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Nontraditional Talent Pools & How to Tap Into Them

Nontraditional Talent Pools & How To Tap Into Them

No matter which way you look at it, recruiting is hard work – especially in 2019. The jobs are plenty, the job seekers are few, and diversity is top of mind at many organizations. So it’s no surprise that gaining traction with potential candidates requires careful thought combined with a whole lot of action. 

As a result, recruiters need to revisit their strategies, expand their reach, and tap into new or otherwise nontraditional talent pools. Of course, adding this to your current workload might feel like a second job, but thankfully, there are programs and tools that help facilitate the process. Here are three to consider adding to your existing toolkit:

Returnship programs

‘Nontraditional’ applies to a wide variety of job seekers, including those out of the workforce for an extended period. Maybe they served in the military, spent a few years taking care of a loved one, or decided to pursue an advanced degree full-time. No matter the reason, a returnship offers these people the opportunity to slide back into the world of work.

Felicia Fleitman, who manages strategic pipelines at Verisk, a data analytics company, explains the returnship experience as “an intern program for mid-level professionals returning to work.” Recognizing that returnees need help in specific areas, Verisk provides access to training, development, coaching, and mentorship resources designed to restart their career and get them up to speed. Sometimes this leads to a job offer. Sometimes their return isn’t the right fit – and that’s OK too.  

In terms of recruiting, adding a returnship program provides direct access to countless candidates, who might go overlooked in an ATS. At the same time, you’re giving returnees the chance to get their confidence back while contributing to your organization. A win-win, all around. 

Video interviewing

Maybe you’re not in a position to implement a new program, such as returnship. Luckily, there are other ways to tap into nontraditional talent without building something from scratch. For a quick win, take a look at some of your most time-intensive recruitment processes. The administrative workload associated with scheduling and screening candidates is probably not the best use of your recruiters’ time. That workload, coupled with pressure to move fast, forces recruiters to stick with what they know and avoid looking outside the traditional mold. 

With a tool like video interviewing to automate and streamline, recruiters are able to review more candidates in less time, while continuing to collaborate with hiring managers and other stakeholders. 

As far as nontraditional talent goes, this technology enables all types of candidates to interview when and where they’re able to – rather than simply at the behest of the organization. Be it pre-recorded or live, video interviewing emphasizes convenience – an important factor in a tight job market, especially with so many job seekers either actively employed or else unavailable during office hours. Video interviewing is also mobile friendly, allowing you to reach candidates in different cities, looking to relocate, or those with mobility issues who can’t necessarily travel with ease. With this type of solution in place, you’re able to cast a wider net with fewer strings attached. 

Soft skills assessment

When it comes to finding and engaging new talent, you might still need to think outside the box – or in this case, your industry. Sure, it’s great when candidates fall into your lap having the exact resume and experience you’re looking for. But how often does that happen in 2019? Instead of limiting your search to candidates who’ve done the job before, you can use assessments to find people with transferrable skills that will work well in your industry. 

Take sales, for example. The ability to sell isn’t contingent on years of experience in a sales position. It’s about having the soft skills and behavioral traits necessary to be productive. Using a pre-hire assessment, you can identify candidates with the highest potential for success, even if their background doesn’t correspond exactly. In fact, nontraditional talent may even outperform other hires because they’re a stronger match – and you won’t know until you assess. 

It’s tough to say if and when the job market will change, but for now, it’s a candidate’s game and recruiters need to play through. To get candidates from those nontraditional talent pools you haven’t recruited from before, you need to shore up your resources and dive in head first. 

Written by Greg Moran,
CEO of OutMatch

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