If you have a human resources department, an employment specialist will handle the recruitment and selection process for your organization. A highly qualified specialist can conduct full-cycle recruiting, handling every step of the hiring process from initial notice of the vacancy to processing a newly hired employee's paperwork. Best practices pertaining to recruitment and selection include a collection of techniques proved successful in the human resources professional community. If you do not have a human resources department, consider engaging the services of a staffing agency qualified to conduct full-cycle recruiting.

Sourcing Candidates

Sourcing candidates means your employment specialist utilizes her professional contacts, creativity and comprehensive knowledge of the vacant position to identify qualified applicants for your company. The employment specialist or the staffing agency to which you outsource this function narrows down applicants to a select number of candidates and sends that list to your company. Sourcing occurs at trade shows, seminars and conventions and via posting online to career or social networking sites. Many job announcements are made through word-of-mouth. This is a very effective method for sourcing applicants.

Screening & Reviewing Applications

The introduction of Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) has changed the way recruiters and employment specialists do business. Hard copy applications are almost obsolete, now replaced with online application processes that software developers fine-tuned for the human resources field. Employment specialists review applicant qualifications, often searching for keywords identical or similar to those in the job vacancy announcement. This minimizes the time spent thumbing through paper applications and enables recruiters to narrow the list of candidates to a manageable number of people whose resumes suggest they are qualified for the job.

Preliminary Phone Interview

Employment specialists conduct preliminary phone interviews with applicants. The purpose of a telephone interview is to obtain more information about the applicant, ask questions related to work history and verify the accuracy of information on his resume. Some employment specialists with a substantial amount of experience also might ask industry-specific questions. The applicant has an opportunity to ask questions, too. If the preliminary interview is fruitful, the recruiter forwards the application to the hiring manager. This step in the process saves time in face-to-face interviews--the recruiter can discern whether the applicant has requisite skills and qualification before inviting him to the office for a face-to-face interview. Gleaning a significant amount of information about the applicant's work history is quite possible in a 30-minute telephone interview.

Pre-Employment Processes

After the hiring manager conducts a face-to-face interview, there may be another round of interviews with the same hiring manager, a panel of her colleagues or a higher-level colleague. Multiple interviews allow you to gather another set of perspectives about candidates. Once the hiring decision is final and negotiations about the position are complete, the employment specialist prepares an employment offer letter, which contains salary information, length or conditions of employment and hire date. The candidate then produces documentation that verifies his work eligibility, completes any licensing applications or authorizations for background investigation. The division of labor among the human resources department, the hiring manager and others involved in the hiring process results in an efficient recruitment model.


Development Dimensions International produced a study that describes this human resources function: "Recruitment is the process of identifying and attracting potential candidates from within and outside an organization to begin evaluating them for future employment." You want your organization's recruitment and selection process to be as effective and efficient as DDI's description is succinct.