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Talent Curation: How Recruiters Can Get Ahead of the Competition

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Talent Curation: How Recruiters Can Get Ahead of the Competition

On May 12, 2021, People2.0’s Senior Vice President, Enterprise, Derek Sanders, together with Kevin Poll, Global Head of Strategic Partnerships and Diversity and Inclusion Strategies for WillHire, will be heading up a joint discussion at the ACSESS National Conference.

The ACSESS National Conference brings together professional speakers, leading industry trainers, and subject matter experts to present on topics that enable recruiters and staffing agency owners to minimize risk and look at positive opportunities for the future.

The People2.0/WillHire joint discussion will center on the importance of talent curation in the recruitment and staffing industry. Finding and engaging top talent quickly and efficiently is the number-one goal when companies hire, whether it’s for full-time or contract employment. And while direct sourcing is the go-to strategy for doing this, the most critical part of direct sourcing is talent curation.

What Is Talent Curation?

In direct sourcing, you leverage your agency’s brand to attract top candidates. What should you do once you’ve attracted top talent? That’s where talent curation comes in, and, unfortunately, many recruitment firms miss this critical part of the direct sourcing strategy.

Talent curation means not only continuously finding a larger pool of candidates but then also taking care of those candidates throughout the entirety of the process. It’s about engaging candidates and nurturing candidates over the long term. Talent curation is strategic, systematic, and tailored by role, industry, and skill.

In talent curation, you proactively build your talent pool with not only the skills required to meet today’s hiring needs but tomorrow’s needs as well. You assess and test skills, screen, and interview candidates ahead of time to validate the perfect fit. By staying connected with candidates and keeping the communication channels open, you then nurture the relationships with top talent until open roles become available that match their skills.

Why Focus on Talent Curation?

Talent curation immediately provides value to the hiring process. It helps ensure you have the right skilled talent available for positions as soon as you need them filled. Once a client comes to you with an open role, you can look to your already-existing, skilled talent pool to find the perfect match for the job, quickly and efficiently.

Clients appreciate the speed and ease of hiring that comes with this strategy. In fact, on average, time to fill is reduced by 30 to 50%. What’s more, candidate quality is improved and the hiring ratio is approximately 3x better.

Candidates also benefit from a better experience throughout the process, from the improved communication they receive from recruiters to jobs that better suit their preferences and skills. It’s a win-win.

How to Succeed with Talent Curation

The first step to success with talent curation is to create a strategy. Forecast your clients’ future demands for talent, right down to the skills you expect they’ll need. Consider the trends you’ve been seeing in the past several months to determine which roles will be most likely in demand and in which industry. Identify your highest recurring skills needed: Which role crops up the most and has the highest hiring volume? Which skills are required for this job?

Then, plan to curate talent that fits these anticipated needs. Positions that are hard to fill should also be given priority since it helps to have more time to recruit and assess candidates for these roles.

Next, lay out your recruitment, assessment, skill testing, and interviewing plans.

Ask yourself:

  • Where will you recruit top talent with the skills you’re looking for?
  • Will you use technology to aid in talent curation?
  • Which skill assessment and testing model will you use?
  • What will your interview process look like?

Another key to success with talent curation is candidate engagement. In this strategy, you’ll be recruiting, screening, assessing, and interviewing candidates ahead of time, before you have open roles to fill. You must then keep these qualified candidates engaged until the right role comes along that fits their experience and skills. Constant communication is vital to candidate engagement.

Email is a great channel to leverage here. Consider automated email nurture campaigns to keep in touch with minimal effort. You can send personalized emails to share relevant content candidates might find useful and to share company or industry news. These automated emails will help you stay top of mind and improve the candidate experience by ensuring top talent doesn’t feel neglected during the hiring process.

How to Use Technology to Aid in Talent Curation

Recruitment is all about people, and no technology can replace humans. However, the right technology can aid in talent curation. It can streamline and standardize the process, provide unbiased assessments of talent, and even help reduce the time commitment associated with candidate engagement. After all, creating and engaging talent pools doesn’t have to be a time-consuming administrative burden.

Consider using artificial intelligence (AI) to analyze candidate data and screen applicant profiles. AI can identify the strongest candidates based on skill and experience matching. An AI chatbot can also help with candidate engagement by answering common questions that your recruiters would normally have to spend time answering manually. Artificial intelligence can also be useful in the interview process. It can automate scheduling logistics and improve hiring velocity with real-time confirmations and updates.

Testing and assessment platforms also provide value in talent curation. This type of automation can remove bias from the hiring process, eliminate decision-making based on gut feelings, and offer more accurate testing of skills, strengths, weaknesses, and aptitudes. Testing and assessment platforms can standardize the hiring process to increase hiring quality and success.

Win the War for Talent

Talent curation is the number-one way to quickly and efficiently find and engage top talent for clients. A solid talent curation strategy can also help you establish your agency as an industry leader and preferred employer in the war for talent. If your firm engages in direct sourcing for clients, make sure to add talent curation to your strategy to improve the quality of your candidates and improve your firm’s hiring success.

Excited to learn more about talent curation? Register for the virtual ACSESS National Conference today to join the panel.

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