The Problem With Re-active Recruiting
There are some tried and true "traditions" that normally come with the recruiting process. One in particular needs a proper burial for today's market. That tradition is re-active recruiting. You know it well. Someone walks into a managers office to say they are taking a promotion at XYZ company, or they are re-locating to be closer to family, etc...the reasons are plenty why a seat just became available on your team. It can often seem to come out of left field and be especially difficult when the announcement comes from someone with tenure or who has shown themselves to be a great employee who managers can count on.
As a manager, you have to process the news, inform HR and then put a plan in place to find a replacement. If you're lucky there will be some strong internal candidates to select from, but if you're like most you're about to undertake an arduous task of searching for your new right hand person and unfortunately it's not going to be fun unless your company is one of the well sought after employers that don't need any more publicity about how great they are to work for.
So what can you do to avoid this adventure in the first place? Glad you asked. It really has to do with the simple concept of being more pro-active in your recruiting vs. the standard re-active model described here. The blue print is available to every company, they just chose not to implement it and it's baffling why many haven't. Study any 3rd party agency and you'll find they are calling, emailing and connecting with candidates constantly. Yes, they have immediate positions to work on that drive the day, but those positions get filled either by the agency or the client. So what do they do then? Do they have a bunch of people sitting around going "well team, all our jobs are filled so let's just relax"? No, they keep dialing, because they know another position is coming and they'll need to have viable candidates at the ready when it does. Your internal teams can adapt this same strategy. Good internal teams will always have some pipeline strategy around the roles they are responsible for. There's no law that says your internal recruiters can't engage with candidates to establish rapport and understand what kinds of opportunities they may be open to in the future. Do this and delight your hiring managers when they least expect it by having suitable replacements at the ready before they are needed.
For more information on how you can get your teams up to speed with pro-active recruiting strategies, email me here: Mark@Lmrecruitinggroup.com