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  • Jordan Norris

Advert-only Recruitment Strategies are a bad idea...

Updated: Dec 10, 2020

“I'm going to see how the advert does for the next couple of weeks before using recruiters”

I speak with 10’s of Ruby Developers and hiring managers every day and from what I see (specifically within the Ruby community) the demand is still higher than supply, certainly on the permanent side of things.

Despite this, I've definitely seen an increase in businesses trying to hire Ruby skills via the direct route. On the face of it, this seems like a cheaper option, the cost of an advert sounds more appealing than a fee, of course, I’m not an idiot, but it’s not without its challenges and there are certainly no guarantees you’ll find the best person for the job.

The challenges you might see with the direct adverts include:

A high number of incorrect applicants, you’ll get bombarded because you’ve used words like “remote” coupled with a variety of nice to have languages, Ruby, Javascript, Go, Python, React... Do you have time to reply to all of these, with specific feedback? If not, your brand and reputation are at risk…

The candidate won’t have researched your business, candidates hit apply to multiple jobs all at once based on keyword searches. I have advertised a lot and regularly I’d call a Developer within an hour of receiving the application and he or she wouldn’t remember the advert or recognise the company name, however, they would admit to applying to “a few jobs” over lunch...

You might pay more - If a good candidate applies to your job, it’s very likely they will have applied to multiple others. If you like their CV and profile, so will 6 other Ruby hiring managers. In my experience, most hiring managers would like a Developer to join their company with a genuine interest in the business, vision, values and product not because you pay the most. Don’t let yourself get into a dutch auction at offer stage. 

You won’t see a single passive candidate. Many of the best candidates aren’t actively looking for a new role, given the current climate it probably feels safer to sit tight for now but so many will consider a new role if it’s sold to them correctly - Story, Vision, Values, Learning, Product, People - For even the best copywriters, it’s very difficult to really tap into someone’s unconscious motivations via an advert.

So, I’m not saying never advertise, you may get lucky and find the perfect Ruby Developer for your business but if hiring the right person at the right time with the right motivations is really very important then consider the risks, challenges, time and effort that come with an advert-only strategy.

Agree? Disagree? Either way, I'd love to hear from you. Jordan@grittt.com / 07858973473

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