10 min read

How to Optimize use of Internal Recruitment Channels for Job Vacancies?


A business can recruit through two different channels: Internal recruitment is when the business looks to fill the job vacancy from within its existing employees. During external recruitment the company looks to fill the vacancy from any suitable candidate outside the company.


Every organization needs prioritize recruiting—whether to fill a job opening, staff a new position or plan for succession of management. According to a SHRM research report, over 60 percent of HR managers reported having difficulty hiring right job candidates in the past 12 months.


Organizations must plan with diligence whether they recruit internally or externally. Many employers prefer to conduct internal recruitment first and turn to external recruitment only if internal efforts are unsuccessful. Internal recruitment’s are less expensive because there recruitment costs are relatively negligible. They also don’t require background checks, extensive training, integration to company culture, referral bonuses, and travel and relocation costs. Internal recruitment’s can save company much needed time as well. For an internal hire, hiring may be completed within a few days or weeks.


Hiring managers do prefer internal recruits since they have a good understanding of the employee, their skills and temperament, and performance documents and data can be readily accessed and evaluated. Managers also have a good sense of the strengths and weaknesses of the employee.


Employees also find it easier to succeed at a new job in the same company because they already have people connections, comfortable with the work environment, can bond better and faster with other team members and have better understanding of the corporate culture. Also the fact that internal recruitment is good to boost employee confidence and can be used as an employee recognition tool. If employees constantly see positions being filled externally, they may feel that their efforts are not valued or rewarded and they have no growth prospects at the organization. This may dampen their morale and they are chances they resign and look for greener pastures elsewhere.


Employers use external recruitment to attract individuals with niche skill sets that are not found within the company, when seeking to grow the business, need a fresh perspective or when looking for new direction in leadership. Fresh ideas and vision are benefits of bringing someone new into the organization.


HR’s Function

HR’s function in recruiting varies according to the size and scale of the organization. A large organization may have a HR department with multiple HR professionals delegated with the task of attracting and recruiting talent. In a small organization, an HR generalist may need to recruit on a need basis. The basic requirements of an HR specialist (such as use of job analysis and job descriptions), techniques (job posting, talent acquisition) will apply.


HR must not only ensure compliance in the recruiting process but also act as a business partner with a strategic talent acquisition approach. Recruitment is a key role for HR professionals because acquiring talent is essential for an organization to meet its goals and to succeed in a rapidly changing marketplace.


Recruiting Fundamentals

Employers generally use a mix of internal and external recruitment tactics. Both methods have some things in common such as job analysis; nicely designed job descriptions; and compliance with applicable laws, especially equal employment opportunity laws.


Hiring Manager Intake Meetings

When a role needs to be filled (either internally or externally), HR should schedule an internal meeting with the hiring manager to learn more about the job, the essential requirements and the skills of the ideal hire. The recruiting strategy (how are we going to find these internal or external candidates) can be discussed, and expectations can be set (what will HR do, what will the hiring manager do, etc.). Using a checklist of questions and discussion topics to address during these meetings can help to capture the key elements, and sending a follow-up e-mail to the hiring manager outlining the agreements and expectations that were set during the meeting can ensure everyone is on the same page.


Job Analysis And Job Descriptions

At the start of the recruitment process, employers should first conduct a detailed study of the precise characteristics necessary to complete a job, to determine the activities of the job and then create a job description that defines the job responsibilities and skill sets needed to perform it.


Internal Recruiting

Internal recruiting typically consists of one or more of the following approaches:


  • Internal job posting
  • Rewarding Star Performers
  • Employee database
  • Succession planning


Regardless of which approach—or combination of approaches—an employer adopts, it should craft a policy that is fair and equitable to internal applicants, that sets expectations for employees applying for a position, and that is implemented consistently and communicated openly throughout the organization.


Job Posting

Companies publish job posting internally to create awareness among employees of new job openings while detailing the necessary skill set to make them qualified for the job. Employees can choose to apply for those vacancies they think they have the right skills to perform.


Rewarding Performers

Here managers have a rating system and employees who outperform and who consistently perform are identified, shortlisted and rewarded by the company for new vacancies. This method might encourage employees to perform better and achieve the targets set for them. However, this approach may be prone to favoritism or unlawful discrimination if implemented badly.


HRIS Database

Employers maintain Human resource information systems (HRISs) which is commonly used to track various personnel-related traits. These may include a database of employees’ knowledge, strengths, skills and abilities (KSAs). New hires can create a KSA profile that details their background, experiences and career goals and update the profile periodically, usually in conjunction with a performance review or career development discussion. This database can used by HR to identify individuals for potential promotion or transfer.


Succession Planning

Organizations can use succession planning strategies not only to identify the potential talent in the organization, but also to establish developmental plans to help prepare individuals to manage greater responsibilities. Leaders with an eye for talent can spot skills in employees and train them for greater responsibilities.



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