5 Effective Strategies for High-Volume Recruitment
Sourcing for one backend developer is one thing. But sourcing for 20 is something else entirely.
If you've ever been tasked with recruiting for a particular role at a high volume, you know these processes need to be run a little differently, but you might be wondering how to optimize your efforts further. And if you've never done high-volume recruitment before, then you're in the right place.
In this article, we'll give our tried-and-true tips for volume recruiting (e.g., bulk hiring) so you can juggle dozens of candidates and sustain quality without blinking an eye.
The Challenge with High-Volume Recruiting
A key characteristic of bulk hiring comes down to the seniority and complexity of the role. Typically, volume hiring deals with entry-level positions that are low in complexity for your organization. For example, say a company has one senior resource for every five juniors. Technically, you'll need to handle junior profiles at 5x the rate of seniors - and given the frequency of recruiting for those more junior profiles, your team likely has the ideal candidate profile down to a tee.
But that's not to say that there isn't a whole suite of other challenges that come with high-volume recruitment. Just because a role isn't particularly "complex" or "senior" doesn't mean hitting your hiring targets is a walk in the park. In fact, you're likely to face the following challenges when recruiting in bulk:
- Sifting through applicants. Dozens, hundreds, or thousands of people might apply for these roles. So even though you don't have to spend a ton of effort sourcing, you will spend a lot of time and resources reviewing and responding to applicants. Not to mention that the best talent out there might not have applied, so you'll still want to find the time to source and engage top talent.
- Poor candidate experience. Quantity shouldn't come at the cost of quality, but unfortunately, striking this balance becomes trickier with higher volumes. You have more logistics to deal with, more feedback to give, and more decisions to make, which can take its toll on candidate experience.
- Time management. Although the roles might not be overly complex, the process will be. Mass hiring means mass interviews, feedback cycles, emails, and prep work. Finding the time to balance it all while staying focused and on track is no small feat.
- Decrease in quality of hire. Naturally, as processes become more complex and the quantity of applicants increases, quality can drop quickly (if you don't prioritize it). It can be tempting to cut corners to meet targets and deadlines, but your team will feel the repercussions of those actions tenfold in the years to come.
5 Strategies for High-Volume Recruiting
Think holistically about team composition
Before you jump right into sourcing, spend a little time re-evaluating the roles' seniority. Suppose you are recruiting for mid-senior level profiles at scale. In that case, it will likely be challenging to get the volume of applicants you need just from a single job ad and headhunting alone - which means it will probably take longer than expected to meet your volume targets. Start by asking yourself if you actually need 10 mid-senior profiles to reach your business goals or can get away with hiring 3-4 seniors who can get the 6-7 mids/juniors up to speed. In other words, think about how you can design a team efficiently rather than hiring for the sake of hiring.
As mentioned, time management can be tricky to navigate when recruiting at volume. Coordinating interviews, gathering feedback from hiring managers en masse, and maintaining a positive candidate experience is a symphony that needs perfect harmony. If you're not intentional about time management, calendars will be filled to the brim, hiring managers won't have time to give feedback, and nobody will be properly prepared for interviews. Not to mention that everyone's social battery will run on empty. So, before starting a project, estimate how many interviews you'll need to conduct to hit the hiring target. Then, be clear with your hiring managers about how many hours that translates to, and over what period. This ensures everyone is prepared, calendars have breathing room, and expectations are realistic.
Consider early-stage assessment
To streamline your process even further, consider incorporating early-stage assessments. Like "normal" assessments, these could be tests or challenges that test for fit. However, the difference is that you include the assessment tool much earlier in the process (e.g., before the screening call) so that you filter out candidates who don't meet the basic requirements. This saves you time and provides candidates with a better understanding of the role's demands before they invest too much time.
Your recruitment team should always aim to standardize documentation wherever possible since it keeps everyone aligned, answers FAQs, and increases transparency toward candidates. This is even more true in high-volume recruitment since you're filling the same role again and again. Therefore, it should be straightforward to standardize the information you provide to hiring managers and candidates. These "fact packs" of documentation help clarify interview stages, points of contact, FAQs, communication guidelines, and feedback culture.
Organize interview days
It can be difficult for hiring managers to jump in and out of interviews all day alongside their day-to-day tasks. Even though they might have time in their calendars to do so, the constant context-switching will eventually take its toll. To help counteract this, consider organizing batch recruitment days. This involves bringing pre-screened and qualified candidates to a one-day recruitment event that combines interviews and case exercises. By the end of the day, hiring managers will have met the candidates, assessed their skills and fit, and might even be able to decide who to hire that very day!
Ask for help
High-volume recruiting can be challenging. It can be draining to search for, engage with, and review the same profiles day in and day out. Not to mention that if you don't find the role particularly interesting, it can quickly get monotonous and somewhat demotivating for you and your team. If your talent team is large enough, don't be afraid to ask for help or request a change in a task for a short while. If your talent team is already stretched thin on resources, you can always consider bringing in a partner like Amby to help you meet your hiring targets while you focus on more varied, strategic projects.
In the whirlwind world of high-volume recruitment, we hope you can lean on these strategies to navigate the process with quality, efficiency, and precision.
Growth Marketing Manager at Amby, who loves writing about the tech, venture capital, and people space.LinkedIn