Just as the health of your sales pipeline drives the success of revenue, the health of your talent pipeline drives the success of your talent management. At a rudimentary level, a talent pipeline is a pool of candidates who are (hopefully) qualified and already on hand to assume open positions that have been newly created or vacated. In terms of recruiting philosophy, a plump talent pipeline allows your recruitment efforts to function proactively instead of reactively.
“You can tell if your pipeline is failing if more than 50% of your new hires come from sourcing that began after a job opening occurred,” said Dr. John Sullivan on ERE.
Think about that, and then ask your team: for the last 10 roles we hired for, how many of the interviews came from people who were already in your talent pipeline? And how many were sourced after the job opening occurred?
A sustainable recruiting department needs to constantly be thinking bigger than their next hire.
And if you’re a guilty party who needs to allocate more resources to scaling your talent pipeline, start by taking a gander at these 10 specific talent pools, all of which are easy to access and can quickly fatten your talent pipeline:
- Past Applicants
Over time most organizations hire again and again for similar roles, thus creating a lot of relevant past applicants who could be future candidates as well – don’t let that go to waste. Invite that talent pool to re-apply, and for the top candidates that got away, pick up the phone or write them a personal email about why they should reconsider working for your organization.
- Your Customers
The customers who give the most feedback (check your support tickets and customer support emails) are often great candidates, and at the very least, they are clearly already spending time investing in your products or services. If you have an existing customer community (e.g. a newsletter communication or forum), see if they are interested in opting into your talent pipeline. If they’re interested in what you’re building, they should be made aware of what help you need to build it.
- Your Social Media Community
Each member of your company’s social media audience – in one way or another – has opted into your approach to the world. While their skills may be harder to measure, this talent pool is massive – and inexpensive to tap. Look at what they retweet and what posts of yours they like; you can uncover in what way certain people care about what you care about. A social media audience offers a company a direct line of communication it cannot waste.
- Your Current Employees
To keep top talent, your need to offer them a career path. For every single employee in your organization, you should know their next step, i.e. what role could each employee move into? By always knowing who could be ready for role x, when role x opens up, an internal candidate pipeline will exist.
- Your “Give First” Blog
Some companies create great blogs that touch on bigger issues than how their corporation is making money. Examples, such as Creator by WeWork, allow a company to build a community around a purpose that aligns with the company but is bigger than the company. This community can infuse many purpose-driven candidates into your talent pipeline.
- The Resume Database
Wouldn’t it be nice to add 17 million candidates to your talent pipeline? By leveraging a resume database, like the MightyRecruiter resume database, you can ensure volume in your talent pipeline and tap candidates outside of your inner circle. Using our simple filters and Boolean search, you can find great talent with the relevant skill sets and experiences, and then invite them to apply when a new opportunity surfaces.
- Your Interns
When people think of the next generation of their workforce, the intern comes to mind. While I don’t want to overhype the intern pool as the only source of a talent pipeline, it is an essential source for your talent pipeline. When sourcing from your interns, remember it’s not just current interns who could make great hires. The last few seasonal interns are all familiar with your organization, and in the interim they may have developed the skills to fill a more significant role.
- Your Alumni
On the beauty of the boomerang (those former employees who’ve left your organization but are willing to return)! The boomerang hire can greatly reduce your onboarding time, and frankly, they know what they’re getting. Many people leave companies because of their own timing and opportunity, not because of ill will toward the company. As most roles open, do not forget to create a touchpoint with alumni.
- Business Built on Your Business
What businesses depend on your business? In the tech industry, this can be as simple as who is using your API or who is building on code you may have open sourced? So for the tech industry, talent pipeline can extend to who is calling your API often and who is forking your repo on GitHub. Outside of the tech industry, consider what businesses are vertically and horizontally integrated with you; those people are already working with you (and they just may be willing to work for you).
- Your Charitable Work
Does your company give back to the local community? Everyone who attends your volunteering events and anyone who partners with you on your charitable work should be added to your talent pool. People that give back in similar ways have a great potential to build something awesome together in the workplace.
By tapping into these 10 candidate destinations, you can stimulate your talent pipeline, which eases the bottleneck on sourcing talent across the entire company. But there are definitely more way to grow your talent pipeline. Would be great to hear from you! Keep the conversation going by mentioning @MightyRecruiter on Twitter with your expertise on scaling a talent pipeline.