You know you need to hire a sales executive but besides the job title, do you actually know what kind of candidate you are trying to target? In this economy, candidates have options – and they are educated job seekers. You need to fully understand what these candidates are looking for and where they are looking to attract them to your open positions. Taking the time to develop a candidate persona will help you understand your target talent audience and consistently hire high-quality applicants.
What is a candidate persona?
A candidate persona is a “fictional representation of your ideal hire for a specific role…based on as much real data as possible, along with educated guesses about experience, goals, motivations, and concerns.” It’s essentially a research-driven strategy to attract your ideal candidate, similar to the process marketers use to develop buyer personas and attract their target customer. Personas, different than simple profiles, will move you away from the more technical way of recruiting and differentiate your company on the job boards. Having a candidate persona can help you rely personality and allow candidates to connect to this and the cultural fit of a job posting.
How do I create a candidate persona?
Start by examining your current employees, specifically your top-tier, and identify trends. Look at their education, experience, career path and even location.
While the data is important, it’s also crucial to talk to those existing employees. Find out what matters to them. Ask them what they do on a daily basis, what attracted them to their current role, what they are interested in, and what matters to them in a job. Interviewing those employees and people in your company who understand the role, whether it’s the hiring manager or recruiter, will help you learn more about the qualities and personality traits of the ideal candidate.
Next find out where your candidates are coming from. Knowing where your top applicants and hires come from can help you focus on the channels that deliver the best results. Within CareerPlug, we offer automated candidate source tracking and provide you will this reliable data to use in creating your candidate persona.
How do I use the candidate persona in my recruitment process?
Once you have identified the qualities of your candidate persona, you can use this information to improve your recruiting process. Share the persona with your recruiters and hiring managers so everyone is on the same page. Use the qualities you identified to create a job description and elevator pitch that will be targeted towards your ideal applicant. Having this candidate persona as a guide during your decision-making process will give you a focus and better chance of attracting the right talent.
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Taylor Wilson is one of CareerPlug’s Dedicated Account Managers.