Why there’s more to finding the best talent than placing an advert

I get why people think some recruiters have an easy job – but the truth is that there’s more to finding great candidates than just scribbling out a job ad, or sifting through CVs. Here are my thoughts on why employers need to put more in to get better candidates.

Finding great talent requires more effort than it used to. Simply placing an ad no longer cuts the mustard.

In today’s busy online recruitment market, job ads can get lost. Inboxes constantly ping, and many ignore that constant influx of new information. On LinkedIn, people skim past your carefully written ad. So, for someone on the lookout for specialist talent, whatever their business, knowing how to get the right candidate’s attention is vital.

Anyone can place a job advert. But even the best ad in the world may not reach the right candidates. There are so many choices of where to put your ad that not everyone will see it. And job ads aren’t free – so how do you know you’re getting a good return on your investment?

Posting a job ad alone is an increasingly old-fashioned way to hire. Today, you need to work harder to reach the talent.

Passive candidates are on the rise

Many of the best candidates aren’t fully engaged with seeking new employment. The rise of head-hunting and of candidates casually looking for opportunities means people now wait for the right job to come to them.

Last year, approximately 85% of our senior placements were from passive candidates, ie those who aren’t actively looking. We had to work hard to grab their attention and maintain their interest during the recruitment process. These highly sought-after candidates, most already in good travel jobs, often have lots of interest in their experience so you need to position yourself as the travel employer of choice.

You’re unlikely to interest these people with a simple job ad.

Attracting great candidates often means head-hunting

Most employers don’t want to headhunt themselves. And unless your team has a strong network and access to expensive recruitment tools and tech it is unlikely you will gain access to the best candidates on your own.

The advantage of specialist recruiters is that we have access to all areas. We already know potential candidates and have long-term relationships with companies in the industry, from small businesses to large corporations.

The trusted Progressive Travel Recruitment banner – or branding – gets us more access to more people. Everyone in my travel recruitment agency team is professional, knowledgeable, well-connected, and approachable. So even when we approach people that aren’t already in our network or know our brand, they quickly feel in safe hands. We do use advertising, but it is only one aspect of the way we recruit.

If you work in the travel industry, you contact us here. For other industries, we recommend you search online for specialist head-hunters or recruitment agencies in your industry. Then take time reading reviews of these agents, not just on their website but on public profiles (Google, Facebook, LinkedIn etc); and delve deeper looking at reviews on senior recruiters’ individual profiles. You can review my recommendations here.

The return on your investment can be tracked

Paying a fee for someone to find you the right candidate can look expensive. But you have to weigh up whether you want the best people for your business or mediocre with a sprinkling of good. Why chance it?

I use Rec2Rec (recruitment 2 recruitment) agents to find talent for my account management team here at Progressive Travel Recruitment and 14fiftyseven, as I know I’ll recoup the fee with a great hire. I recognise that others have access in areas where we don’t know the market. Success is also easy to measure if you have regular performance reviews and I can track their financial contribution to my businesses from day one. I put my money where my mouth is.

Myths about recruitment agencies

Some people think recruiting is easy money – I know recruiters can be seen as CV sifters, or closely associated with estate agents and car-sales people. From my 17 years’ experience in recruitment I can honestly say it is like anything, there is good and bad. If you do your research on the agency and probably more importantly the team, then the good people should emerge, and hiring them will add measurable value to your business.


Connect with me here on LinkedIn to see how my team and I can help.