Engage candidates with a talent network in 3 steps

Across many industries, companies are figuring out how to remain focused on attracting and hiring candidates, even if budgets are tight or frozen. The main takeaway for employers that aren’t ready to hire yet is to build your talent pipeline, and while there are high-level and conceptual points to consider, what do you actually need for a pipeline to be successful? What steps do you take to build it in a way that doesn’t tax your team’s resources? 

Creating a talent network and building a pipeline is a strategic, long-term approach that can find you the right candidates and support your team through thick and thin. This strategy optimizes your employer brand (as well as the candidate experience), streamlines your sourcing and recruitment process, and lets technology take care of the nitty-gritty details so your recruiters can focus on people, not tasks. 

Step 1: Optimize your career site 

This is one of the first opportunities for candidates to engage with you as a potential employer. Customize your career page so it’s easy to use, takes only a couple of clicks to navigate and apply to a job, and reflects your unique culture, from an employee referral social platform or a blog series about your team members.  

Provide ways for potential applicants to get their contact information into your system. Some companies allow candidates to pitch their dream job or suggest a role, or you might simply offer a sign-up form for candidates to receive alerts about roles in certain departments. Share company updates, news about open jobs or anything a prospective employee might find valuable. This will allow you to stay engaged with candidates who actively want to hear from you – and will be more likely to get hired faster. 

Step 2: Automate your communications and screening 

Whether a candidate has signed-up to receive emails from your company, or a potential employee submitted an application, you should have auto-replies in place that nurture engagement and interest. Similarly, ensure your platforms incorporate questions to filter candidates. Someone might be a perfect fit for another role than the one they’re applying to, and without auto-filters to catch skills and experience, an otherwise great employee might slip through the cracks. And once a candidate is in your network, find a way to interact with them in real time, if possible. Push notifications from apps, live chats or virtual open houses can provide good opportunities for this approach. 

Step 3: Personalize your platform(s) to manage all those great applicants 

Every recruiter and hiring manager works differently, but one thing is universal: a simplified, streamlined approach to your tools. Try to consolidate the platforms you use and make sure your tools are really working for you, like custom widgets on your talent acquisition platform or training for other sites you use. You should have analytics and reports within easy reach, along with a quick and easy view of open requisitions, candidates that have applied and are available, messages, and other data to help you respond quickly to activities within your talent network. 


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