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How talent acquisition can establish a competitive advantage

Phil Cooper
By Phil Cooper
on April 11, 2013
How talent acquisition can establish a competitive advantage

People are a company's greatest asset. We are all familiar with this phrase, which has become something of a cliche. However, that doesn't change the fact that, quite simply, it's true.

The workforce always has and always will be the deciding factor in whether a business fails or succeeds. From the boardroom down to the bottom level, it's the actions of people that determine profits and allow companies to establish a competitive advantage over their rivals.

The latter is something that's particularly important with the current economic climate in the EMEA region. While some nations, such as Germany and the UK, appear to be making progress back towards pre-recession levels, the situation in other countries, particularly those in southern Europe, remains very challenging.

In both of these scenarios the need to establish a competitive advantage is paramount and an effective talent acquisition strategy can play a key role in this.

The right people for the job

It goes without saying that hiring the best people on the market will benefit a business, but this, of course, is easier said than done. For example, in recovering markets such as the UK, rising confidence will see talent movement increase, but there will be fierce competition between organisations to attract the best. It is the companies that succeed in this struggle who will have the optimum opportunity to take advantage of the recovery.

The movement of talent is rarer in countries where the economic situation remains difficult, but this can make securing high performers all the more vital. Managing to bring in top talent at a time when rivals are scaling back their own recruitment efforts can make all the difference in a tough economy.

It’s also important to remember that relationships are at the core of effective talent acquisition and building good relationships with potential candidates can prove beneficial both immediately and in the long term.

Diversity

It's no longer up for debate that a diverse workforce at multiple levels gives an organisation an edge. However, it's important not to fall into the trap of being diverse for diversity’s sake. Finding the right person for the job should always be any hiring strategy's number one concern, but making the process as encompassing as possible will increase your chances of reaping the benefits provided by having a diverse workforce.

Embracing technology

Technology is central to every aspect of the business world and recruitment is no exception. Implementing a recruitment strategy that has its finger on the pulse and is at the forefront of the latest developments such as social recruiting, is one more way in which talent acquisition can deliver that all important competitive advantage.

The advantages of this are twofold. Not only does it enable your organisation to make the most of the benefits provided by the latest technological innovations, it also makes the recruitment process more engaging from the candidate’s perspective as the likes of Twitter and LinkedIn are becoming an integral part of the job market for both employers and employees.

Flexibility

While hiring the best talent alone is enough to establish a competitive advantage, taking a flexible approach to workforce management can expand the benefits even further.

Being able to easily move between RPO and contingent workforce solutions depending on your specific needs at any one time will improve the speed and efficiency of your acquisition efforts. This will leave your company primed and ready to adapt to any economic changes in what is still an uncertain time, and this flexibility can put you one step ahead of your competitors. 

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Phil Cooper
Written by Phil Cooper

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