blockThis summer, I attended Midwest Recruiter Bootcamp. It was a great couple of days, with sessions covering a mix of topics like employer branding, sourcing, recruitment tools, retention, and local marketing. The event was packed with real, practical advice on everything from using LinkedIn to its fullest potential to candidate personas, HR culture development, and working with H1-B candidates.

One thing that struck me was the realization of how easy it is to forget, amid all the talk of software and funding and big sweeping changes, the little things that anyone can do right now to improve the recruiting process.

Here are seven things you can literally do in a day to improve your entire recruiting process – and they all cost next to nothing:

1. Follow Up on Referrals Promptly

SourceCon editor Shannon Pritchett shared this bright idea. Instead of implementing a complicated employee referral program, Pritchett told all her employees to give her a referral’s name and contact information; she’d take care of the rest – and give the referring employee a piece of candy.

Yup: not $100, $1000, or $10,000 – just a piece of candy.

Pritchett did this in anticipation of a large hiring surge later in the quarter. In the interim between launching the program and the time of the surge, Pritchett was able to complete background checks and credential qualified candidates. She kept the referral pipeline nurtured enough so that she had a large pool to work with when the surge came.

2. Get Your Hiring Managers to Give You Feedback Faster

Talent acquisition expert Christina Llamas was tired of hearing from her recruiters that hiring managers weren’t giving feedback quickly enough for them to capitalize on great hires. So, she bought donuts and sent out an email to let hiring managers know she had them in her office.

“I told my recruiters, ‘Be here at this time and get your feedback!’” Llamas says. They were, and they did.

Llamas figured her hiring managers would eventually catch on, but if they did, they never stopped coming.

Brandstorming Interactive Managing Principal Jim Durbin suggested leaving a soda or cup of coffee on the hiring manager’s desk with a note attached asking for feedback. When you give people something – even something small – they’ll feel obligated to respond more quickly.

3. Have the State Help You

Since positions like dentists, insurance agents, and pharmacists often require state licensure, why not go directly to the source?

HR pro Tim Sackett said that once, when he was recruiting pharmacists, he simply called a state authority and asked for a list of licensed professionals. Once he and his fellow recruiters got the list, they simply worked their way through, reaching out to qualified candidates and filling positions fast.

4. Use Your Library Card

Durbin accesses information databases via his local library. Many libraries license services like InfoUSA, Dun & Bradstreet, and others. You can simply use the massive lists compiled by these marketing firms to find who and what you need.

5. Use Lesser-Known Messaging Platforms

Many recruiters use Eventbrite and Meetup to find events to attend, but did you know you can also message fellow attendees through these platforms?

Asher Mintzer, technical recruiter with The Latitude Group, says that he often reaches out to fellow event attendees through these platforms. According to him, nearly everyone he contacts via these platforms responds. Minzter’s hypothesis is that there’s just less noise on these platforms.

6. Stop Working and Start Partying

Sourcing and recruiting can be highly overwhelming. One way to get some help is to throw a pizza party. Get as many team members and hiring managers into a room as you can, then start asking them who they know.

Such sourcing parties are a hot topic today, according to Pritchett. Llamas agrees they work.

7. Draft a Written Diversity and Inclusion Statement

A written statement will drive your diversity and inclusion program, and 26Letters CEO Caroline Karanja has a simple formula to get it done: Outline the company’s mission and vision, explain your service or product, highlight your values, and add your thoughts on diversity and inclusion at the end.

A version of this article originally appeared on Red Branch Media.

Maren Hogan is founder and CEO of Red Branch Media. You can read more of her work on Forbes, Business Insider, Entrepreneur, and her blog, Marenated.



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