By Tess Taylor

Your business needs good people in order to thrive and grow. This is where a smart recruitment strategy comes into play. Planning the people aspects of your business can help you create the “bigger picture,” helping you to stay on top of industry trends and maintaining skill sets to manage the work that filters in.

No matter how simple recruiting seems to you as a concept, the stark reality is that it’s a complicated process that few business owners are actually prepared for. From knowing the best sources for finding quality candidates and managing the interview process to screening individuals to make sure they have solid backgrounds, your business will ultimately benefit if you have a plan of action.

Here are some important to-dos that can make recruiting easier and more effective for business; ultimately giving you a greater return on investment.

1. Have a Solid Business Brand

In an ever-competitive job market, attracting the best future hires means having a well-known corporate brand. Why is this an important to-do? If your business wants to stay competitive, you will need to have a supply of skilled candidates from which to recruit from. Developing a solid brand means that the most career-minded candidates will be looking for opportunities to come work for you.  Your brand is what goes before you and helps to establish your business as an employer of choice.

2. Develop a Referral Program

One of the ways you can boost your recruiting efforts in the coming year is to employ a referral program. According to multiple research sources, the quality and quantity of new hires is evidenced by well-managed employee referral programs. Employee referrals from internal sources are generally those that are more closely matched with the corporate culture and the work to be performed. Why? Because good people know other good people.

3. Create a Passive Talent Pool

Another important must do for your business recruitment success is to create a talent pool made up of not only active job seekers, but potential candidates who are in their mid-level range of skills and experience. These are professionals who can bring much to the table and become your future leadership team. Use professional networks and referrals to grow this passive talent pool. Work with other recruiters to share databases of passive candidates who fit the bill.

4. Use Social Networks Well

In addition to passive candidate talent pools, another to-do that can benefit your recruiting efforts is the use of social networks. Use social networks to connect with candidates online. Create social networking groups as a way to build a community of potential candidates. Add valuable content to further your corporate branding and make you stand out from other companies in your industry. You will want to have someone on your team take responsibility for creating an authentic “voice” of your company with a planned action shared by recruiting and marketing on social networks.

5. Be a Positive Part of the Community

Every company should have a way of building up the local economy through partnerships with higher educational institutions and giving back to the community through sponsorships. It’s part of the responsibility of being in business. Connect with local high schools to sponsor their sports programs and while you are at it, find out what career development programs are in place to educate and inspire the next generation of workers. Get in touch with colleges in your area and support their initiatives to develop future leaders. Start implementing intern programs to bring in young minds to your company. Commit to being a positive impact on the local economy and the culture.

6. Think Globally in Recruitment

A to-do that every leading organization will want to consider is that the way we do business today is vastly different than just ten years ago. Not only has technology connected people from around the world, but there is a much broader range of skills and talents to be found when thinking in these terms. In some cases, recruiting for certain types of jobs or skill sets can be better managed when outsourcing or using independent contractors. Keep critical skills and leaders in-house, but repetitive or routine tasks may be best served by hiring free agents who offer complimentary services.

By using the above to-dos in your business recruitment efforts, you can begin to streamline your efforts to hire good people. Remember that there are professional employer organizations, HR consulting firms, and temporary staffing agencies that offer a wide range of recruitment solutions to support your business too.  Tap into all of the business resources and technology that is available to you, but do so with a goal in mind. These are just some of the ways you can get more from your human capital and experience a greater recruitment return on investment.