5 ways to develop successful talent communities

It’s no surprise to talent leaders that qualified candidates are in short supply. According to Randstad Sourceright’s 2019 Talent Trends research, 76% of human capital leaders say that talent scarcity is a chronic concern. In response, many (73%) employers are investing in talent communities – groups of skilled candidates from which they can hire engaged and interested talent quickly.

These communities can include individuals who are seeking either permanent or contingent work, and enable employers access to curated and nurtured skilled talent who have expressed interest in their organizations or with whom they already have an existing relationship. This means faster access and lower talent-acquisition costs over time and creating the kind of agility all businesses seek, without compromising talent quality.

So, if you haven’t explored building your own talent communities, why are you still waiting?

Why you should invest in talent communities

Although talent communities have existed for years, they are becoming more common as employers face talent scarcity and need to scale quickly to meet shifting demands. A company may use talent communities to keep highly skilled candidates who weren’t offered positions (often called “silver medalists”) engaged for future opportunities.

The same could be said for access to re-deployable talent, interns or retirees. Public or private talent communities can also be used to source highly qualified freelancers. These talent communities help to reduce overall talent-acquisition costs by starting the sourcing effort with a pool of pre-screened candidates.

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Talent communities play a crucial role in engaging active and passive candidates alike. Relationships developed through the talent community can help to strengthen the company’s employer brand and build a following.

Talent communities can even connect you with the next generation of great talent and help you build a pipeline for the future. One study found that one-third of graduates and students who had accepted a position had already been part of a talent community. The results also show that individuals 22 years old or younger are 27 percent more likely to join a talent community than their peers.

Still, effectively managing talent communities can be labor-intensive and requires a level of expertise. For businesses without the time or resources to create their own private talent communities, open talent communities offer a viable solution. Various forums dedicated to specific skill sets or industries, such as Stack Overflow or IEEE, for example, can be used to find talent with the needed skills and experience.

5 ways to develop successful talent communities

As the competition for talent grows, talent communities are clearly an effective way to achieve a competitive recruiting advantage. And with the help of innovative technologies to support your efforts, you have more reasons than ever to develop your own. Here are five ways that you can help set your talent communities up for success:

  1. Get feedback from candidates. It’s always important to followup with candidates who aren’t selected. When you ask about their interest in other positions or work arrangements, you can get a sense for how they might align with new opportunities.
  2. Attract all talent. To be most effective, you’ll want to segment your community based on work or role type. Be sure to create strategies for attracting permanent and flexible talent alike. You can ask talent that visits your career site for permanent positions whether they are also interested in flexible work, for example.
  3. Keep in touch. With regular, consistent communications, you can keep the members of your talent community interested and engaged with your company. Campaigns that provide interesting information about your company or culture, for example, can help further nurture the talent.
  4. Leverage referrals. A strong talent community can go beyond individual candidates to their networks. Invest in a strong referral process to amplify your reach to new talent.
  5. Personalize your communications. The individuals in your talent community will have different skills, interests and career goals. Make sure you account for these differences with robust content-marketing plans to develop personalized communications.
JoAnne Estrada

JoAnne Estrada
JoAnne Estrada is global head of contingent workforce solutions for Randstad Sourceright's Talent Innovation Center. She can be reached at joanne.estrada (at) randstadsourceright (dot) com.

JoAnne Estrada

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