Chris Russell

2 min read


Recruiting Trends

Agile Recruiting On a Budget

Agile work processes may be best known because of their association with computer software development, where changing requirements, speed of development and uncertainty are the norm. 

These same principles can also be applied to recruiting.

In a business world where change is constant, recruiters need to adapt quickly. In the new world of work where job seekers, let alone top candidates, are in short supply, agile recruiting means accelerating the hiring process.

Rather than a dance that begins when a hiring manager turns in a request and ends weeks (sometimes months) later with an offer, agile requiring is a sprint. Instead of gathering resumes, screening the candidates and finally forwarding the best fits only to have to start the process over when the hiring manager rejects them, an agile process begins forwarding the best resumes as they come in. 

“The beauty of agile recruiting is not having to wait until the very end of the process to get feedback. So presenting candidate profiles / resumes to hiring managers and getting their feedback is done more often,” explains Luwam Samuel who blogs at HR Talent IQ,

Agile recruiting methods are effective for every organization, but for smaller teams and those working with tight budgets adopting agile techniques will fill jobs faster and less expensively. Smaller organizations will need to modify some of the steps an organization with greater resources will follow in developing an agile process.

Still, the fundamentals of agile recruiting are the same:

  1. Make tasks management; set schedules

Divide projects in small pieces by assigning priorities to the tasks. Agile recruiting calls these “sprints.”

Harver, a provider of volume hiring solutions, says, “By breaking projects into tasks and sprints, you can determine which parts of a recruitment project can be allocated to specific team members. The same goes for setting timeframes for each of these projects and tasks.

“This enables you to better assess which tasks to prioritize and which take the longest.”

There’s a sample sprint plan on the Harver site.

  1. Leverage your resources

You can often find great candidates just by asking. Before spending to post jobs, ask the hiring manager and the relevant employee teams for the names of potential candidates. At a small organization the personal touch is often most effective. So connect with these teams in person.

Don’t ignore the candidates in your pipeline. These are the candidates who have an interest in the company. Some may have been runners up for the very job you’re now trying to fill. So before spending on pricey job postings, check the ATS.

Because they’re targeted, specialty websites – the niche job boards – can be highly effective and less expensive.

  1. Get feedback and communicate

Earlier we said getting feedback from the hiring manager is a key part of agile recruiting. Once you begin to identify potential candidates, have the hiring manager give you a read on how good a match they are. This needs to happen early in the recruiting process, so time isn’t wasted and your recruiting effort is more productive.

It may take some prodding and training, especially for managers unfamiliar with the idea of agile recruiting. But, once they discover how much more quickly they get the people they need, they’ll be sold.

As you implement agile recruiting says Samuel, “You will see a difference not just in your relationship with hiring managers and your delivery, but also in the way your own recruitment team works together.”

However you choose to modify the basic agility recruiting principles for your needs, the essential ingredients remain the same – speed, feedback and adaptability. 

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