Open vs Targeted Recruiting

Open vs Targeted Recruiting


Open ‘vs’ Targeted Recruiting: Which one to use?

In today's competitive business landscape, the battle for top talents has become nothing short of a fierce and strategic contest. As the demand for skilled professionals continues to outpace the available talent pool, the spotlight is now on the importance of upgrading recruitment strategies to stay ahead in this relentless pursuit of excellence.

Traditional recruitment approaches are proving insufficient in attracting and retaining the best and brightest minds, making it imperative for companies to adopt a more nuanced and proactive stance. A strategic and adaptable hiring process can make a significant difference for businesses competing for the best talent. This can be achieved through open recruitment strategies or targeted approaches tailored to specific skill sets. By focusing on different dimensions of the recruitment process, businesses can showcase their competence and expertise in attracting top talent.

What is Open Recruitment Strategy?

Open recruitment attracts a diverse pool of candidates for job openings by casting a wide net. This strategy is inclusive and welcomes applicants from various backgrounds and experiences, rather than focusing on specific skill sets or qualifications.

Open recruitment involves advertising job positions through various channels, such as job boards, social media, career fairs, and company websites. This approach is highly effective in reaching a broad audience and attracting a diverse talent pool. By valuing diversity and inclusion, organizations can consider candidates with different perspectives and experiences. This leads to a stronger and more innovative workforce.

What is Targeted Recruitment Strategy?

Targeting recruitment offers job openings to a specific audience based on certain characteristics such as region, skillsets, or experience. This recruitment strategy ensures that your available positions are only presented to people who meet the criteria you're searching for.

Targeted Recruitment is used when companies aim to fulfil particular business objectives. This may involve hiring to satisfy specific corporate mandates, such as diversity or disability hiring, or recruiting skilled individuals for designated locations.

In targeted recruiting, prospective candidates are typically not actively seeking new opportunities; they are considered passive candidates. The company attracts a select, well-defined pool of applicants by tailoring its advertising efforts to the requirements for candidates with precise qualifications or skill sets. The recruitment channels or candidate sources are deliberately constrained to ensure the highest quality of applicants.

By both strategies - Open and Targeted Recruitment - candidates who meet the required criteria for a job opening are sought.  The difference is that Open Recruitment is aimed at active candidates. Targeted Recruitment is used to attract both active and passive candidates, but with selected advertising and outreach.

Benefits of Open Recruiting

As we already said, this approach encourages a diverse range of applicants from different backgrounds and experiences, placing emphasis on inclusivity rather than prioritizing specific skill sets or qualifications. Here are some benefits from the use of Open Recruiting Strategy:

  • Diverse Talent Pool and Fresh Perspectives:

Open recruitment broadens access to candidates with diverse backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives, fostering a more inclusive and innovative work environment. External candidates contribute new problem-solving approaches and insights, driving innovation and creativity within the team.

  • Broader Skill Sets:

Casting a wider net attracts individuals with diverse skills and competencies, particularly beneficial when seeking candidates with specific technical or niche expertise.

  • Reduced Internal Bias and Expansion of Networks:

Open recruitment mitigates internal biases, ensuring fairness and equal opportunities, promoting a merit-based hiring process. Engaging in open recruitment helps organizations expand professional networks, fostering valuable connections for future hiring needs and industry relationships.

  • Enhanced employer branding:

Positive and transparent hiring practices during open recruitment contribute to a strong employer brand, attracting top talent and improving the organization's market standing.

  • Market Competitiveness:

External recruitment helps organizations stay competitive in the market by ensuring they have access to the latest talent and skills. It enables them to adapt to changing industry trends and demands.

Disadvantages of the Open Recruiting Strategy

In addition of the advantages of the Open Recruiting, there are some disadvantages like the volume of applicants, training costs, unknown cultural fit. Also, the talent search process may last longer.

Open recruitment can result in a high volume of applications, making it challenging for recruiters to sift through and identify the most suitable candidates. This can lead to increased time and resource investment in the screening process.

Also, onboarding new hires from external sources may incur additional training costs, as these individuals may need to familiarize themselves with the company culture, processes, and specific job requirements.

Benefits of Targeted Recruiting

The narrow approach of targeting recruiting offers several benefits for organizations aiming to fill specific roles or meet particular objectives:

  • Accuracy in Candidate’s Selection:

Targeted recruitment allows organizations to focus on candidates with specific skills, qualifications, or attributes tailored to the requirements of a particular role. Some roles may have unique requirements that are not easily met through traditional recruitment methods. Targeted recruitment allows organizations to adapt to these specific needs by actively seeking individuals with the necessary qualifications.

  • Less costs:

By concentrating efforts on a well-defined pool of potential candidates, organizations can use their recruitment resources more efficiently. This approach minimizes time and costs associated with reviewing applications from candidates who may not meet the specific criteria.

  • Faster Hiring:

Focusing on a targeted group of candidates often streamlines the hiring process. Recruiters can quickly identify and engage with individuals who possess the required qualifications, reducing the time it takes to fill critical positions.

  • Addressing Skill Gaps:

Targeted recruitment is effective in addressing skill gaps within a company. When there is a need for specific technical skills, recruiters can concentrate on finding candidates who possess those.

  • Customized Employer Branding:

Organizations can tailor their employer branding efforts to appeal to the targeted group of candidates. This customization helps in creating a compelling narrative that resonates with the desired talent pool.

Disadvantages of Targeting Recruiting

While effective in addressing specific hiring needs, Targeting Recruiting comes with its own set of disadvantages. Significant drawback is the fact that targeting recruiting process consumes a lot of time and energy, due to the meticulous approach in identifying individuals with the required expertise in the talent pool.

Recruiting specific talent is a resource-intensive process that requires a detailed understanding of job requirements and a tailored approach to attract desired candidates. However, this investment of time and effort in the hiring process is necessary to ensure the best possible outcome.

There is also a risk of overspecialization, where a focus on specific qualifications may overshadow other essential qualities such as adaptability and interpersonal skills.

Open or Targeted Recruitment Strategy – which one is better?

There is no right answer. It all depends on the situation and all the surroundings’ factors. A well-rounded recruitment strategy often combines both targeted and open approaches to ensure a balance between precision and inclusivity in the hiring process.

Important to remember is that by Open Recruitment we have deeper talent pools; generalist approach; usually high hiring costs; all available channels and major job board; the candidate screening is broad; active candidates.

By Targeted Recruitment we have narrow talent pools; focused recruitment approach; usually low hiring costs; targeted advertising and niche job boards; stringent candidates screening; active and passive candidates. It is recommended for searching IT and tech talents.

No matter which strategy you choose, it is beneficial to rely on more than one source in the process of searching relevant candidates for a job opening. TalentSight is a platform that combines candidate profiles from a wide range of sources. You can try it at :