From Static Candidate Databases to Supercharged Candidate Communities

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Is it possible to have a super charged candidate database, or is that an oxymoron?

Well I guess the key word is database…. it doesn’t usually lend itself to being very dynamic either by functionality or by user behaviour.

Many organisations have tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of candidates sitting in their database, that for the majority of the time they leave to wilt away whilst they continue to advertise their jobs on job boards or update unengaging ‘we have a job’ status posts on LinkedIn every time there is a new role.

So my question is, how do you make the most of the information and contacts you already have?

How do you light the fire of interest again in candidates that have applied before to your organisation, but have now moved on to do great things for other businesses?

I can hear people say… ‘we don’t have time to do that’.  So do your recruiters rather have time to trawl through 100 applications from a job board that are 98% wrong?  That’s where the time goes!

Lets do a little simple maths.

Says you have 100,000 candidates sitting in your database + 800 who are following your company on LinkedIn + you have 300 employees in your organisation.

Now let’s also say that you build a platform where you can engage with candidate on a regular basis (yes of course I am talking about Social Recruiting).

Let’s say 10% of the people who have applied to your business before, those who follow you on LinkedIn and those in your business become engaged community members ~ remember you’ve got to start somewhere.

If we only had 10% take up, then you would start your community with 1,083 people Liking your page, following you on Twitter or joining in on which ever platform you’ve discovered your candidates like to be.


By starting to bring your database candidates into an active forum you can start to harness some of the power of community, ie: their communities, so even if the person that applied may not be 100% suitable for the role, who knows who they may know that will see their activity on your page.   I’m part of a number of online communities where the content and discussion is of interest to me.  There are also regular updates on jobs from many organisations based on the people in my community that get shared on a regular basis.   Now whilst I may not be interested, I have a lot of connections that may be interested in the roles that I’m seeing on a regular basis.

We need to start utilising what we have, developing relationships and building on that instead of having a throw away mentality.

One of the biggest issues that I hear from Recruitment Managers, is that their teams don’t have time to source the right candidates.

So my question is, are we being smart with how we are engaging with applicants both now, past applicants and building platforms for future applicants, so that they do part of the work for us?

Instead of just rejecting someone and being done with it, do we think about how we build relationships for the future?

Where are the candidates that applied for that marketing role 4 years ago? are they now senior, highly skilled talent that you would be interested in?

Like the rest of the world, when it comes to sustainability, the recruitment industry and recruitment teams need to work smarter not harder to use what we have.

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