Finding Good People on a Budget


Recruiting can be difficult, challenging, time-consuming and expensive. This has always been the case, but these difficulties are even more prevalent in today’s market. It may be a suitable time to pause and re-think your recruitment strategy.

If you are juggling multiple job postings while also needing to manage the other functions in HR, then this balancing act requires top-notch organizational skills. It may also necessitate requesting help from a recruitment company: which can certainly add value but can be very costly. Alternatively, experimenting with different recruitment techniques that you have not tried before may produce cost efficient results which will pleasantly surprise you. It may require an upfront time investment of planning and preparation to gather information, familiarize yourself with the various recruitment methods and build connections, but this will pay dividends in the long run and make a huge difference in recruiting more effectively.

Attracting and retaining good hires is essential to growing and evolving the business. The wrong hire can have detrimental consequences such as a negative impact on morale or by directly or indirectly lowering productivity. Do not just wait for candidates to show up, be creative and proactive. You need to spend time building your network so that you have access to an extended pool of talent. In the way that a recruiting firm has a database of candidates to contact, it can also be possible for your business to build a recruitment talent platform using various techniques to build connections.

Effective Recruitment Tips:

Create an Employee Referral Program (ERP)

Employee referrals are one of the best ways to recruit candidates. Employees are asked to make recommendations for anyone they know of that could be a suitable fit for a particular job opening and are rewarded with a bonus or benefit.

It is not only a great incentive for the employee to earn extra cash, but the chances are good you will find a skilled new hire that is an ideal fit for the role. Your employees have their professional networks that they may have previously worked with or have friends and contacts with similar known skills and experience. You should offer a monetary benefit which employees will appreciate. Employee referral programs are a simple, fast, and effective way to recruit, with minimal effort and cost. Rewards can be paid immediately upon hiring the candidate or after completion of the probationary period.

In addition to generating candidates there is the added advantage that the employee working for you can provide the recruit with realistic expectations and information about the culture and brand. They will help make the on boarding experience smooth and lower stress for the new hire while also reducing transition risks for your organization.

For best timing efficiency, be sure to promptly communicate newly opened vacancies to staff in parallel with public search announcements. If staff are familiar with the ER program, they may recommend someone as soon as they become aware of a job opening. There are great benefits in implementing an ER program for both the organization and employee. Make sure to keep the application and incentive process simple and uncomplicated so that the program is not undermined by administrative overhead.

Maximize your use of LinkedIn

The key is building your connections, sharing useful content, and networking with prospective candidates. LinkedIn can absolutely help you with this.

Many of your connections may not be actively looking for work but it is possible they will be willing to make a move if the opportunity presents itself at the right time and in the best way. There are professional groups you can join which will give you access to connections within a similar field or industry. This is a excellent way to build meaningful relationships, share tips and ideas and keep up to date with trends and changes within your industry. It is also an ideal way to post an open vacancy to members that have similar interests and experiences, and it costs you nothing.

Professional head-hunters do this very well by reaching out to passive candidates and asking them if they might know of someone that suits the profile and may be interested in applying. There are times when this happens, and the candidate will think about a friend or colleague who is currently looking for opportunities and may be a good fit. Do not wait until you have a vacancy to network, but rather continue to steadily build up your connections over time.

You can join LinkedIn for no cost and enjoy the benefits of a free membership to find great hires. There is also the Premium membership option which gives you greater access to connect with members through the In-Mail feature. However, even with the free membership, if you have a personalized “catchy” message that does not go over the 300-character limit, you will still have an excellent opportunity to spark a strong candidate’s interest.

Make sure to set your profile to “hiring” as LinkedIn will force this to draw the attention of active candidates. Post your job opening in your own feed as well as share the post with your professional groups. If you have a few thousand first degree connections, the chances are your post will get high visibility. By creating a company page and building your followers, this is another opportunity to post your company jobs and reach connections that already have an interest in your organization and are following. You can post your jobs on your company page for free as well as one free job advertisement within a 30-day window that can shared with everyone on your LinkedIn network.

Target the right talent when you search for candidates by effectively using the filters provided by LinkedIn. You can enter the job title and location and can also be more specific by adding an industry and level of education for specialist jobs which will also effectively narrow down your search. In defining your search criteria, be sure to look for candidates that have changed their profile to “open to work” as these are candidates that are currently searching and actively asserting their candidacy.

It is important to try to stay in contact with your connections by adding content, writing blogs, re-sharing interesting articles, and staying in touch. It takes little effort to send a congratulatory message to a connection on their promotion, acknowledging their anniversary, or contributing towards a discussion feed. You can also keep a proactive list of candidates you’ve connected with that would be ideal for roles that may come up in the future.  There may be candidates you have connected with or interviewed that you felt had potential but lacked the experience at the time. In the future that individual may be exactly what you are looking for.

Familiarize yourself with the available Hiring and Training Grants

It can take weeks (or even months) to get your new hire up to speed and effective in a new role. How great would it be to be receive a grant that assists you to cover part of their training costs? There are also several opportunities to hire students through Canada’s Student Work Placement Program which provide students the opportunity to develop and improve their skills and at the same time fill a void in your workforce. Student employees can bring new energy to your teams and are often very keen to contribute with fresh ideas and talent. You may be eligible to receive between $5,000-$7,000 for these initiatives. The Government of Canada provides a full list of programs in a wide range of sectors, and you can either advertise for students directly or leverage program talent pools.

There are other creative ways of finding external talent but also make sure you are not overlooking your current employees that may have the exact skills and talent you are looking for. The benefits and rewards given to your staff for their unique capabilities will go a long way to keep them happy and motivated. Contact Bridge Legal and HR Solutions for practical guidance and HR support – (647) 794-5442 or at

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