HR Challenges in Recruitment


Identifying and recruiting highly qualified and talented applicants for jobs is a core function of strategic human resources. However, HR professionals face a few key challenges in meeting company employee needs, including developing a diverse applicant pool, finding capable workers, recognizing legal hurdles and targeting the right people.

Diverse Applicant Pools

A 2014 report from the Society of Human Resources Management indicated that escalated globalization has caused companies to focus on finding diverse workforces. A practical issue for some companies is the tendency of managers to hire people similar to them. Thus, a company that doesn't have a lot of diversity may struggle to adapt to a diverse community unless it makes this an intentional recruitment strategy.

Finding Capable Workers

In some industries, the demand for talented workers far exceeds the available supply. A January 2014 AdWeek article cited a major talent gap in digital marketing, especially in higher-level positions.

Such gaps create two core problems for companies. One is the simple reality that it is hard to fill important positions when you can't find capable people. The result is unfilled positions or jobs filled with less-than-optimal workers. The other core problem is that companies have to pay high compensation to attract top performers when a talent gap exists.

Overcoming Legal Hurdles

Laws designed to protect applicants and workers against unfair hiring practices also impede company HR recruitment practices. Informal interview processes are uncommon as of 2015 because companies feel pressure to use more structured, consistent screening processes to protect against claims of discrimination.

The Fair Labor Standards Act, the Occupational Safety & Health Act and state-based hiring regulations all affect how companies go about hiring employees. In addition, Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Age Discrimination Act are among prominent anti-discrimination laws that HR must consider in recruitment. It isn't enough to have best intentions to act fairly; companies need proactive and organized recruitment systems to demonstrate fairness and quality.

Targeting the Right People

Recruitment marketing is a common phrase used to describe communication strategies to attract the right types of job applicants. The challenge for HR professionals is to figure out the most efficient, targeted ways to get their message to job seekers. Headhunters, ad campaigns, career fairs and job board postings are among common recruiting tools. Companies must balance limited budgets and resources with the need to attract a large pool of qualified applicants.

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