In the consulting world, talent is everything. After all, your company's "product" is ultimately your staff themselves: consultants, analysts, managers, and so on. When a company can harness the ability to recruit talent through their online marketing they will be able to then better sell themselves to potential clients, deliver higher value for their clients, and ultimately grow their company. This may seem like a stretch; however by the end of the article when everthing comes together we will see this to be true.
WHERE TO RECRUIT
One of the biggest questions is, where does a person go to recruit talent online? There are many different options. Let's look at three specific areas: social media, industry blogs and forums, and job postings.
- Social Media:
LinkedIn, of course, is the most obvious channel. However, many social media outlets can be of great value. We have recruited some of our brightest and most talented team members through connections made on Twitter, for instance. With social media, time must be taken to develop the relationship: to lay the groundwork and see if the talent is what the company is seeking to recruit.
- Industry Blogs or Forums:
You can also find talent through industry blogs and forums trading information and getting answers to questions. There is a great community of IT consulting and development talent, for instance, on the HubSpot Developers forum and the Salesforce AppExchange. Forums such as these are a great place to connect with high-end talent with pre-existing subject matter expertise.
- Job Postings:
A third area to recruit talent is, of course, through traditional job postings. Today one of the great ways to find talent is through referral. The easiest way to do this is to write a job description which people will want to share and refer to their friends and colleagues. Having a creative job posting that stands out from the crowd will help draw in the most creative and unique talent which most consulting firms are searching after when recruiting.
There are many different places where talent can be found. It is all about taking the time to get out and search for the talent. The importance, though, really is not about where talent is found. The more important part is how and who a company recruits.
HOW TO RECRUIT
The great thing is recruiting people while they are not even realizing they are being recruited. Taking the time to generate relationships through networking is one of the greatest recruiting methods out there. In this way the company is comfortable with the individual, and the individual likewise becomes familiar with the company, long before they are hired. Occassionally this happens and the company does not even realize they are recruiting. This is why a company should be ready at all times: always keeping an eye out for new talent: in case they end up needing to hire someone down the road.
WHO TO RECRUIT
There are many different people who can be recruited. However there are three main areas of focus in people who a consulting company may seek to recruit. Once we look at these three traits we will place all of this together and see the benefits of talent recruiting for consulting companies.
- Talent & Expertise
Obviously a company wants an individual with expertise. This can be in the form of specific subject matter, expertise, or demonstrated general expertise in analytical situations and the ability to quickly pick up subject-matter-specific expertise. What is key is searching out the expertise which fits what the consulting firm needs. Searching out a person with talent and expertise will provide more benefits than anything else a consulting firm can find recruiting.
- Personality & Communication
A person's personality is an important facet for consulting. It will determine how the individual works not only with clients, but also with prospects and with fellow employees. It is important to consider a potential recruit's personality, communication skills and emotional intelligence when looking to hire new talent.
- Connections & Network
In the B2B world, much of business is based on relationships, trust, and knowing the right people to call for the right situations. Keith Ferrazzi once said, "Your network is your net worth." If a consulting company is looking to expand their focus on a new industry vertical, one of the best ways to start approaching that is to bring on someone with connections and experience in that vertical. They will bring a long list of connections that they have: people who have worked with them, respect them and trust them. This in turn will bring credibility, respect and business opportunities for your company in that vertical.
There are several obvious benefits to talent recruiting. There is the stronger in-house expertise, improved name recognition and more effective business opportunities. These lead to additional benefits which could be greater down the road. With new talent comes potential connections which were never realized before. With new recruits' personalities and interpersonal skills there may be new connections with clients in ways which were previously unaccomplished. All of these things can come through the online recruiting work of a consulting company. It is all about leveraging the tools which are at hand.