The one way to have “ready” talent

In our last conversation, we talked about how there’s no shortcut to good hiring. If you want to find rare talent, you have to develop a robust pool of candidates and screen for the best people. But there is one way to do some of that work before you have a need so that you aren’t so panicked when you are short-handed. I call it continuous recruiting. 

When you are short-handed you are in your worst mental state for evaluating talent. You are doing 3 jobs: your job, the job that the open position is supposed to do, and the job of recruiting — so you are desperate for help. It’s all hands on deck and any port in a storm!

But if you have a position that you are always short-handed in, or if you have a role you think you might be needed in the next few months, you can start the hiring process before you have an open position.

Here are the steps to implement continuous recruiting:

  1. Do the work you’d normally do when hiring; write a good job description and a compelling job posting.
  2. Put that position on your website and advertise it on some job boards (especially if there are some specific to your industry) to start collecting applicants.
  3. Set aside time once a week to screen applicants and schedule phone screens
  4. Set aside one day a month to see candidates for interviews. 

When you do this, you aren’t desperate. You aren’t in a scarcity mindset while overwhelmed with 3 jobs. You’re just looking at candidates.

You’re shopping, not buying

If you find an exceptional candidate you can bring them back for another interview — maybe you hire a little ahead of your need, or maybe they are an excellent candidate so you make room for them on your team by letting go of your worst performer. Either way, you have good talent “at the ready” in case someone leaves or you get a sudden surge of new business. 

Further, you have a better idea of what the market is for the positions you hire for regularly. You get a sense for what the market salaries look like, you know what talent is readily available and what skills might be harder to acquire. 

This continuous recruiting takes time each week, but it might save you from a lot of headaches down the road. And what is more important to the success of your business than a strong team?

If you feel like you need to sharpen your hiring skills, I’ve got a bundle of resources that can help:

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