Win the war for talent with full cycle recruiting

Last updated:
February 26, 2021
December 16, 2021
min read
Bev Campling
Table of contents

Full cycle recruiting, also known as end to end recruiting, is a term used to describe the entire talent acquisition process from start to finish. It begins when the need to fill a new role is identified and ends with onboarding the new employee.

A full cycle recruiter is an experienced talent acquisition specialist who manages every stage of the hiring process on their own. Full-cycle recruiting is the norm in small and medium-sized companies where recruitment is one of the responsibilities handled by HR. Usually the person in HR is well skilled because they have a broad range of duties. But large corporations can also benefit from this efficient hiring process.

When is full cycle recruitment beneficial?

End to end recruiters are highly skilled in the business of sourcing and placing the best talent. They know their stuff and can be of great value to hiring managers because they provide support and guidance. Many agency recruiters manage the whole recruitment life cycle, but internal in-house recruiters often adopt the same role.

In large corporations, the recruitment process is usually spread amongst junior, intermediate and senior staff with each playing a specific role in the recruitment cycle. However, when a vacancy comes up with skills that are hard to find, a top recruiter can be tasked with full life cycle recruiting. The benefit is that they will spend time focusing only on filling that particular role in the quickest time possible with the best candidate they can find.

Dedicated and focused attention always yields the best results and the shortest time to hire.

What is the full cycle recruiting process?

Full cycle recruiting starts when a new vacancy comes up. Whether it’s a new or existing role, the hiring manager has to work alongside the recruiter to ensure that the job requirements and the ideal candidate are clearly defined. Together they’ll draw up a full cycle recruiting process map that will also include timelines, deadlines and the ideal time to fill.

In general, eight stages make up the core of full cycle recruiting. You may need to add one or two more, depending on the type of position and your industry.

1. Defining the role

Knowing the purpose of the job is essential to the success of your business. Vague ideas and ambiguous definitions won’t get you the right talent. It’s vital that the hiring manager takes some time out to clearly define what skills and experience are required. Also, to establish where the role fits in.

If it’s an existing role that’s open because of a resignation or retirement, never fall into the trap of using the previous employee’s job description. Especially if they’ve held that job for some time. Technology and processes evolve as do people and team dynamics. You could find that the job requirements have changed substantially.

2. Defining the ideal candidate

Once you know the job requirements, you can start working on the skills, experience and characteristics that will best fit the role. Soft skills are just as critical as hard skills. The new employee must not only fit the job, but they must fit into the team, department and company as well. A person can have the best CV with all the skills and experience you need and more, but if they don’t fit the environment they’ll inevitably leave.

Obviously you understand your company culture, but you must consider the team dynamics and the personalities that will surround the new employee. People who feel comfortable and emotionally safe in their direct working environment make happy employees who make your business more successful. Happy employees are also engaged and productive, and they tend to stay.

3. Job description

Now that you’ve defined the requirements of the job and the ideal candidate to fit the role, you can get down to writing the job description. Job description templates are convenient, but if you are going to use one make sure to tailor it to fit the exact requirements of the role.

The job description is eye-catching and attractive so that people want to read on and apply. Include all the essential information as well as a bit about your company culture and promote your employer branding effectively. Tell people why they should want to work for your organization and why you’re better than your competition.

4. Sourcing candidates

You might already have identified potential passive candidates and want to approach them directly; this is commonly called head-hunting. Or you may prefer to source passive candidates via social media and by mining your talent pool. This is certainly worthwhile because according to a LinkedIn survey, 70% of the global workforce are passive candidates.

Posting to job boards also takes careful consideration, especially for specialized vacancies. Your aim is to get your post in front of the right candidates as quickly as possible, so be sure to choose platforms that attract people who’ll fit your ideal candidate. You’re looking for quality applicants, not quantity.

5. Screening applications

This is the most time-consuming stage of full-cycle recruiting. As a solo recruiter it can get hectic going through loads of applications to come up with a shortlist. This is where automation becomes your closest ally. An applicant tracking system (ATS) can help you automate the mundane tasks like responding to unsuccessful applicants. A chatbot is excellent for answering FAQ. Be innovative and harness HR tech as much as you can.

Many of the job portals also allow you to include screening questions and they post directly to social media as well. Some portals like Indeed allow you to send applicants online assessments and skills tests to make drawing up a shortlist easier.

6. Interviews and selection

After screening out the best candidates it’s time to make direct contact with them. Brief telephone or video screening interviews are best, especially if you have quite a few candidates on your shortlist. Having a list of less than five prepared interview questions at this stage allows you to make fair and transparent decisions.

When you know who you want to meet for face to face interviews, set up appointments and confirm dates and times with individual candidates and the hiring team. Before interviews commence, compile a more comprehensive list of interview questions in conjunction with the hiring team.

7. Making an offer

It’s essential that everyone on the hiring team has agreed upfront on the salary package, benefits and any other perks that are on offer. Also, don’t regret any of the other candidates on your shortlist until your best candidate has accepted.

When you’re making an offer always do it verbally first. Give the candidate a call and tell them that you’re about to send an offer through and look forward to their feedback. If you just send an email, the candidate might overlook it, and they could lose interest or accept another job.

Depending on the job, either the recruiter or the hiring manager can make the call. If you anticipate that there could be some tight negotiations involved, get the hiring manager involved from the start. Negotiations can be the most sensitive stage of full-cycle recruiting when you can easily lose your best candidate. Once the candidate accepts, send them a formal job offer letter detailing the job responsibilities, compensation package, benefits, start date, working hours, etc.

8. Onboarding

The full cycle recruiting process doesn’t end once the candidate has accepted the offer. It’s vital to keep in regular contact with the new employee from the time they accept the offer to the day before they start. That way you ensure that they’re definitely going to start and you also let them know that you and the team are eagerly awaiting their arrival.

Draw up a new employee checklist to ensure that you take care of every aspect of employee onboarding. Your checklist must include everything from preparing mandatory and statutory documentation to setting up the workstation and deciding who will meet and greet the new hire when they arrive. Leave no stone unturned to make it a great candidate experience.

End to end recruitment isn’t for the faint-hearted

As you can see, full-cycle recruiting is a focused hiring process that will land you the best talent. In a competitive business world of tight deadlines, skills shortages and a raging talent war, full-cycle recruiting can keep your business at the forefront of attracting the best candidates. Don’t forget to get back to candidates who weren’t successful and ask them if you can add them to your talent pool. It’s all about the candidate experience, and they could be ideal for a new job that could pop up tomorrow.

No end to end recruiter can survive without technology. An ATS, chatbots, automation and HR tech are all there to help you succeed. Be sure to use them wherever you can.

Get the

Get the exclusive tips, resources and updates to help you hire better!

Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on Linked In
Go to the top

Hire better, faster, together!

Bring your hiring teams together, boost your sourcing, automate your hiring, and evaluate candidates effectively.