What is a recruiting plan?
A recruiting plan is a document that outlines the recruiting strategies and steps a company will take when filling a position. Recruiting plans help business owners and managers focus their efforts and resources on effective hiring strategies. Modify them as needed for each new position while providing consistent methods for attracting and selecting candidates. Update your recruiting plans over time to improve your techniques as you learn from the hiring process.
The basics of recruiting plans
A recruiting plan should focus on the most important elements of connecting with and hiring the applicant who best matches your needs. Use a consistent outline to compile various information about each open position. Add details to your hiring plan as your business grows and adapts. A basic recruiting plan should include the following information:
- Job description: Create a space for the job description, including a list of qualifications and responsibilities. List budgetary restrictions, such as the salary and benefits you can offer.
- Details about filling the role: Explain how many people you plan to hire to fill the positions and whether they’ll be part-time, full-time or contract employees.
- Timeline: Create a timeline for completing each step in the hiring process, including when you will conduct interviews and the deadline for making a final decision.
- Target audience: Describe traits of your ideal candidate and the type of applicant pool you’re seeking. Consider the most important qualifications for each position and research what level of education or experience best matches the company’s needs.
- Outreach methods: List your marketing strategies for reaching out to your target audience and what resources you will use to advertise the position. Explain whether you will use job boards, social media or in-person events to attract the best candidates.
- Evaluation plan: Explain how you will evaluate candidates through phone screens, interviews or application materials. If certain parts of their applications are more important than others, clarify how you will make your final decision.
Advantages of a recruitment plan
Having a recruiting plan gives your hiring managers and HR staff a clear list of steps when a position opens, creating consistency throughout the company. Recruitment plans can help provide guidance when evaluating candidates and are easy to update when company policy changes or a new hiring strategy is introduced. Using a recruitment plan that you can share with applicants can also help attract more quality candidates by showing that your company is well-organized.
How to create a successful recruiting plan
Regardless of your company’s size, you need a good recruiting plan to track open positions and manage your workforce. Follow these steps to write a recruiting plan that suits your company’s needs.
1. Research recruitment needs
Creating a recruiting strategy plan requires extensive research across multiple areas. Research the requirements of each position and the marketing methods most effective for attracting applicants. Determine your goals for your recruiting strategy plan, such as increasing your staff numbers, diversifying your workforce, cutting new-hire costs, shortening the hiring process or boosting your employee retention. Use those goals to make decisions for your recruiting plan.
2. Forecast hiring needs
Forecast your hiring needs for the next year. Consider how your organizational structure might change and anticipate the promotions those changes might cause. Look at potential company growth and expected turnover to help you forecast for your hiring plan.
3. Update job descriptions
Review your current job descriptions to ensure they’re still accurate and reflect what you expect from the position. If you’re adding a new position or anticipate additional positions, create new job descriptions for them.
4. Set a recruiting budget
If you don’t already have a recruiting budget, set one for future hires. This helps you choose your sourcing methods wisely and plan other cost-effective recruiting steps.
5. Do a skills gap analysis
Check for gaps in skills in individual employees and your workforce as a whole with a skills gap analysis. It’s a way of researching the difference between the skills your company needs to meet its goals and the skills you already have in your workforce.
6. Choose the right tools
Determine which recruiting software tools you need to streamline your recruiting process. Applicant tracking systems are popular tools to help with job posting, screening applicants, maintaining applicant files and communicating with applicants.
7. Collaborate with others
The best recruiting plans include input from many people, including marketing associates, team leaders, recruiters and other HR professionals. By collaborating with the people who work closest with each open position, you get valuable insight into what applicants need for success and how to find someone who fits that description.
8. Establish a recruitment calendar
Look at the hiring needs for various departments to create a recruitment calendar. Anticipate when you’ll need to fill certain positions. You might decide you need a new salesperson in the fourth quarter, for example. Determining when you’ll need to hire for various positions and creating a hiring timeline for each helps you develop a recruiting calendar, which makes it easier to prepare for the recruiting and hiring process.
9. Define your candidate sourcing strategy
Choose the recruiting methods your company will use. Common options include:
- Using social media recruiting
- Posting on Indeed
- Hiring a recruitment agency
- Encouraging employee referrals
- Attending job fairs
- Networking with industry contacts
- Joining and participating in industry organizations
- Attending conferences in your field
10. Create or refine your selection process
Having a structured selection process ensures your recruitment and hiring are fair. It also helps you choose a candidate who is more likely to stay with your company and fits the requirements you’ve established for the position. Determine how many rounds and what type of interviews you’ll use. Consider assessments, such as skills tests and background checks. Every candidate should undergo the same process.
11. Establish your onboarding process
Recruitment doesn’t stop when you choose your favorite candidate. Create a thorough onboarding process to help transition your pick from candidate to employee. This might include a welcome packet upon hiring, virtual greetings, a planned program for the first day, assigning a mentor and having scheduled check-ins for the first week. A strong onboarding process can help your new hire feel comfortable and gain the tools and knowledge necessary to succeed. Write a step-by-step plan for your onboarding process.
Read more: New Hire Onboarding Checklist
12. Update and edit the recruitment plan
Your recruiting plan should be a living document that reflects the advances and growth your company makes. As your company grows, change your recruitment strategies to meet increased hiring needs. Regularly evaluate the effectiveness and relevancy of your company’s recruiting strategy plan and document any updates you make.
Frequently asked questions about recruiting plans
Why are recruiting plans important?
Recruiting plans are important because they provide a record of the most useful strategies for hiring employees at your company. They benefit both business owners and potential employees by setting up reasonable expectations for the hiring process.
Who should use a recruiting plan?
Any business owner or company personnel who manages employees should have a recruiting plan in place. Regardless of the size of your business, a recruiting plan helps keep you organized when you need to make a hiring decision.
What makes a recruiting plan effective?
A recruiting plan’s effectiveness depends on how well it helps you hire employees. Accurate research and detailed strategies are two of the most important parts of making an effective recruiting plan.