Top 7 Candidate-Focused Trends in Recruiting to Watch in 2013

Nolan Gray Staffing

Is your recruitment strategy based on your objectives, or on the needs of top performance candidates? This is a question to start asking yourself if you want to stay ahead of the trends in recruiting for 2013. According to a LinkedIn recruiting survey conducted by Qualigence International, a global recruitment research and recruiting organization, there is a renewed focus this year on attracting candidates by appealing to their needs and treating them better overall.

This survey revealed that recruiters are focused on several areas of recruiting:

  • 57 percent say they will ramp up social recruiting efforts
  • 17 percent said they will work on making more placements
  • 17 percent of recruiters are making more effort to source candidates
  • 8 percent of the recruiters polled said they want to focus on internal and external hires

Trending Problems in Recruiting this Year

Several problem areas were also highlighted in the survey, of which many recruiters are taking notice of and making more effort to correct. These problem areas that need correction across the board for recruiters are:

  • Not showing enough respect to candidates in personal interactions
  • Treating all candidate the same and not honoring their diverse talents
  • Failing to communicate updates and progress to candidates

Although there has been a shift in attitude for many recruiters, 2013 looks to be a good year for professional recruiters who can step up their game in terms of candidate-focused techniques. Several major news and government sources are already predicting that hiring will be up. The nation is in a period of slow recovery, that is for certain. However, a vast majority of business in high growth sectors, such as health care, information technology, energy, transportation, and construction will be looking for quality staffers to add to the payroll.

For a full list of these top jobs, look at what the US Department of Labor says will be the fastest growing jobs until 2020.  (Source

With all this growth and increased employment projected, many recruiters are on track for a positive 2013 if they remain candidate-focused. Yet, there are some trends to be aware of, which can help any recruiter be more productive and efficient, to increase the chance of having a profitable year. Let’s look at some of these recruitment trends to watch for.

Recruitment Industry Trends that are Candidate Focused

Social, Creative and Collaborative Recruiting – The best recruiters understand the power of using social media to source for top talent. In fact, social networking sites like LinkedIn and Facebook now make it easier than ever before to use social tools to find great candidates. Current LinkedIn demographics appear to be strongly based on career-minded users who fall into the categories that recruiters are looking for, judging from the most recent statistics provided by LinkedIn. (Source: Mashable and Recruiting Trends)

Improved Applicant Tracking Systems – There are a large number of products now available to help support applicant tracking to deeper levels of data. Not only can applicants submit their information and take assessments, but recruiters can more closely match up skillsets with actual assignments. This allows for a better overall fit for candidates, which is efficient and helps to increase longevity in a new job.

Cloud Technology Integration – Along with social recruiting and applicant tracking systems, there has been a huge shift towards recruiting on a global scale, due to the emergence of cloud technology integration. Giving candidates the ability to search for companies that offer them the greatest opportunities is one way to increase candidate-focused recruiting.

Online Training and Education – While there still exists varying methods of workforce training, more companies are turning to the convenience of online training and education. This provides on-demand access to materials that can be delivered in a consistency that aids corporate compliance and onboarding practices. Candidates have access to information that honors their learning styles.

Executive Leadership Development – As companies learn the value of retaining employees, this makes the need for recruitment planning vital to their growth. Recruiters are more focused on locating the best candidate who have leadership development capabilities, and then placing them into top level assignments where they can thrive.

Mobile Recruiting – The ability to manage a busy recruiting agency on-the-go has enabled thousands of professional recruiters and sales managers to better meet the needs of their clients and candidates today. Mobile recruiting apps launched by popular job boards and social networks now allow candidates to apply for positions using their profile information, take assessments online, and get mobile SMS alerts from hiring companies.  

Candidate Surveys and Feedback – Recruiters can send out surveys to both their clients and candidates now, to gather feedback and information that helps them become better at their roles. The most useful candidate surveys are customized and address the issues that candidates face, which helps improve communication between recruiters and their charges.

It will be interesting to see what 2013 brings for recruiters and how more candidate-focused the industry will become.

