SmartRecruiters Blog

Talent Acquisition Teams: It’s Time to Switch Gears!

Unless you are an organization operating in the online delivery, grocery, transport or medical fields, it’s highly likely that most of your open positions have been put on hold. 

A few strategic hires will continue because they are just that…strategic.

So what does the Talent Acquisition (TA) function do now? 

Firstly – do not make the mistake that organizations did at the time of the financial crash and let your TA teams go…they have a very important job to do now!

Here’s what we are talking to our customers about here at SmartRecruiters.

Key Activities for TA Teams

1) Prepare for the “Other side”

This will pass. Plainly no one would be crazy enough to predict when, but when it does – you will need to be able to quickly restart the projects and hiring plans that have been delayed.

Make sure that:

  • You know what key positions you will need as soon as we start emerging from this crisis.
  • Keep track of the candidates that you like for these, communicate with them! 
  • Review the Workforce Plan regularly to ensure that you are fully aware of the changing business needs.

2) Train and Up-Skill

How proficient is your team in your processes and technology stack?

Recruiting teams typically need to interact with many different systems and products during their working day. (ATS, LinkedIn Recruiter, job boards, assessment systems, onboarding tools etc.)

  • Make sure everyone is up to speed with the latest product enhancements (SmartRecruiters has quarterly releases and weekly “Delights” so it is easy to miss some useful updates!)
  • Train where there are gaps (Internal/external whatever makes best sense!)
  • Ask your suppliers to help!

3) “Spring-Clean” Your Applicant Tracking System (ATS)

Even the most organized teams can struggle with the volumes of candidates that apply online via your ATS.

So if your recruiting activity is slowing – now is the time to:

  • Revisit your “Closed” and “Cancelled” jobs – are candidates in “Active steps”?
  • Review the candidates – “Reject” if appropriate, flag/tag or move to a Candidate Relationship Management (CRM) community if they look good for the future.
  • Are your hiring processes still appropriate? Should you update them?
  • Are you using “disconnected” tools? (Testing/Reference checking etc) – Could you find new suppliers to integrate with your ATS and help improve your recruiters’ efficiency?
  • Is your ATS still “valid”? Is now the time to investigate the ATS market for a more modern, integrated TA solution?

4) Protect Your Employer Brand:

How your TA team works with current and future candidates will have an enormous impact on how your organization is perceived and this will affect your employer brand for the future. Let’s make it a positive impact! 

  • Keep active candidates informed of what is happening at your organization. They will want information and direct from you is the best.
  • (Ideally) Add your “5 star” candidates to a CRM Community so that you can manage targeted, branded and specific information campaigns. Don’t let them guess what is going on! 
  • For more information on using a CRM – see The Definitive Guide to Hiring Success.
  • Be honest with the candidates.

5) Keep in Touch With Your Alumni

It’s unfortunate, but you may have had to lay some good people off – particularly if you are in industries like retail, hospitality, hotels, airline and travel.

You may want and need them back! 

Even if they have had to find other roles to support themselves and their families in the meantime, they would probably prefer to come back to you too! 

  • Find a way to keep in touch with this group.
  • Again – Ideally a CRM will enable you to easily gather their contact details and to communicate to them on an ongoing basis.
  • You can encourage them to keep you advised of any changes to their skills/availability etc.
  • If you do not have a CRM, try adding them to an unpublished job in your ATS – at least you should be able send emails to the group (depending on your ATS’s functionality)
  • Do not be tempted to add them to a spreadsheet! Think Data Privacy! 

If you would like more information about the SmartRecruiters Talent Acquisition Platform, please connect with me directly, or visit our website. Take care, and stay safe! 

Andy Cammack

Andy Cammack is a Customer Success Manager for SmartRecruiters. He is based out of London.