Post excerpt: In search of the best and brightest talent in today’s competitive job market? Don’t miss these tips.

There are 9.1 million unemployed people in the U.S. as of the latest report from the U.S. Department of Labor. That translates to a whole lot of potential resumes crossing the desk of the average hiring manager. How do you know which of these are right for your company and which are destined for the recycle pile? These tips can help you focus your hiring efforts on recruiting the best and brightest talent.

Hire Smarter

Savvy hiring begins with a job description that clearly delineates the nature of the position. Identify sought after applicant characteristics by looking to your current workforce: which employees exemplify the necessary skills and behavioral traits for a particular position? The more specifically you hone in on your needs, the more likely you are to cast a net that not only captures active job seekers, but passive job seekers, as well.

Get Emotional

No, we don’t mean tearing up over how much you miss spending time with your dearly departed Great Aunt Josephine during the job interview. We’re talking about factoring emotional intelligence (IE) into your hiring decisions. While IQ matters, it can only go so far. Research shows that the most successful employees offer a winning blend of “hard” and soft” skills. When vetting job applicants, be sure to consider both cognitive and social capabilities for the most accurate indication of future performance.

Think Outside the (Check)Box

Today’s employers have to think creatively, and flexibility is at the top of the list. If an applicant is not a fit for a specific position, actively try to identify a position within your organization that will capitalize on his/her strengths. Good employees are hard to find. Don’t let one get away because of rigid, short-range hiring practices.

Recruiting_Top_Talent_in_the_21st_Century_Job_Market

Even if there’s no appropriate current opening, staying in touch with strong candidates is an essential part of stocking your talent pool. Human resources management tools can help you track candidates internally as they move through your pipeline. Collaboration is key when it comes to implementing effective, comprehensive human resources systems: integrated, company-wide efforts produce results.

Your New Best Friend

Social media is increasingly driving candidate sourcing and hiring, but it’s not just for weeding out the obvious duds and also-rans. Today’s job seekers are also using social media to vet prospective employers. If you’re not already using your website and social networking to reach applicants, what are you waiting for? Identify sites, forums and discussion groups where industry leaders and up-and-comers convene. Not only does this get your name in front of candidates, but it also helps establish your company as an industry thought leader. But not just any old social media posts will do: consistency of voice and mission is instrumental in building your brand.

Company Culture Matters

With historically low unemployment rates and plenty of job seekers pounding the pavement, the competition for jobs is stiff, but so is the competition for top talent. Make your company irresistible by creating a workplace where employees want to work.

And remember: Employees want to feel part of something bigger than themselves. Give it to them. You can also enhance corporate culture by filling open roles from within your internal talent pool whenever possible. This leverages experience and “fit” into cost effective hires with proven success.

Talent management strategies and solutions are different today than they were 50, 20 or even 5 years ago. Finding the best employees is no longer a simple matter of sorting through resume piles, but of leveraging a robust range of resources — from traditional to cutting edge — into proactively identifying and capturing the best talent.

For more information on best practices for 21st century hiring, contact the WittyParrot experts today.

Talent Acquisition At Your Fingertips

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