5 Recruitment Tools You Should Be Using

5 Recruitment Tools You Should Be Using

The 5 Most Successful Recruitment Tools You Should Be Using

With recruiting talent constantly on the do-list for most organizations, the laundry list of recruiting tools in Figure 1 below probably looks familiar. In short, employers are most likely using a healthy combination of online recruiting, relationship based recruiting, and connections to the career services centers at higher education institutions to search for their talent.  

But in a recent poll, ERC took this question of, “How do you recruit?” one step further—adding, “And has this method been successful?” With tight budgets and a tight labor market, it is more critical than ever that the time and money being put into recruitment is bringing in the right candidates for the jobs to be filled. So, for research purposes “success” was defined as: “the recruitment method’s ability to bring in qualified candidates.”  

According to ERC’s research the top 5 most successful recruitment methods are below. Please note, the percentages provided combine both the “successful” and “very successful” rankings into one measure of recruitment success. 

1. Internship programs & Co-op programs: 61% 

Not all organizations have their own internship programs from which to recruit new talent, but for those that do, bringing on a “new” employee that already knows the ropes around the organization is a win for everyone involved. 

Even if organizations are recruiting from external internship or co-op programs, knowing these recent graduates already have some real-world work experience can definitely improve their level of qualification. 

2. General online job boards/websites: 63% 

As the most commonly used recruitment method, reaching candidates online is definitely one of the easiest ways to recruit. By far the most commonly used (and most successful) recruiting website was “Indeed.com,” although “Zip-Recruiter,” and “Monster.com” were also mentioned as being successful. 

3. Employee referral programs: 70% 

When an existing, trusted employee helps bring a candidate in, chances are they aren’t putting their reputation on the line for just anyone. 

This recruitment method actually had the highest “very successful” ranking at just over a quarter of the participants (26%). 

In addition, if the budget can handle it, a little referral bonus can help swell the ranks of this candidate pool. 

4. Your organization’s online career center/website (external): 72%  

Interestingly, not a single participant gave this recruitment method an “unsuccessful” ranking. It should also be noted that while they were rated slightly higher, company specific career sites were much less commonly used for recruiting (by only 58% of participants) than were general online job boards (97% of participants).  

5. Staffing agency/third-party recruiter: 74% 

Clearly, involving a third-party in recruitment efforts is going to require a financial investment of some sort, but according to our poll, they get the job done.

Knowing which recruiters or agencies are the best fit for the types of positions an organization is trying to fill can be a huge help in ensuring this is money well spent.  

Other recruitment tools from the list in Figure 1 below that were ranked either “successful” or “very successful” by at least half of the participants included:  

  • 56% Your organization’s internal career center
  • 54% LinkedIn
  • 52% Word of mouth
  • 50% Outside referrals

Figure 1: Types of recruiting methods used

Recruitment Method
General outline job boards/websites97%
Word of mouth87%
Employee referral program97%
College/university online career services center84%
Outside referrals77%
Staffing agency/third-party recruiter74%
Database of past rejected candidate resumes68%
Internship programs65%
Your organization’s online career center/website58%
Job fairs58%
Direct relationships with college/university career55%
Your organization’s internal career center/intranet52%
Direct relationships with college/university faculty45%
Candidate research services42%
Vocational schools42%
Industry-specific online job boards/websites42%
Co-op programs42%
Help Wanted sign39%
Faculty referrals from colleges/universities39%
Print advertisements/classifieds35%
Other recruitment methods10%

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  • Liz Maier-Liu

    Liz Maier-Liu specializes in writing high-quality, engaging copy across all channels, including email, web, blogs, print, and social media. She is passionate about helping ERC build long-lasting relationships with clients and members through storytelling and delightful copy that calls them to action.Since 2019, Liz has supported ERC’s marketing team. She currently manages ERC’s email marketing campaigns, social media accounts, marketing automation, and websites. Liz also executes content strategies that drive engagement, leads, and customer retention.