Hiring and recruiting is a critical challenge in 2020. Nearly one-third of the 700-plus respondents to XpertHR’s fourth annual survey named finding top talent as a significant hurdle. Among this group, 51% said they are “extremely challenged” in finding quality candidates — more than twice as many who said the same thing just two years ago.

Not surprisingly, our nation’s robust economy has created a candidate-driven market. In 2009, the number of unemployed people per job opening was 6.6, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In 2019, it was 0.9.

The bottom line is that good people are hard to find. That means this year is not only an opportune time for HR leaders to rethink their recruitment strategies, but it is also imperative that they do so.

Finding People Who Haven’t Found You

Finding the best talent — individuals whose skills fit the job at hand and who are aligned with your company’s mission — starts with candidate sourcing. At a minimum, sourcing candidates, whether in-house or through a recruitment firm, may involve posting positions online, performing keyword searches on social media platforms and returning to your database of past applicants. According to a Lever study, sourced candidates account for as many as one-third of all hires, the second most common origin of hire after direct applicants.

But the best talent often is already happily employed, not reading job boards or employment ads. So, it’s more important than ever to thoughtfully, creatively approach these potential candidates to build a quality jobs pipeline.