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Recruitment vs. Talent Acquisition: Which Should You Choose?

By James Yorke

2 Mar 2023 · 3 min read

Recruitment vs. Talent Acquisition: Which Should You Choose?

Hiring the right people for your organisation is crucial to the success of your business. When you build a workforce filled with qualified, talented, and dedicated individuals, you can have the resources that allow you to get closer to achieving your business goals.

However, finding the right talent and encouraging them to join your company is challenging. You must create a strategy or take help from talent management software to manage your recruitment process. 

Recruitment professionals achieve this through two main methods: recruitment and talent acquisition. Although these terms might seem synonymous to an untrained eye, they are two strategies requiring different approaches.

In this article, we'll talk about recruitment vs talent acquisition. We'll also delve into the steps and efforts that go into these processes.

What is recruitment?

Recruitment refers to searching for and evaluating candidates and finding one or a few qualified enough to fill a vacant position in your company. Its main goal is to find someone who can immediately fill in an open position to prevent any problems with the company's operations.

This process usually involves a specific, pre-defined procedure and rarely includes additional steps. Recruitment is only initiated when a company expands or experiences staff turnover.

What is talent acquisition?

Talent acquisition is the process of actively searching for qualified talents to hire for a specific position in your company to improve your workforce continuously. It is more focused on finding talented candidates who will be the best fit for the organisation.

Unlike recruitment, talent acquisition involves a more flexible and dynamic approach to hiring talents. Your recruitment team also needs a deeper understanding of your company's long-term goals to recruit employees for your business.

What is the main difference between recruitment and talent acquisition?

Based on the definitions above, the main difference between recruitment and talent acquisition is that the latter is a more proactive approach to hiring. Talent acquisition aims to find and hire candidates to secure the company's workforce even before an expansion or staff turnover. Since the need is manageable, hiring professionals can take their time assessing every talent and ensuring they can contribute to the company's long-term goals.

On the other hand, recruitment is a reaction to an employee resignation or company expansion. Since the company's requirement for a new employee is immediate, the recruitment process is a rigid procedure that should be completed within a few days or weeks.

This means that recruitment professionals only have a little time to evaluate a candidate fully and might hire an individual if they fit the qualifications in the job listing. They might even use recruitment automation software to expedite the process and find a qualified individual as soon as possible.

However, you must know that recruitment can also be a subset of talent acquisition. Once your recruitment team finds a qualified candidate who can play a huge part in your company's future successes, they need to get into the recruitment process to convince the individual to join your organisation.

Recruitment vs talent acquisition strategies

Aside from the differences in the primary approach between recruitment and talent acquisition, these processes also use various methods and strategies.

Here are some of them:

Recruitment strategies

Professionals create recruitment strategies to source and encourage qualified individuals to join their company. Some of the most common methods recruitment professionals use are the following:

Internal recruitment

Recruiting internally is an excellent way to save money on the recruitment process. Instead of spending your resources on a recruitment platform, online job boards, or recruitment agencies, you can inform your existing employees of an opening in your organisation and encourage them to apply.

Providing new career opportunities is also a great way to empower your employees. When they know they have a progression path within your company, they are more likely to be motivated and stay with your organisation.

External recruitment

Another recruitment strategy you can try to find qualified individuals for an opening in your company is external hiring. This method allows you to source candidates from outside your organisation, giving you a wider selection.

However, it would be best to have HR recruitment software to properly track several recruitment KPIs to ensure that your strategy is working and to determine room for improvement.

Social media recruitment

As companies start hiring individuals from the younger generation, they are more likely to try to reach out to these candidates where they spend most of their time: social media. Recruiting through social media allows you to get in touch with candidates easily.

You can also use Facebook or LinkedIn marketing to show potential candidates why they should consider applying to your company. Publishing content that showcases your company culture can help you attract top talent.

Talent acquisition strategies

You need an effective talent acquisition strategy to find highly qualified individuals who can help your company achieve its future successes. Here are some of the methods you should consider trying:

Employer branding

Most recruitment professionals agree that employer branding plays a significant role in hiring. If you want to attract top talents in your industry easily, you should start working on your brand as an employer. By establishing yourself as a caring company, you can encourage qualified individuals to join your organisation more.

Talented freelancers

Another way to acquire talent for your organisation is to look for freelancers in your industry. By selling the benefits of becoming an employee in your company, you can convince these talented individuals to help you reach your goals and bring your business closer to success.

Choosing between recruitment and talent acquisition

Deciding between the two hiring processes discussed above will depend on your business's current needs. If you have a vacancy that needs to be filled immediately, you must go with recruitment. On the other hand, if you want to be proactive and prepare for your organisation's future, talent acquisition is the way to go.

As long as you choose the proper hiring process and employ the different methods that go with it, you can sustain your workforce and ensure you have talented individuals in your team.

What is the main difference between recruitment and talent acquisition?

Recruitment is a process of filling job vacancies, while talent acquisition is a more strategic and long-term approach to identifying and attracting high-quality candidates who can bring value to the organisation.

Is talent acquisition higher than a recruiter?

Talent acquisition and a recruiter are two different roles with different responsibilities, and it's inaccurate to say that one is higher than the other.

Recruiters are typically responsible for filling job vacancies by sourcing and screening candidates, coordinating interviews, and making job offers. They often work on a job-by-job basis and focus on filling current openings.

On the other hand, talent acquisition professionals take a more strategic and long-term approach to identifying and attract high-quality candidates who can bring value to the organization. They focus on building relationships with potential candidates, creating an employer brand, and developing a talent pipeline to ensure the availability of skilled professionals for future positions.

While both roles are important in the hiring process, talent acquisition can be seen as a higher-level function that involves more strategic planning and relationship-building. However, the level of seniority and responsibility in either role can vary depending on the organization and the specific job requirements.

How does technology impact recruitment and talent acquisition?

Technology has significantly impacted recruitment and talent acquisition, with many companies using tools such as applicant tracking systems, social media, and online job boards to streamline the hiring process and reach a wider pool of candidates.

Can recruitment and talent acquisition be outsourced?

Yes, recruitment and talent acquisition can be outsourced to third-party providers specialising in these areas. This can be particularly useful for companies who do not have the in-house resources or expertise to manage the hiring process effectively.

By James Yorke

2 Mar 2023 · 3 min read


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