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4 Mistakes Recruiters Are Still Making

Analysis  |  By HR Daily Advisor  
   November 15, 2021

To stand apart from the crowd and get the attention of phenomenal potential employees, there isn’t much wiggle room for error.

This article was first published November 12, 2021, by HR Daily Advisor, a sibling publication to HealthLeaders.

Struggling to see the fruits of your recruitment efforts? As we plan out 2022 and turn the corner into the new year, there’s no better time to take stock of where your HR department is at with finding the best and brightest.

In today’s job market, recruiting is different than ever before. It’s more competitive, more intense, and more skewed towards the applicant than ever. We’ve all seen the plethora of Now Hiring signs as we drive through town, and we’ve all had the worried conversations with colleagues in our industry. That means that in order to stand apart from the crowd and get the attention of phenomenal potential employees, there isn’t much wiggle room for error. Your competitors are going after the same people, with similar salary options, and the seemingly-small bumps in the road can make a huge difference when it comes to an applicant’s decision.

Take a look of your recruitment process and do a quick audit to make sure things are running smoothly. The more streamlined you can make your process, the easier you’ll find it is to get new talent in the pipeline and fill any open positions you have available. Need some tips to start with? Here are four mistakes recruiters are still making—and how to finally call them quits.

Sending Broad, Unspecific Recruitment Emails

When you send out recruitment emails, do they sound as if they’re being sent to a real human being you’ve taken the time to research? Or are you just copy/pasting the same template you’ve been using for years? Top talent is getting slammed with recruitment information right now, and you don’t want to fall into the crowd.

It’s pretty easy to hit delete on a generic email that was clearly sent to hundreds of people. Remember that the goal in 2021 is standing out. If there’s an applicant you’re really interested in, you’re going to need to make your outreach specific. Mention why you’re reaching out to them—not just, “we thought you’d be a great fit for this role!” but details of what led you to that conclusion.

Find a connection you can highlight, like a mutual connection or interest. It’s much harder for people to delete emails from people that clearly put time into the note, and it’s going to help your company stand out as one that’s detail oriented. At the end of the day, it’s also a bit of flattery—but it works. If someone thinks you saw something special in them, it’s going to make them think twice about taking you up on your offer to talk.

Does this take more time? Yes. But if you want your recruitment efforts to pay off, you’ll consider it. After all, what will really take time is a wasteful recruitment process that doesn’t end in new hires.

Not Involving Your Entire Hiring Team in the Recruitment Process

Chances are, you aren’t the only person involved in hiring decisions. There are other people that get to interview or test new applicants. It’s essential to involve those people from the get-go. They don’t need to have their hands on every inch of the application, but even something as simple as a conversation about what kind of person they’d like to see in the role will save you time.

Otherwise, you may get in the awkward position of recruiting applicants that continuously get rejected by management. Make sure to ask the other members of the hiring team if they have any red flags, automatic disqualifiers, or star qualities they’re looking for. That will help streamline your process and lead to more effective recruitment overall.

If you want to take things a step further, run your top recruits past management before shooting them an introductory email. At some point, it’s important not to have too many cooks in the kitchen: an overload of opinions gets messy, and not everyone has the same amount of expertise or power. But recruiting doesn’t need to be a solo show.

Failing to Consider In-House Recruitment

Are you automatically turning to recruitment strategies without remembering your own employees? Oftentimes, there may be people slipping under the radar that would be a perfect fit for the position. Even if nobody’s expressed interest, you can still take some time to focus on in-house recruitment. Ask around—managers can often see who’s doing stand-out work better than employees can.

Furthermore, employees may not have a full understanding of what the new position would entail, but may actually have the perfect skillset for it. In particularly tough recruiting markets like we have now, employees who already work for your company may be the most motivated to make a new position work. After all, they already know the company culture, wouldn’t have to relocate, and are familiar with the work you do.

That can make recruitment a much easier sell, and will likely save you time and money in terms of HR onboarding. By skipping right to out-of-house recruitment, you may be overlooking valuable employees and spending resources unnecessarily.

Not Diversifying Your Recruitment Strategy

Lastly, just because you’ve been doing something a certain way for years doesn’t mean that it’s still working. In today’s world, changing technologies and political atmospheres can make the job market rocky and the recruitment efforts difficult. It’s essential to not get stuck in your ways and be open to new ideas.

One of the biggest mistakes a recruiter can make is failing to diversify their recruitment strategy. While you do want to have a system in place, that system shouldn’t rely on only one recruitment method. If all of your eggs are in one basket and that basket suddenly crumbles, you can be in a crisis zone in an instant. If you’ve always reached out to people at in-person networking events?

Try perusing LinkedIn. Rely heavily on Instagram? Implement an employee recruitment bonus. Always posting on job boards? Try picking up the phone and doing some cold calls instead. Keep your recruitment strategy multi-laned and diverse so that you’re not missing out on potential talent.

“The more streamlined you can make your process, the easier you’ll find it is to get new talent in the pipeline and fill any open positions you have available.”

HR Daily Advisor is BLR’s FREE daily source of HR tips, news, and advice. HR Daily Advisor offers free webcasts, articles, and reports on topics important to HR and compensation professionals.


In today’s job market, recruiting is more competitive than ever.

Involving others on your team in recruiting will save you time.

Look at your company's own employees and take some time to focus on in-house recruitment.

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