5 Best Practices for Recruiting in the Collaborative Workplace

Nolan Gray Staffing


Collaboration. It’s the key to workplace success, and studies suggest that it’s the main reason why businesses fail and top performing employees leave.  (Source: SalesForce Rypple Research, 2012)

In workplaces around the world, new trends are emerging that will soon make cubicles obsolete, stuffy board rooms disappear, and the need for entire in-house recruitment teams a remnant of the past in this decade. Recruiting and human resource tasks are combining with social networking and collaborative workplace tools at an ever-increasing rate.

In her book, What's Mine is Yours: How Collaborative Consumption Is Changing The Way We Live, Rachel Botsman, author and social innovation expert, talks about technology’s role in making collaboration possible and more cost effective for global organizations, therefore recruiting those who can adapt well to collaborative work environments is critical for business survival.



As a Recruitment or Human Resource practitioner, you keenly understand the need to stay ahead of trends in the hiring market. So too, you understand how critical it is to forecast hiring needs and skillsets for your workforce, so that your organization can withstand these trends and remain both competitive and innovative. One of the biggest workplace trends that many HR professionals are paying attention to is the need for more socially-driven and collaborative work environments that cater to the work styles of today’s top performers.

What’s in store for recruiting in the collaborative workplace?

Early in 2011, at the apex of the social media revolution, the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) released their special report called Future Insights which outlined what a panel of experts in HR and Recruitment were saying would be the workplace of the future.  One of the hottest topics that kept coming up in the report was the need for collaborative workspaces that allow communication, ideas, and innovation to flow freely across teams in a global atmosphere. Therefore, it makes sense that a best practice in recruiting should be sourcing candidates who work well in these types of environments, where diversity and cross-culture communication are the norm.

There are several different types of collaborative employees, as illustrated in this infographic from Central Desktop, an online collaboration software and project management developer for the business world. These are whom you can focus on as a recruiter.

Another report from 2012, as released by Apollo Research Institute, supports this data. In this report, Dr. Wilen-Daugenti, author of Society 3.0: How Technology Is Reshaping Education, Work and Society, provided insight into what hiring managers should be focused on when recruiting for more collaborative work styles. He advised, “You may not intend to become a solely virtual company, but expect some traditions, such as face-to-face meetings, to fade due to cost savings and convenience. And don’t let your talent pool—or business opportunities—fall behind.”

IBM, the largest IT and consulting services company, offers some additional insight into the world of the top performing companies, indicating that 30 percent of these companies provide collaborative work spaces and 40 percent provide some form of collaborative technology.

What are some best practices for recruiting in the collaborative workplace?

  • Recruit for skillsets and adaptability. Instead of merely focusing on each candidate’s past employment history and accolades, take a deeper look to discover their unique skillsets. Choose candidates who have worked with collaborative technology, are comfortable learning new things, actively engage with others on social networks, and are able to adapt well to new work environments.
  • Honor diversity in recruiting efforts. Hiring for diversity is key when staffing for a collaborative workplace. Each generation of workers is technologically savvy in certain key areas that are important to business success. Make it a point to hire from different demographics to give your workplace a fighting chance.
  • Look for lifelong learners and creatives. There are employees who do what they are assigned to, and then there are the movers and shakers. Look for these types of candidates who can inspire and motivate your current employees to greatness. Lifelong learners are well-versed in new technology and their higher sense of creativity can elevate your current projects.
  • Conduct knowledge assessments for key technology. Periodically, and throughout the recruiting process, you will want to test candidates and new hires for their skills and knowledge. This can help you to develop a workable inventory of skills and abilities that you can use for succession planning, and to identify any skillsets that are lacking, for future recruitment needs.
  • Update your work environment for collaboration. Your workplace can only be collaborative if you provide the right tools and atmosphere. Creating a workplace that encourages collaboration between teams and individuals will encourage your recruitment efforts to be geared towards candidates who fit well within your corporate culture.

Get ready for the outstanding work your new recruits will perform in this collaborative work environment. Experts say this is the dawn of a new technology renaissance that will support the expansive growth of many businesses around the world in the years to come.


More Reading

What are the Different Types of Cultures in the Workplace?

Generation Y and the Collaborative Workplace

Strategic Diversity Recruiting Process – It’s the Process That Creates Success

Global Technology Stepping up Workplace Collaboration