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Yes, You Can Still Master Recruiting During a Hiring Slowdown: 5 Simple Ways to Hire Through Internal Mobility

August 13, 2020
iCIMS Staff
5 min read

In this 5-minute read, you’ll see how the way you connect employees with new opportunities isn’t so different from sourcing externally. Except for one key difference: internal hires result in reduced recruitment marketing costs, speed, and retention in times of transition.

Just stopping by? Find the quick list of takeaways and a complete guide to your virtual hiring essentials at the end of this blog.

Your top candidates may be within your existing workforce

Internal mobility isn’t a new focus, but it’s now a key differentiator for current and future talent management. When COVID-19 hit, HR’s top priority wasn’t to hire new employees. It was to keep their workforce productive and safe while we all figured out what was next.

Efficiently hiring internal talent comes down to understanding the tech and mindset to make it quick and turnkey for your talent team.

How internal mobility eases the impact of COVID-19 on your workforce

Filling critical talent gaps with existing superstars can support your team with:

  • The ongoing concern for workforce stability among essential services overwhelmed by demand and those non-essential services hurt by financial cuts
  • Critical business priorities that call for redistribution of skills, while capitalizing on the additional time employees have for professional development and creativity
  • Strong retention of those who went through the pandemic and chose to grow with you
  • Quick conversion of successful short term or contingent hires to full time roles

Gartner adds to this, “Many organizations need to gather knowledge of their internal skills in new ways. This has led to increased interest in internal talent marketplaces, which can help managers with the redeployment of staff from low-demand to high-demand activities. Furthermore, these solutions can help organizations tap into existing talent when external hiring is not an option. They also make it easier to reskill and upskill talent when new skills are needed quickly.”

You’re likely familiar with the ways virtual hiring tech arose as an essential driver to keep hiring going when we transitioned to remote work. More on how to attract, engage and retain employees in the new remote work era here.

But there’s a new chapter to that evolving story. Bring your virtual recruiting best practices to your internal hiring experience.

5 ways to build a recruiting experience that embraces internal mobility

  1. Create a clear path to career progression- Do employees wanting to grow know where to go? Just like you would advertise jobs to new talent pools, consider how you can get new openings in front of employees first. Many employers use their career site technology to build an internal career portal that lets employees quickly apply with the information already in your system, marking them as internal candidates to trigger a preconfigured hiring workflow.
  2. Discover internal matches and engage them first- Maybe your perfect fit for a new role isn’t actively considering a role change. Passive talent pools live within your employee base too; having an easy way to identify where transferrable skills and experience exist in your organization lets you reach out first. AI-informed candidate matching considers your employee base in addition to external talent pools when a role opens up, to show you the best match for a successful hire.
  3. Build a dedicated internal workflow that reflects the process for new talent- Once an employee applies for a role, there are many steps they can likely bypass that a new candidate would have taken. Look at your hiring software and consider if internal applicants are clearly represented in search results and automatically sorted as their own talent pool for relevant communications. You may also want to look at your ability to create an offer letter template specific to internal hires that can be accepted through an e-signature to make the process quick and repeatable.
  4. Keep engagement high– Many of us will remain remote, and one thing we’ve learned more in 2020 than ever before is the importance of authentic communication. Just like external job seekers, your employees likely have email on their phone, but appreciate the instant nature of texts. While these employees have unique access to recruiters that they may know well, flexible communication channels and regular status updates shouldn’t fall off your radar. Keep people informed with automatic text messages triggered by key milestones in the process such as a video screen invitation, a skills assessment, or a final interview. It goes a long way in the relationship you’re building, even if that relationship began years ago.
  5. Don’t let onboarding slip– Yes, these people are existing employees and won’t need the robust onboarding program of a typical new hire, but may need a refresher on critical information and key tasks to perform well on day one—especially without in-person training or team bonding available. Customize an online, self-service onboarding portal with relevant tasks that may include things like updating email signatures, while also maintaining the sleek look that welcomes them with the same excitement a new company would provide.

Not using online onboarding yet? Read how to tackle an entirely remote onboarding program for both new and familiar hires here.

What you’ll want to bring back to your team:

Here’s the quick recap for your next team meeting or summary to stakeholders owning your recruitment tech stack:

  • ROI and competitive advantage require an experience specific to internal hires
  • Virtual hiring tech adapted by leading employers during COVID-19 is applicable
  • Dedicated career sites, workflows, offer letters, and onboarding portals define the experience
  • An HR cloud platform for recruiting provides the capabilities needed in a single technology

Whether you’re actively building new talent pipelines, maximizing your existing workforce, or both—Power Your Business with Virtual Hiring is a great resource to keep on hand.

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