Recruiting in January? Your competitors probably are too! How can you beat them to the best talent?


Every January brings a peak in new vacancies here at Crossley Scott and we’re sure our competitors are experiencing the same thing! Great for Crossley Scott you might think, well, while we’re delighted to be busy, the increased competition for the elusive signatures of the best talent brings its own set of challenges.

At Crossley Scott we work in close partnership with our clients in the Clean Tech space to ensure their recruitment strategy puts them best placed to swoop up the best candidates before their competitors. Here are a few things you can do in January to differentiate yourselves from the competition and ensure those record-breaking individuals are flying your flag!

Work fast!

Whilst we wouldn’t ever rush our clients into making a hire that they’re unsure about, reducing the time-frame of your recruitment process is the number one thing you can do to beat your competitors. Of course, you need to do your due-diligence and we’re not suggesting you hire after one video call, but moving from first stage interview to second stage interview, and from final interview to paperwork, quickly will not only get you to the finish line faster, it will also demonstrate to your candidates that you don’t dilly dally – you’re the kind of organisation that ‘gets stuff done’!

Pro tip:

Plan ahead and inform candidates of the time frame before first interviews. For example, when you’re confirming interviews for Monday or Tuesday next week, why not tell every candidate to keep Friday free as this is the pre-booked date for second stage should they be successful?

Information is key

You can’t compete without knowing what your competitors are doing – assume that every candidate will be speaking to every competitor and ask them about it. The key questions to ask:

  • Who else are you meeting with?
  • When are you meeting them?
  • Is this first/second/final stage?
  • How does their position compare to ours?
  • Finally, and most importantly (assuming they’re a great candidate) “we are really impressed with you and we’re confident you could have a great long-term career here, please will you pick the phone up and speak with us before accepting anything else?”

Ask these key questions and negate any chance of a candidate surprising you by disappearing before you have chance to make your offer.

Start early

It’s a little too late for this now, but maybe next year… plan early! December is the opposite to January, most of your competitors will be waiting for the new year, so why not get the ball rolling while you’ve got the best pick! Most senior candidates have a 3 month notice period anyway so it’s unlikely they can start before Q2.

Expect counter-offers

If you know the market’s competitive, so does your candidate’s current employer and they won’t want the headache you’ve got, so counter-offers will come thick and fast! Take time to understand the candidate’s needs, wants and frustrations. While money matters, if you’re promising to be different in that one key area that really matters to your candidate, they will turn those counters down immediately.

For a detailed review of your hiring strategy, and to improve the outcome of your recruitment projects, contact Crossley Scott directly where our market specialist consultants will be happy to help.

Article Author: (Technology Recruitment Manager at )

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