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11 Creative Ways to Recruit & Hire Employees

Does the thought of rehashing old job descriptions and publishing them to the usual job boards make you cringe?

Are you wondering if there’s a way to make the hiring process more exciting for you and job seekers alike?

Are you looking to improve your quality of hire and attract more and more diverse job candidates?

If so, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve compiled 11 amazingly unique recruiting ideas to inspire you to change up your hiring process and get better results.

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1. Share Your Company Culture on Social Media 

The world’s top talent does not want to work for a company that has no personality. That’s why recruiters and hiring managers need to pay attention to their companies’ social media presence as part of their recruiting strategy. It’s one of recruiting’s best practices.

Having a strategy in place to showcase company culture on social media – or at least taking small steps to show what goes on behind the scenes in your organization – will help attract job seekers who are the right fit. 

For inspiration, look to tech giants Facebook and Google. They regularly use a mix of great visuals – including videos – and employee-generated content to showcase their positive, inclusive company cultures. 

Tip: Don’t confuse showcasing company culture with posting photos of every single trade event or meeting your team is attending. Aim to publish fun, useful, inspiring content that will be interesting to people outside of your company.

2. Put Employees in the Spotlight 

On social media and on your website, find ways to highlight your employees’ personalities, talents, and stories.

Automattic has a playlist on Youtube with videos of employees – also known as Automatticians – saying what it’s like to work for them.

Harvest has employee stories on their website that help outsiders understand what it’s like to work for a remote-first company.

Most of the content on HelpScout’s amazing blog is written by employees. Click on any post and you’ll see a name and a face.

Tip: Ask employees to record these videos on their webcams and send them to you. Don’t take this too seriously: what your employees say is more important than the quality of their videos.

3. Be on Medium

Sometimes, it isn’t enough to post content on your website or social media. To reach a wider audience and connect with top talent, your company needs to be discovered for what it has to say on Medium, a blogging platform.

Basecamp CEO Jason Fried published his thoughts on design, business, and technology on Medium for a number of years, helping to stimulate debate while simultaneously generating interest in Basecamp as a company and a product.

KaiOS Technologies’ UX Design Team uses Medium to share how they approach design for non-touch phones with small screens. In doing so, they attract the attention of other UX design professionals who are interested in usability and navigability challenges and how to overcome them.

Tip: Consider suggesting to co-founders and team leaders that they post on Medium about challenges and how they handle them.

4. Create a Recruitment Video 

Videos are the fastest way to make an impact and get your message across. Not surprisingly, they have become an essential feature of career pages.

Companies such as Mailchimp have exceptionally well-made recruiting videos on their websites that can serve as inspiration. But don’t get discouraged if your budget doesn’t allow for award-winning, high-production film footage at this time.

You can create a highly effective recruiting video on the cheap by hiring a freelance video professional. Or even better: you can create one for free by doing it on your own. If you’re fun and real, you’ll stand out from the crowd regardless of the camera that you used.

On that note, you don’t even need fancy equipment to create an amazing video – your smartphone is up to the task.

Tip: LinkedIn has an entire guide to creating your own recruiting video. You can download it for free here.

5. Organize a Virtual Event

Virtual events are a great way to attract job seekers and passive candidates.

You can host a virtual event that’s specifically related to open positions, such as Virtual Career Fair, or one that’s focused on a broader theme that pertains to your organization, such as a webinar about its approach diversity and inclusion.

Virtual events can be as simple as a Facebook live or as complex as an hour-long live webinar with guest speakers. Whatever the format, there’ll be some degree of planning, production, and promotion involved.

Depending on the type of event you choose to do, there could also be software and equipment costs. In general, though, virtual events are more budget-friendly than their real-life counterparts.

They’re also a great way to reach potential candidates who are geographically distant.

Tip: To start small, consider creating an “Ask Me Anything” thread on Reddit.

6. Encourage Past Employees to Return

Sometimes, the best new employees are former employees. Do you have a process in place that makes it easy for them to rejoin your workforce?

Past employees have the advantage of knowing your organization and culture. Likewise, you have access to their information and performance history. 

This usually simplifies and speeds up the hiring process. Because of their history with the company, past employees can often be exempt from a lengthy interview process.

Companies like Kronos even have a specific section on their careers page encouraging past employees to return, or to “boomerang,” as they say.

Tip: Working with application forms? Consider adding a field for applicants to indicate if they are former employees.

7.  Offer rewards for referrals 

Sometimes, the best way to reach top talent is to offer rewards to those who can refer them.

Ondeck offers $2,000 to anyone who refers a candidate that ends up getting hired. Scribe Writing is also known for giving away amazing referral bonuses.

While a $2,000 bonus might seem like a lot, it isn’t really, especially when you think in terms of time saved.

Software company Ideal estimates that recruiters and hiring managers spend approximately 23 hours manually screening resumes to make one successful hire. That means that a successful referral can save you three full workdays.

Tip: Can’t offer a money reward for referrals? Consider creating an employee referral program. 

8. Use Niche Candidate Networks

We mentioned niche candidate networks when talking about diversity recruiting – see step #3. There are a number of interesting networks out there, and tapping into them might just lead you to the perfect candidate. Tailor your recruiting message template to specifically target these niche groups.

Examples of niche networks include support organizations for veterans, for people with disabilities, for women returning to the workforce, and for formerly incarcerated individuals, to name a few.

Tip: Educate yourself about niche groups and their specific needs. Work with a support organization that can help you achieve your goals.

9. Recruit Students

Universities can be an excellent source for your target recruiting pool. Companies such as Salesforce regularly look to university campuses to grow their talent pool.

One way to start the process of connecting with and recruiting university students is to host an online event or competition designed for them.

Tip: Before you begin, consider making your website student-friendly. You can create a landing page exclusively for students and recent graduates. 

10. Recruit Volunteers

Organizations that do good or organize highly sought-out events have the luxury of being able to work with volunteers.

These volunteers tend to be highly informed about the organization and its mission and values. They also tend to be highly engaged.

Volunteer opportunities are a great way for hiring managers to get to know potential candidates, as well as for brand evangelists to get their foot in the door.

Non-profit organizations such as Wikimedia and ActionAid UK rely on the help of volunteers in addition to the work of paid employees, and volunteering is often a first step towards entering the workforce.

Tip: Give volunteers an amazing experience. They should be having fun and engaging with the team. 

11. Hand out Cards to Potential Employees

Ever meet a service provider you think would be a great addition to your team? With special recruitment cards, you can take full advantage of these opportunities.

A recruitment card is basically a business card you hand out to someone you think would be a great fit for your company. The card often acknowledges the person’s exceptional qualities and includes a link to the company’s careers page.

Apple famously uses this strategy to recruiting customer support specialists. You can see their recruitment card here.

Your Turn

We hope these creative recruitment ideas have inspired you! If you do end up using any of them – or you have your own ideas to share – let us know @TextExpander and on Facebook.

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