THE BLOG
09/19/2013 06:13 pm ET | Updated Nov 19, 2013

They're Just Not That Into You: Why Your Recruiting Strategy Isn't Working

Hiring managers, listen up: Your recruiting strategy may not be working as well as you think, and everyone knows it but you. For example, ever find yourself interviewing the same candidate over and over? What about hiring someone you think is qualified, only to discover they aren't so great after all? Or, worst of all, not receiving any qualified applicants?

Just like job seekers, if you use the same method over and over and aren't getting the results you want, something needs to change. If you don't, you'll be faced with the same brick wall that's currently blocking your path. It's time to be the hiring manager that candidates want you to be, and not one they're just not that into.

With that in mind, here are some tell-tale reasons why your recruiting strategy isn't working, and what you can do to fix it:

Your job descriptions are ineffective
Think of a job description as a gateway to your organization. Without the right messaging, job duties, and list of qualifications, you won't receive the right candidates, which stretches out the recruiting process longer than it has to. In fact, 43 percent of workers found out during the interview that the job didn't match what was written in the job ad. That's no good, no matter what way you slice it.

Quick fix: Craft job descriptions with as much detail as possible -- never mind the length or the fact that it may contain lots of information. The more job seekers know, the better. In addition, if you're worried about sounding too wordy, you can always point the candidate to your careers page or an external site which can house video testimonials, employee facts, or company information.

You don't get back to applicants
This is pretty sad statistic: About 75 percent of workers who applied for jobs using various venues didn't hear back from employers. Not only is this poor practice, it's also pretty bad for your reputation. There's nothing worse than a job seeker scorned, especially if that job seeker has a large following or is influential in their space.

Quick fix: As a recruiter, you're obviously busy. However, a simple automated email (at the least) can help ease a job seeker's mind. Plus, if you're able to do this at every step of the hiring process, you'll limit how long an applicant waits around to hear back from you.

You're looking in the wrong places
Ever wonder if you're not receiving the right applicants because you're looking in the wrong places? For example, if you're only using job boards, you may not receive the same types of candidates you would receive if you went to career fairs or used social networking. Changing the way you actually source candidates can dramatically improve your applicant pool.

Quick fix: Take the time to understand where your ideal candidates hang out. If they have a huge presence on Twitter, use customized hashtags. If they go to lots of alumni events, try using university career centers. If your space is very specific, consider using a niche job board. Evaluating where your candidates are will produce better results.

You don't use your network
According to a recent source of hire report, referrals are one of the top ways to gain the best employees. So, if you're not using your network, you may be missing out on some all-star job seekers. Plus, getting a stamp of approval from someone you know may make it easier to make a decision if you're down to the wire and can't pick from a bunch of qualified applicants.

Quick fix: Actively let your network know when there is a job opening. Chances are, someone knows someone who's right for the position, which not only helps you to find quality employees but takes away some of the leg work as well!

Although you may be used to a certain recruiting strategy, you have to understand when it's time to switch gears and use other methods. Doing so will open up your candidate pool and allow you to find those star employees who will make your organization shine.

What do you think? What are some other reasons to improve your recruiting strategy for job seekers?

Val Matta is the vice president of business development at CareerShift, a comprehensive job hunting and career management solution for university career centers and HR professionals that gives job seekers complete control over their search. Connect with Val and CareerShift on LinkedIn.