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  • The Woolf Partnership

"A Leader's Lasting Value Is Measured By Succession" ~ John C. Maxwell

Recruitment can feel a little like a rollercoaster. When an integral employee resigns, companies have to scramble to backfill that position. Reactive hiring can be expensive and often detrimental to productivity.

We advise our clients instead, to build a pipeline of talented and qualified people who will be there when you need them. Building and maintaining a talent pipeline isn’t easy, but it’s worth it.

What is a Talent Pipeline?

A talent pipeline is a collection of brilliant, culturally suitable candidates that you build and nurture, even when you don’t have specific job openings for them. Studies place the average time to replace any given employee at 41 days. That’s around six weeks, and that’s just the average time. 

A robust and well-maintained talent pipeline is the solution to these problems. But how do you build a talent pipeline?

Step 1: Develop Relationships with Passive Candidates

You’ve probably heard the saying, “The easiest way to get a job is to have one already.” The statement has some truth in that the best talent are often already employed. They may not be looking for a job right now, but would be open to better offers someday. These are what are known as passive candidates. Picking up the phone (YES THE PHONE!) and developing relationships with passive candidates is the first step toward building a strong talent pipeline.

Step 2: Utilise Talent Communities and CRM Systems

CRM apps are essential tools for sales and marketing groups, they provide a central location for customer data. These same CRM systems also help build a talent community of passive candidates. If you are still using excel spreadsheets to track candidates, put down your floppy disc and please come on in to the GDPR century. You are going to love it here.

Connecting your company’s CRM to your recruiting site or other inbound channels allows you to collect valuable information on a talent pool. You can also use CRM features to stay in touch with these potential candidates. With most CRMs, these tasks can be automated, helping you nurture relationships for possible recruiting in the future.

Step 3: Engage With Industry-Specific Events and Forums

Much of building a talent pipeline comes down to old-fashioned networking. Industry-specific events like conferences and job fairs are excellent networking opportunities. They’re also a chance to market your company to both active and passive candidates while you’re building up a talent pool.

Step 4: Implement Targeted Email Campaigns

Your sales and marketing teams use targeted email campaigns, and you can do the same to nurture relationships in your talent pipeline further. Whether it’s regular newsletters or announcing an important job posting, email is an effective way to keep your company’s name fresh in passive candidates’ minds.

Step 5: Maintain Regular Communication with Potential Candidates

Again, borrow a page from the sales and marketing playbook and maintain regular communication with potential candidates in your pipeline. Check in on your passive candidates. Make conversation. Have a chat. You can reach out for a general reason, to check in to see how they’re doing, or to let them know about a specific opportunity they might be interested in. They might even tell you about their colleagues who you can add to your pipeline. Or give you a tidbit of market intel. The possibilities are endless.

Ultimately, it is about building a network of talented, motivated individuals who are already bought into your business. Not only will this reduce your time to hire, but it will also do wonders for your brand!

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