaking task of going through each and every one of those resumes to look for the right skills and qualifications. I would venture to bet that about 70% are not even really qualified for the role, and out of the remaining 30% there is only a small handful who are worth your time.

Dr. John Sullivan said it best in his blog post on ere.net in 2005 “The “you find us” category is the most commonly used, where a firm essentially posts a notice that it is looking for someone to hire and then sorts through those individuals who respond. The more proactive category, however, is the “we find you” approach, where a firm instead attempts to identify the names of top performers as individuals and then contact them directly. The first approach almost by design attracts “the masses”, while the other is more targeted to minimize the volume of applications and maximize the quality of the applicants.”

Get off your bum! Find the perfect person for the role you are recruiting for. Research them, reach out to them and do your homework. Here are a few simple questions you can ask yourself.

1. Are they the right fit for the culture?
2. Do they have the right skills?
3. Will they work well on the team that is already in place?

I know, hopefully to most this sounds basic but you would be surprised! I have networked with other industry recruiters at SHRM events and they start complaining about this really difficult to fill position and I ask “So what strategies have you used so far?” The answer that I receive EVERY SINGLE TIME is… “Well, I posted it on Monster, CareerBuilder, Craigslist and the local newspaper. My eyes start to glaze over and then my mind goes to “local newspaper…hmm… interesting.”

We need to wake up and realize that the economy, albeit slowly, is getting better and while it will mean a short influx of great candidates because they are feeling more comfortable about safely transitioning jobs—that will not last forever. Post-n-Pray is not, let me repeat, not an actual recruitment strategy—or at least not a good one.

Need some ideas? I am happy to strategize with you—send me a LinkedIn message and we’ll chat.

About the Author
Julie Crichton is a PHR-certified HR professional who works as the Regional HR Leader for McKinley, Inc.  Whether it’s through her role at McKinley or her community advocacy via her board seat at the Ann Arbor Film Festival, volunteer commitments at Habitat for Humanity, Dawn Farm and Shelter Association—the common theme that propels her forward is helping people.