We’re sure you already know, but a talent pool is a database of candidates that are often matched to the sectors that you recruit in, but aren’t necessarily matched to any of your current open roles. Talent pools are used by most recruiters, but when used to their full ability, they can give your recruitment agency one of its biggest sources of competitive advantage.

Building a database of candidates means that when a role comes up, you have a full talent pool to refer to before any advertising or sourcing activity takes place. Basically, it gives you the resources to fill roles quicker because you’re able to get shortlisted candidates over to your clients faster than you would when having to source them first.

Building your talent pools

Unfortunately, ‘perfect’ candidates don’t come around as often as recruiters would like. That’s not to say that there isn’t an abundance of great candidates out there, it can just be difficult to source the correct candidates for the roles you need to fill.

It’s expected that when you advertise a role, you’ll receive applications from candidates who aren’t best suited to the opportunity. So, given that you’ll have a database of unsuccessful applicants, this is an easy way to start building your talent pool. Just because these candidates weren’t a good match for the role they applied for, doesn’t mean they won’t be perfect for another future opportunity with one of your clients.

Then, given that there are more passive candidates than there are active candidates, you can use talent pools as a way to engage people who aren’t necessarily looking to change roles right away. Sourcing these candidates might seem like a challenge, but once you have their details in your database, they’ll be willing to consider suitable opportunities that become available. Passive candidates are particularly useful in hard-to-fill roles, and if you’re able to sell your opportunities to these candidates then you’re more likely to find the right niche skills needed for your clients.

While these are the two main methods used for talent pooling, there are various other strategies that can be put into place too. Consider things such as employee referrals, which often have a high success rate and are linked to benefits such as reduced costs and improved quality of hire. Other strategies like social media campaigns can get candidates proactively choosing to become part of your talent pool too.

The benefits of talent pools

Your talent pool won’t only provide benefits to your recruitment agency, but to your clients and candidates too – it’s a win for everyone involved in the process. Some of the key benefits you can expect to see are:

  1. Reduced cost-per-hire

Talent pools allow you to reduce costs in a number of ways. For example, when you already have a pool of talent to reach out to for a position, you can save the costs that come with advertising your job role. There would be a huge saving if you didn’t have to advertise across the likes of multiple job boards and social media accounts. Not to mention the improved levels of productivity of having access to candidates straight away, which can help to ramp up your income in itself.

  1. Reduced time-to-fill

Using talent pools offers greater efficiencies for both you and your clients. When a client comes to you with a role, you already have a stream of candidates ready to submit, meaning that it cuts out the long process of sourcing and screening candidates in order to find those who are suitable. This can also be a big selling point to getting new clients, as the faster process will give you a competitive advantage.

  1. Improved client relationships

Using talent pools means you’re able to offer a valuable database of candidates to your clients, who you know are more suited to their roles and needs. It means you’re more likely to be able to find candidates that are suited in their personality, skills, and qualifications to the client’s organisation, which is a service that helps you build relationships based on trust.

Throwing video into the mix

Given that talent pools come with so many benefits just from storing candidate information in your database, have you considered how this would accelerate when throwing video interviewing into the mix too? Whether you’re operating on a contingency or a retained model, video talent pools will become one of your biggest sources of competitive advantage.

When that fantastic candidates comes forward, but you don’t have any suitable roles for them at present, you can simply get them to complete a video interviewing. Ask them questions about their experience, their skills, their values – anything relevant to what type of industry and role they want to work in. While you can’t make it client specific at that point, it can still be made very relevant to your client’s needs.

When you have a pool of candidates that have completed video interviews, you can send these off to your clients at any given moment. So, not only are you reaping the benefits of a talent pool, you’re increasing the level of engagement and giving yourself a greater edge over the competition. Your clients are more likely to engage and respond faster to a video shortlist than they are a CV shortlist – and how many of your competitors do you think are submitting the same? While video interviewing is on the rise in the agency world, there are still more agencies who aren’t using it than those who are. So, implementing video interviewing now means you can stand out from the crowd and become the agency of choice. It’s time to become one step ahead of your competition!