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Top Recruitment Best Practices for 2021

by | Apr 27, 2021 | Recruitment

Recruitment Best Practices 2019

Employees are the lifeblood of any company, which means finding the best talent is critical to your organization’s continued success. As we wrap up Q1 of 2021, it’s wise to ensure your organization is following the latest top trends in recruitment best practices. This expert guide will help revolutionize your recruiting practices through 2021 and beyond so that your competitors don’t leave you behind.

Recruitment is an ever-evolving process. As people, businesses, and the world change, recruiting practices need to change along with them. Finding suitable candidates can be like trying to hit a moving target: Your audience is always moving on to the latest big thing, so you have to be right there, ready to prove that your company is among the best. Use these latest trends as the basis for a recruitment strategy plan that will lead you along the journey.

2020 Hiring in Review

First, a look back is in order: History can always teach a valuable source of insights into what is to come. Let’s look at what the job market was like in 2020.

The unemployment rate in 2020 peaked to a 21st century high of 14.7% in April and dropped to 6.9% in October. The US labor market has since recovered more than half of its pandemic losses. Temporary layoffs have become permanent, yet some have opened back up.

Having no face time with a candidate before placement is probably one of the biggest changes recruiters have faced over the past 12 months. Some employers have been making offers without meeting candidates face-to-face at all. However, with technology being used more prominently throughout the world to combat the pandemic, rounds of interviews continue to be done over web services such as Zoom or Google Meet. For some recruiters, this also might mean getting used to technologies that are out of their wheelhouse — allowing for some learning opportunities. Recruitment agencies such as Helios HR decided back in March to switch to all remote work, saying that they’ve “moved [those] interviews and presentations to video, and [they’re] encouraging our clients to do the same”

For many recruiters, the technology was an obstacle but many have had to seemingly overcome this difficulty. A silver lining is that the prolonged use of the remote work technology will allow for future flexibility and use for many who wish to work remotely moving forward.

2021Recruitment Best Practices

As we continue moving into 2021, recruitment best practices take the best of what trended in 2020 and incorporate new approaches, underutilized sources of talent, and new uses of technology. This can include using classic marketing strategies, placing emphasis on employer branding, taking an inbound approach to recruiting, or utilizing an applicant management system, such as The Applicant Manager. 75% of all recruiters say they use recruiting software; your organization shouldn’t be at risk of being left behind.

Use Recruitment Marketing Strategies

A big trend for recruitment best practices in 2020 was recruitment marketing: approaching recruiting candidates like a business markets to customers. In a candidate-driven market, the candidates have become the customers. Recruiters should focus on attracting candidates in the same way that businesses use marketing funnels.

The marketing funnel for recruitment marketing includes:

  • Awareness, where the candidate is made aware of the brand
  • Consideration, where the candidate considers the benefits
  • Interest, where the candidate becomes vested in the prospect

From there, the traditional recruitment stages commence, where the candidate applies, is selected, and then gets hired.

Make Use of Social Media

Social media continues to be a major player in recruitment for 2021, and it’s still underutilized. As social media evolves, with platforms going in and out of favor, so too should your recruitment processes.


Instagram is trending toward being the number one social media platform, which means it’s potentially fertile ground for recruiters in 2021. With one billion monthly users in 2020, Instagram is ripe for recruiters looking to build talent pools, increase brand awareness, and woo individual candidates. In fact, according to, 90% of Instagram accounts follow businesses.

However, Instagram is currently one of the least used platforms for recruiters, with only 13% of recruiters and hiring managers saying they regularly look at it, compared to 87% who regularly use LinkedIn. This means that it’s a space with untapped potential.


According to Hootsuite, 68% of Americans have Facebook accounts. While there’s a limited demographic that uses Facebook — 35% of Facebook’s ad audience is under the age of 25 — it’s still a viable field to include in your best recruitment practices in 2021.

Employ Inbound Recruiting

Inbound recruitment is an offshoot of recruitment marketing, in that the recruiter increases brand awareness in order to move the candidate into the recruitment marketing funnel.

Inbound recruiting methods should include creating relevant content and building accurate candidate personas. This is a long-term approach to recruiting that will enable your company to build a talent pool from which you can source future employees.

Focus on Employer Branding

Employer branding is an essential element of marketing to candidates. Long before a candidate becomes interested in an open position, they become aware of the brand. This is why excellent employer branding is so crucial; if the brand is identified as negative in any regard, the candidate’s mindset is against the employer even before the recruitment process has a chance to begin.

Reputation plays a key role, which means that online reputation management comes under the purview of the recruitment professional. This trend for 2021 marks a shift in paradigm, blending the roles of the marketing and recruitment teams. In a recent study, 75% of candidates research an employer’s brand before making any application for the job.

Your Careers page and job listings are as much a part of your brand’s online presence as anything else is, which means they should be consistent with all other messaging. The photos, fonts, voice, and overall style on all applicant-facing pages need to reflect your company’s brand. This helps applicants get a sense of what it would feel like to be a part of the company.

Enhance Candidate Experience

The candidate’s experience during all the stages of recruitment plays an important role in how far they will go in the process. Candidates who enjoy a positive experience are more likely to continue through the recruitment marketing funnel, more likely to apply, and more likely to make favorable referrals to your company.

Utilize an Applicant Management System

Some ways to enhance the candidate experience are to use talent-management software tools like The Applicant Manager (TAM). Using an applicant management system is one of the top recruitment best practices for 2021.

TAM helps both recruiters and candidates by streamlining the entire recruitment process from applicant management and hiring to onboarding. This ensures that each candidate has the best possible experience, no matter where they are in the marketing funnel.

The Applicant Manager (TAM) is a Software as a Service platform that allows HR personnel, recruiters, and hiring managers to easily source, manage, and onboard new employees. For information about incorporating TAM in your recruitment processes, please contact us today.