With 2020 defined by a disrupted market and displaced professionals with exceptional expertise scattered across the marketplace, being able to contact and recruit the right employee for the right business is essential.

However, with so many options available, it can be difficult to understand the tools at your disposal and what options are right for your business.

So, what are the choices available to individuals seeking to recruit and which methodology is right your business?

What options are available?

When it comes to securing the right professional for your organisation or client, there are certain challenges to overcome. Cutting through the noise of social media and the ‘always on’ culture to secure the right hire can be difficult; but is far from impossible.

Here are some of our favourite options to use as part of your outreach, starting with-

Direct Advertising: This involves the placement of dedicated advertising on known job and recruitment sites. While this lacks finesse and is generally perceived to be a ‘shotgun’ approach, this can cost-effectively maximise your reach and quickly boost the number of applicants that will contact your business.

Contacting the right recruitment specialist team can help make your material more attractive to the right candidate. Specifically naming your business can also help market your brand and increase familiarity with what you are doing. Your chosen recruitment team should also aim to be as inclusive as possible and open your doors to engaging candidates who may otherwise be harder to attract in the sector.

However, remember that it is vital to properly target your advertising as taking a slapdash approach can result in being flooded with the wrong type of candidate. Weeding through these individuals can take significant time and energy and often make your approach more trouble than it was worth. As direct advertising can be expensive, it is crucial to make sure that you follow any guidance necessary to ensure you ‘get it right’ first time.

Existing Databases: Or ‘pools’ can be accessed for a subscription from many providers. This can help save days of employee time sifting through old details or trawling the web for relevant providers.

Despite their effectiveness, this only allows you to access individuals that the provider knows of or have made them aware of their availability. This can lock you out from attracting candidates with special expertise or ones that may be an ideal fit for the role. This makes them best used alongside more targeted approaches or optimising your engagement through automation.

It is also vitally important to keep your own internal contact databases updated. Building relationships with attractive employees can ensure they are ready to ‘make the jump’ when their current tenure expires.

SEO and Targeted Advertising: Moving up a step, any significant engagement should ideally involve an element of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) or Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising. These allow you to fine tune the specific kind of candidates you would like to attract by geographic area, experience, interests, and more.

These can also be combined with the deployment of ongoing campaigns to help ensure that you’re tapping the right candidates on the shoulder and pointing them toward your business or your client’s website. If deployed correctly, these can be incredibly powerful and refined engagement tools – allowing you to work with speed and efficiency. However, it is important to remember that many campaigns can take time to gain momentum and engaging with a quality provider will almost always come with a premium price tag.

Gathering this information can allow you to crunch the data about your work, track the number of candidates you attract, and ensure that your approach is working. And if it isn’t, it’s time to get back to the lab with hard evidence to help make the changes that you require.

Social Media: It may seem strange to some here that social media engagement is ‘an oldie but a goodie’, and contacting potential employees directly is one of the most reliable forms of modern engagement. Almost every modern professional has a Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, or Insta account that they can use to market their work. With close to 90% of modern, young professionals using a range of socials, it can be a low-effort reservoir of talent.

social media

Despite this, it is important to remember that not everything that you see online is true to life. Many individuals will exaggerate their expertise and aptitude. And when brought into interview, can take time away from candidates who may have otherwise been perfect for the role.

Using social media can involve taking an inventive approach and using alternate social accounts to build a picture of a potential candidate. Just remember to be professional and respectful when approaching individuals in an unorthodox manner and provide credentials to back up your identity.

Legacy Candidates: Though it may be hard to believe, there are candidates out there that don’t have a massive online presence or aren’t advertising themselves. And in many cases, these are the types of hires that businesses dream about.

Whether their skills allow them to work part time, or they have niche ability that makes hiring a breeze, these individuals can be perfect to fit niche or valued roles. Choosing a seasoned employee can help transfer some hard-earned skills to younger employees and administrate and manage projects with greater ease. They may even currently be in an undervalued position and reaching out at the right time can secure a hire that requires minimal babysitting and can easily upskill.

Despite this, it is important to check that the professional has full aptitude in their sector and has refreshed their skillset over the period. While they may be able to ‘get up to speed’ quickly and bring their experience to bear, keeping up with their professional development and understanding of changes in your sector is vital.

Software Platforms: While there are a wealth of ways to engage with candidates online, carrying out a sustained recruitment drive will be significantly difficult without a dedicated software platform. This can help you create your own centralised spreadsheet of clients and maintain records on all the individuals you are interested in and your history of engagement with them.

Doing so allows your business to scale more effectively, cherry-pick the right candidate for the job through specific queries, and ensure that your data is easily searchable when a hire needs to be made with urgency.


While the systems are powerful and highly effective, it is vitally important to ensure that the system you use is not only fit-for-purpose but adaptable to meet future change. Taking some time to review your internal requirements can help you select a system that is right for you. This can help manage and report on your internal stable of potential employees and ensure that data entry errors and issues around information management are kept to an absolute minimum.

Which one is right for me?

The truth is – it depends.

One of the strengths of modern recruitment is the ability to take advantage of digital solutions, physical fixes, or a combination of both to address issues facing your work. Whether you are a dedicated provider or a client looking to make the most out of the opportunities available to them – taking time to review your specific problems can let you unlock a solution that suits your needs.

Taking an agile approach allows you to quickly road test a solution and quickly refine the output. This lets you create and test a hypothesis – allowing you to assemble a marketing and engagement plan to target your approach.

No matter your choice, working with an advisor with access to the right tools can act as a valuable force multiplier. This can quickly extend the reach of the smallest business, allow you to formulate a pitch that captures a dream-hire’s attention, and acquire the professional edge you need today.

What next?

If you want to learn more about the options and innovations available to improve your recruitment process, our team at Practical Software is here to help. With many years’ experience, our expert team work with your in-house systems to optimise your approach and tackle the unique issues facing your business.