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Recruitment: quality rather than quantity

Published on :
20 Sep 2023
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Faced with a tight job market, companies are being encouraged to pull out all the stops to attract as much talent as possible. Unfortunately, amassing as many applications as possible in the hope of catching the "right fish" is a strategy of questionable effectiveness.

Worse yet, setting the number of CVs received as the objective to reach can be counter-productive, even harmful for both the company and the candidate: too long a procedure, recruitment error, bad candidate experience...

At Gentis, we are convinced that focusing on the quality of applications rather than quantity is a winning strategy. What are the reasons for this? And what can we do to attract quality candidates?

Here's how.

What is a qualified application?

First of all, let's agree on what a qualified application is. In HR terms, a company has two interconnected objectives: performance and fulfillment. From this perspective, a qualified candidate is one who has the skills to perform and who adheres sufficiently to the organization's values and culture to thrive.

Criteria #1: Skills

We all agree that a candidate is qualified when he or she possesses the key skills required for the job. But we can go even further. When it comes to building a lasting partnership, the potential of your future recruit is just as important as his or her level of performance. Let's take an example.

An IT engineer joined your ranks two years ago. As part of a restructuring plan, the career committee is looking to recruit a manager in the coming year. Good news: your IT engineer employee naturally takes the lead on a project! Promoting him/her to manager is a winning decision on several levels:

  • Your employee is familiar with the company, which saves time during the integration phase, and is a guarantee of security.

  • Promoting him/her strengthens motivation and commitment

  • Recruiting internally saves you money compared with external recruitment.

Criterion n°2: fit with the company's values and culture

83% of candidates consider a company's culture and values to be important criteria in a job offer (HelloWork 2022 survey). And rightly so! Because candidates who adhere to the company's values, culture and quality of working life policy are an element that reinforces the feeling of belonging, commitment, performance and well-being!

Focusing on the quality of applications: what are the benefits?

If recruitment is considered a thankless task, there's a reason: the profession suffers from a contradiction. On the one hand, the shortage of talent encourages recruiters to implement actions and strategies to attract as many candidates as possible. The aim behind this? To avoid finding themselves "without a new recruit", with all the negative consequences this implies for the smooth running of the department and the company: work overload, stress...

Processing incoming applications, however, requires concentration, time and the right tools. For example, when managed in-house by the HR department, the recruitment process is rarely the only task. There are others, just as important, such as personnel management and training.

The first advantage of focusing your recruitment strategy on the quality of applicants is therefore the reduction in your workload. And that's far from being the only one. There are others that will delight management and candidates alike:

  • The recruitment process is faster. This reflects a serious and organized corporate image. Talent also feels considered, which contributes to a good candidate experience.

  • With fewer applications to process, you take the time to study each one. Being in good conditions allows you to make better choices.

  • You can respond to unsuccessful candidates and provide constructive feedback. This practice improves the company's image and the candidate experience.

  • The financial risks associated with poor recruitment are kept under control. The more care you take in processing applications, the less likely you are to make a mistake in selecting the right candidate.

What can you do to attract qualified candidates?

There are several actions you can try. Here are just a few.

Define your needs with your manager

What are the future employee's duties? What are the department's and the company's expectations in terms of objectives and skills? What qualities and soft skills are required? These questions may seem obvious, but many managers don't fully embrace the exercise.

The result? You leave empty-handed with little to go on. Your advertisement sounds a bit " dull " and lacks precision and personalization. To avoid this, you need to give your manager a sense of responsibility.

Another important point to bear in mind is that job expectations must be aligned with business challenges. It is therefore important to interview the management team to ensure that the manager's needs are in line with the company's medium- and long-term objectives.

Display strong, singular values

Say goodbye to values such as "respect" or "innovation". The stronger and more unique your values, the more likely you are to attract the right candidates. To find out if your values are strong, ask yourself the following question: can a value contrary to yours be found among your competitors? If so, bingo: your company is unique!

Let's take an example. Trust is a key value in your organization. In the manager/employee relationship, employees are encouraged to be responsible and autonomous. There is no culture of excessive reporting or controlling management. An opposing value that might be found among competitors is vigilance. Employees must wait for approval from their N+1 before making a decision.

Build a recruitment campaign that reflects your company's image

Does your organization value diversity? Would you like to open up to other profiles, to talent with atypical backgrounds? If so, say goodbye to the conventional CV and cover letter! Instead, opt for situation scenarios and soft skills personality tests to find qualified candidates who will appreciate your approach.

Meet talent even when you're not recruiting

What if the best way to get qualified candidates was to meet more and more talented people? We think this is an interesting approach, as it allows you to build up a pool of qualified talent and reach out to passive profiles who are tuned in to the market. This way, when you have a need, you can turn to your network.

As you can see, quality over quantity is a strategy that pays off. To help you do just that, we've also detailed 10 best Recruiting tips for hard to fill roles and how to attract the best talent for that.

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