Eight strategies to hire great people

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In this job market, you’ll have to do things differently if you want to avoid sifting through a huge stack of poor-fit resumes — or if you want to reach your dream candidates who already have a job elsewhere.

According to Business Insider, that’s why many companies are embracing creative recruiting.

Here is a list of ways companies are innovating the hiring process.

These methods can make your business stand out from the crowd and put you in touch with your ideal hires.

Use self-selection to find out who’s really interested

To help you better separate the wheat from the chaff, you should try adding another layer between resume-submission and the one-on-one interview. One option is inviting all eligible applicants to an open group event, such as an Open House.

A consulting start-up described how, of the 1,200 applicants who were invited, only 400 actually came. The CEO of the start-up said, “That’s self-selection. It’s so easy to apply for anything but 800 didn’t take the first step. That lowered the screening process.”

The Open House strategy also enables you to see how people interact in-group.

Arrange for group interaction

Interacting with potential candidates in a group setting is an excellent way to see their character, level of interest, working knowledge, and communication skills. It also lets you see if they’re a good fit with your corporate culture.

Interactive interviews can be conducted in different ways, but the fundamental feature is inviting select candidates in for a group session, where you and current employees can engage with them.

You could plan for “speed-dating”-style interviews with each of them, as I Love Rewards, a recruiting start-up in the United States, did.

Or, you could take a more creative approach, and set up various activities that will give you a better idea of each individual’s knowledge and passion for the industry, as well as their personality.

Handpick dream candidates and show them you want them

Passive candidates (those who are already employed and not actively job-hunting) are most likely to be your dream hires, but you’ll never attract them without letting them know how much you want them.

Reaching out in a really personal manner demonstrates that you’re willing to go out of your way to get their attention.

An article in BusinessWeek cites the case of video game company Red 5 Studios, who handpicked 100 ideal candidates and got to “know” them by researching their social media profiles and past work. The start-up then sent each one a personalised iPod equipped with a welcome from the CEO.

“The flattery paid off: More than 90 recipients responded to the pitch, three left their jobs to come on board, and many more potential hires discovered the company through word-of-mouth buzz generated by the search,” BusinessWeek says.

Attend events that are not job fairs

Job fairs often turn out to be useless, since the best candidates probably already have a job. So, you should try looking for great talents at other events that aren’t traditionally recruiting-related.

Search forums for group events that are likely to be attended by people qualified for your open position.

For example, if you needed a graphic designer in Nigeria, you could attend a graphic design-focused meetup and look for potential candidates. You’ll already know they’re passionate about what they do, and you’ll be able to get a feel for what they’re like in person.

Make yourself stand out with non-traditional media

A written job description on a job search site won’t necessarily make you stand out. A video or podcast, however, will do just that.

Using non-traditional recruiting media is also a chance for you to convey something about your corporate culture to job-seekers.

Whether it’s through a fun video on YouTube showing how awesome it is to be an employee at your business, or a recorded podcast describing the position and your company (“jobcasting,” as exemplified on Jobs in Pods), this strategy will differentiate you from all the other recruiters out there. Hopefully, it make you more appealing to the cream of the crop hires.

Actively search profiles and social networking sites

Rather than sifting through the hundreds of bad-fit resumes you might get in response to your job post, take the search into your own hands. That way, you’ll only see candidates who have the criteria that you want for the position.

Several websites allow candidates to create profiles that include their resumes and other details that can give recruiters a better understanding of their knowledge and talents. On Linkedin, for example, potential employers can see candidates’ resumes, conversations with others within the social network, and contributions to big-idea discussions.

Visual CV is another reputable place to look through candidate profiles.

You’ll not only be able to screen for the perfect resume, but you’ll also have a chance to learn a little more about that person pre-interview.

Advertise in places frequented by your ideal candidate

Online communities, as opposed to all-inclusive job boards, are another good place to target your recruitment process at a specific demographic. For example, if you’re looking for a developer, try searching for the terms “developer forum”; you’ll find multiple places just for developers where you can publicise that you’re hiring.

 Consider past candidates

Former rejections could make great hires now.

In the past, you may passed over a good candidate for some reason or another — perhaps their salary requirements were too high, or they weren’t an ideal for that other position.

Whatever the reason, if you think they would be good for this opportunity, it can’t hurt to get in touch with them now and see if they’re interested.