Monday Metric: Putting Source Quality over Source Quantity

qualityoverquantityEmployers today have an almost unlimited number of channels for connecting with candidates – from the traditional job boards, to social media pages, to the word of mouth of their own employees. And it should come as no surprise that some of these methods are better than others in delivering the right candidates; those are the sources and channels that the company should focus on most in the talent acquisition process. But what happens if you’re rating those sources incorrectly?

When it comes to recruiting, many believe that bigger is better – the more candidates a particular source brings in, the more effective that source is in finding talent. But at a time when each job opening can attract upwards of 250 resumes, that puts extra burden on recruiters and hiring managers who must evaluate an ever growing number of candidates to find the needle in the haystack. Instead, employers must put quality over quantity. What good is having a large number of applicants if the vast majority don’t meet the basic requirements of the job? 

Forward-thinking companies recognize the need to look at recruiting in a new way – rather than focusing on the volume of candidates each source supplies, it is more useful to examine the quality of candidates that come from those sources. For example, let’s say you receive 30 applicants from a job board and 12 applicants from the internal referral program – it’s easy to assume that the job board is the more valuable candidate source. But if you take a closer look at how many of those candidates are advanced to the next round, you might find the opposite holds true. If only six candidates from the job board make it to the phone interview, and the same number of referrals progress to the in-person stage, the employee referral source becomes your higher-quality channel.

Equipped with this insight, you can focus your recruiting efforts and the source that brings in the highest quality candidates, whichever it might be. This enables your team to manage the recruitment budget better, putting more resources toward the sources that deliver the best candidates, and less into those channels that don’t provide the same level of quality. As a result, you can manage the budget and plans more effectively, realign the recruiting process and have real, data-based results to show senior executives. If you can prove that the referral program garners higher-quality candidates, they will be more likely to invest in an employee advocacy program or other initiatives to further beef up the employee referral channel.

As finding the best talent continues to be a challenge for all organizations, it is essential to focus on the channels that deliver not the most candidates, but the best candidates. By measuring source quality, based on how far candidates from each source make it through the interview process, you’ll have a clear picture of which sources those are and be able to refocus your recruiting strategy accordingly.

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