Human Capital Management Blog

Strategies for HCM Professionals

5 ways to deliver the recruiting pitch that candidates really want


By Maurice Fernandes, Manager of Employment Brand & Social Media at Ceridian.

Most organizations today already have a fairly well established procedure in place for recruiting. They know how to find candidates, engage with them, conduct interviews, make job offers and so on. If you’re running a large enough employer and you’ve handled this procedure enough times, you become fairly set in your ways.

But if you rely too heavily on your old, established methods of recruiting people, you might lose sight of the way times are changing and strategies are evolving. You might not be able to answer a very important question – what do the candidates themselves want?

There’s a great deal of data out there about how people today want to be recruited by potential employers. For example, LinkedIn recently published the results of its “Talent Trends 2015” study, a global initiative that included survey data from over 20,000 professionals in 29 countries. Among the organization’s findings: People begin their job searches in several different ways. While 56 percent of people explore online social networks, only 50 percent rely on traditional word of mouth, and 40 percent go directly to companies’ websites.

According to a LinkedIn blog post, knowing facts like this about people’s job hunting preferences can be incredibly helpful. Alyssa Sittig, content marketing manager at LinkedIn Talent Solutions, explained that the elite organizations are loaded with knowledge like this.

“The best recruiters know what talent wants,” Sittig declared. “They understand their candidates’ deepest motivations and aspirations and use this knowledge to keep star talent satisfied and engaged throughout the recruitment process.”

So how can you tap into candidates’ preferences and deliver the recruiting pitch that people really want? Below are five ideas:

Build strong initial connections
A person’s job options will only be as good as the connections they make, so try to connect with candidates in ways that they’ll appreciate. Social media sites, calls/emails from colleagues and simple word of mouth can all be effective ways to reach out to people.

Make a good first move
If there’s a candidate you really want, send them a note and let them know. Remember to personalize your message! Nothing says ‘spam’ like a message without the candidate’s name or incorrect salutation.  If they posted an insightful blog or shared social media content that resonated with you, make sure you reference it. Your message should be concise & hit all the important points – the specifics of the role available, why they’re a good fit and what kind of salary and perks they can expect.

Conduct the perfect interview
An interview should be a two-way street. You want to ask the candidate a lot of questions, but they should also be able to turn around and ask you anything about the open position and the company as a whole. The best interviews are educational for everyone.

Sell your company culture
You want to sell the position by emphasizing the culture at your company. Different people want different things – challenging work, professional development, a good sense of work-life balance. If you have conducted the perfect interview, you will have a clear understanding of what the candidate is looking for.  Do not misrepresent your culture for the sake of a hire.  There is nothing worse than having your ‘perfect’ candidate leave your company after 3 months because they did not fit into your company culture!

Seal the deal effectively
Why do people accept job offers, ultimately? According to LinkedIn, the deciding factor is often money, a better place to work culturally or the chance at greater influence within an organization. If you can offer any of the three, be sure to let the candidate know.


Maurice Fernandes is the Manager of Employment Brand & Social Media at Ceridian and is responsible for developing and promoting Ceridian’s employment brand across various social media channels, events, and campus recruitment activities across North America.

 Maurice is passionate about building best in class talent attraction strategies, HR technologies, recruitment marketing, employment branding, and social media. Maurice has had the privilege of speaking about recruitment topics at numerous conferences, and through media outlets such as the Globe and Mail, Maclean’s, the Canadian HR Report, and Post Media. You can follow or connect with Maurice on Twitter @MoeRecruits.

1 comment

  1. Personalizing communications is extremely important. It tells the candidate that you have done your research and truly are interested in them. Generic email blasts are typically deleted.

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