candidate pool

How To Improve Your Candidate Pool

The candidate pool for a good number of employers consists of those who are responding to a current job offer.

And that’s fine. The right person may very well be there.

But let’s look at expanding that candidate pool.

Permit me to give a sports analogy. Some of the best teams in baseball have two things going for them:

• They have superb talent currently on the team.

• They have put a good deal of time and effort into developing future talent.

Baseball has a unique way of doing this. Each professional team, like the New York Yankees or the Los Angeles Dodgers, have teams that play in what is called the “Minor Leagues.”

The Minor Leagues consists of three sections.


AA (pronounced “double A”)

AAA (pronounced “triple A”)

Each major league team has one team in each of those three minor leagues. And that’s where future talent is developed.

The successful teams will invest considerable time and effort into getting the “right players” into their minor league system.

You may be a baseball fan and are waiting for me to mention those few successful teams who do not put much stock in their minor league teams, but instead spend a ton of money grabbing up the best talent when it’s available.

But, this is not a baseball tip. It’s a hiring tip.

How do you create your candidate pool of future talent?

One immediate idea is to keep an eye on the online job boards for résumés that you like even if you are not hiring right now. A folder of future prospects from this source is a good thing to have.

Another idea is to cultivate your staff to reach out on any line they can — their friends, social media, chance meetings with possible prospects, etc., — and ask them to refer possible candidates to you. Get as much info as you can and include these prospects in another folder of future prospects.

Are you in touch with college placement recruiters? This could be a fruitful source for future hires. Whatever information you glean here could also go into its own folder.

How about the various professional associations? You might find some that make sense for you to join. Future talent may be located here that you may not find anywhere else. You could also encourage your staff to connect with these professional associations.

Spend a bit of time on LinkedIn and collect identities that may not be candidates for anything now, but may in the future as other job positions open up.

I mentioned having separate folders for these prospects. You can put them all into one folder, of course, but I like separating them out so you can immediately know which of your sources are paying off for you.

All in all, the idea here is to develop your candidate pool and keep good records of what you find. In addition to the above ideas, you’ll come up with ones of your own.

Could this be too time-consuming? Possibly. Then again, it may save you a bundle of time down the road because you have THAT person in your candidate pool when a new position comes open.

As the law varies in each area, please check with an attorney to ensure you are applying these tips within the law.

Our three minute video will help you hire the right people.

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