In the HR world, talent acquisition and recruitment are often used interchangeably, but the fact is that they are two different things. While one approach is tactical and is used for short-term planning, the other is more strategic and is meant for long-term manpower planning needs.
Recruitment is a linear process that involves searching for a specific candidate to fill a specific position. It is a reactive process where as soon as a position is vacated or created, a new person must be found to fill it. On the other hand, talent acquisition is geared towards building relationships, anticipating future hiring needs and creating a sustainable pool of candidates.
It is all about nurturing a talent pipeline with a long-term view.
Here are some detailed differences between recruitment and talent acquisition and where should companies really be focusing on.
Understanding The Difference Between Recruitment And Talent Acquisition…
Talent acquisition differs from vanilla recruitment with respect to the following elements:
1. Workforce Segmentation:
Talent acquisition depends on understanding the different work segments within a company, as well as the different positions within those segments. Not only do you need a thorough understanding of your company’s inner workings, but you must also know the skills, experiences, and competencies that each position requires for success.
2. Planning and Strategy:
A solid talent acquisition strategy is the outcome of a lot of planning. Unlike recruitment, talent acquisition requires a deeper look at the nature of your business and an understanding of future workplace needs.
It’s a forward-looking approach, looking through a wider lens, that takes into consideration local and global labour markets. Since talent acquisition doesn’t happen in a vacuum, the process involves more planning and strategizing.
3. Differing Approach:
The approach for recruitment is typically aggressive, aiming to cover a vacancy as soon as possible. Talent acquisition, on the other hand, requires a more thoughtful approach.
It is an efficient process, centered on the candidates and is comparatively simple, once the process has been set in place. The main aim is to look forward and lay the foundation for filling every position in the future without too much difficulty.
4. Talent Scoping and Management:
Through talent acquisition, you are basically researching and recognizing the different places where you can source candidates since top talent comes from many different places. Once you have established contact with potential candidates, you have to maintain and build those relationships.
All of this is done with the understanding that most of these candidates will not fill positions right away but rather down the line.
5. Employer Branding:
Brands are focusing more and more towards attracting talent by ensuring their company’s brand image is clear, which is also one of the important facets of talent acquisition. It involves fostering a positive image and company culture and establishing a good reputation based on quality products and services.
A solid brand attracts top candidates while giving them a look inside at what it’s like to work for your company.
6. Metrics and Analytics:
No talent acquisition strategy is complete without using key metrics to conduct proper tracking and analysis. By collecting and analyzing pertinent information, you can continuously improve your recruiting process and make better hiring decisions, ultimately improving your quality of hire.
Where Should Companies Focus Their Efforts – Recruitment or Talent Acquisition?
It is necessary to make it clear that recruitment is a subset of talent acquisition and includes sourcing, CV screening, interviews, assessment, selection, and hiring. There’s no talent acquisition without recruiting. In the highly competitive niche markets such as technology, sales, medical, legal and financial management, its impossible to not have a talent acquisition strategy as securing the best talent in these fields is full of struggles.
So when should companies focus on having a full-time talent acquisition strategy in place? Frankly, if your company is expecting above average growth in the next few quarters, then a talent acquisition strategy saves you considerable time. But the move from a recruitment strategy to a talent acquisition strategy is closely linked to two factors:
- The company’s forecast
- The level of competition for talent in the industry
Here are some reasons why you should definitely have a talent acquisition strategy in place:
1. You Invest In The Future:
The future is uncertain and more so for a company, with the regular entry and exit of employees who may want to move away for opportunities with other firms, or even your senior management which may not be with you forever.
What happens if your CFO resigns? Other employees are equally indispensable and replacing them with an external candidate may be a lengthy and costly affair, which comes with no guarantee that he or she will fit in your corporate culture.
Talent acquisition looks to ensure you are hiring people who have the skills and disposition to develop into managers and senior managers. Rather than simply getting someone into a position to do a job, you are looking to hire the future managers of your firm, who have the potential to take on new roles in the future.
2. Enjoy A Competitive Advantage:
The truth is that the people in the company make all the difference, as they are your single biggest asset. When you don’t have the right people in place, your business may struggle. You may find productivity dipping or poor decisions being made. Unmotivated staff may call in sick more frequently. That can seriously harm your ability to maneuver in a competitive market.
By contrast, when you have the right people in place, your business will gain an edge in the market. The right people will ensure that sound decisions are being made. They will also be more productive and motivated in the workplace. All of this translates to a competitive advantage in the market.
3. Save Time And Money:
Effective talent acquisition saves time and money. Most employers see recruiting as quick and easy – it gets someone into a position quickly, without too much effort. Acquiring talent can be a much more involved process. But going through an involved process can help you save resources such as training on a person who ultimately is not going to work out, will leave and send you back to going through resumes. Talent acquisition helps you save time and money over the long haul.
The bottom line is that effective tactical recruiting can help you win the battle to capture a candidate, but a good talent acquisition strategy will lead you to win the war for talent! So it’s essential that companies focus their efforts on building an effective talent acquisition strategy as it’s the best and the only long-term solution!