Keeping the People Report
LB@keepingthepeople.combullet (913) 620-4645bullet
E-Letter Volume 11 Summer Issue, 2007

In this issue:

  • Checklist of Proactive Sourcing & Recruiting "Guerrilla Tactics"
  • Preliminary Results from "Motivations to Leave" Website Survey

Checklist of Proactive Sourcing & Recruiting "Guerrilla Tactics"

As the economy continues to grow, even at a slower pace, the supply of qualified talent continues to thin, and we hear more complaints about unfilled jobs, key industries and occupations where the competition for a limited number of candidates is tooth-and-claw, and that traditional recruiting and sourcing methods no longer work.

While Keeping the People, Inc. specializes more in employee engagement and retention than in recruiting, we also know that the best employers are the ones who somehow find a way to have the best selection of job candidates to choose from. There are two ways to do that: 1. Build a great-place-to-work culture from the inside out so the word gets out through your current employees and thousands will be lined up to come to work for you (a.k.a. "the velvet rope" phenomenon that Google and Southwest Airlines have so successfully demonstrated), and 2. Expand your talent pool in creative ways to make contact with previously overlooked sources, more diverse populations, and better candidates who are usually not active job seekers.

To help you pursue the second of these two strategies, we offer this complimentary list of more proactive, non-traditional tactics. If your company is using other such tactics not on the list, we would appreciate hearing about them

1 ____ Create or revitalize employee referral program increasing employee awareness of the program, by giving a bigger bonus for employee referrals, or by holding a drawing for paid vacation (or other valued prize) to those who have referred successful new hires.
2 ____ Ask new hires to list their five best former co-workers and add them to your target list of potential recruits.
3 ____ Hire more disabled workers to do the jobs they are able to do.
4 ____ Create your own training course or center and recruit top graduates.
5 ____ Sponsor internships, sponsorships, or apprenticeship program for high school or college students.
6 ____ Make your own web site more compelling & effective by showing streaming videos of engaged employees discussing their career paths and what they like about the company.
7 ____ Connect interested web surfers with current happy employees so they can develop a relationship with someone at your firm and ask any questions they like.
8 ____ Allow candidates to create ideal job description on your website to be matched with current or typical openings.
9 ____ Look for prospects with experience in related industries.
10 ____ Recruit judiciously from clients, customers, and suppliers.
11 ____ Establish relationships with military organizations to recruit those who are retiring or leaving
12 ____ Register to list your open positions with your state employment service.
13 ____ Create a first-name relationship with state welfare and job service officials so they will remember to refer candidates to your company.
14 ____ To recruit entry-level service workers, stop at community centers, introduce yourself, and say "I'm looking for workers."
15 ____ Create a public-private partnership with local transit officials to subsidize transportation for workers to your job site.
16 ____ Know your prospects' media preferences, outside interests and set up a recruiting booth where they congregate.
17 ____ List openings with outplacement firms and community job clubs.
18 ____ List openings on professional association and community job hotlines.
19 ____ Work with local chambers of commerce to create a resume bank of new arrivals.
20 ____ Hire and train entry-level workers through the federal "Welfare-to-Work" program.
21 ____ Recruit a more diverse workforce by setting up booths at minority job fairs on college campuses with more diverse student populations.
22 ____ Create an incentive to interview.
23 ____ Print cards that managers and recruiters can hand out to impressive people with whom they come in contact, reading "You have impressed us with the quality of your us for a job interview" or words to that effect.
24 ____ Entice a retired (or about-to-retire) employee to "un-retire", work part-time, or consult.
25 ____ Make it clear in your recruitment ads that you value and are interested in hiring older workers.
26 ____ Start an "alumni" e-letter and send holiday greeting cards to former employees to stay in touch.
27 ____ Start a "Boomerang Club" for employees who left and came back. Celebrate their return by having them speak to groups of current employees (including new hires) about why they thought the grass was greener when they left, and what they missed most about your company as a place to work.
28 ____ Host "job club" meetings in your office.
29 ____ Ask current employees for names of three good people who may be interested in coming to work for your company.
30 ____ Encourage employees to volunteer for philanthropic activities. Their involvement will reflect favorably on your company and serve to build relationships between your employees and potential recruits.
31 ____ Begin evaluating hiring managers based on "new-hire retention rates" to make them more accountable for "quality of hire."
32 ____ Train all managers to capture the names and e-mail addresses of impressive people they meet at conferences. Over time, create a talent database and send the people in it an e-newsletter describing your company as a great place to work.
33 ____ Create a "most wanted" list of prospective employees, circulate it among current employees, and stay in regular touch with everyone on it.
34 ____ Ask "most wanted" what it would take to get them to join your company.
35 ____ Offer a "job-when-you're-ready" to top most-wanted prospects.
36 ____ Consider recruiting through international channels.
37 ____ Create a recruiting kit with CD-ROM or thumb-drive included.
38 ____ Begin or increase use of internet, radio, TV, and movie advertising to compensate for reduced print readership among younger workers.
39 ____ Place recruitment ads in out of town media or small local media outlets.
40 ____ Run a new ad with new message in a new medium designed to attract a targeted demographic segment, such as Hispanics or women.
41 ____ Hire a bi-plane with trailing banner to fly over crowds at sporting events.
42 ____ Host invitation-only open houses for prospective job seekers/changers.
43 ____ Develop relationships sooner with younger workers via classroom presentations and by introducing your company to school administrators and faculty.
44 ____ Expand your hiring pool by recruiting more part-time or temporary workers for positions where they have not been previously employed.
45 ____ To increase the pool of interested candidates, eliminate certain undesirable job tasks and reassign those tasks to easier-to-recruit employees, or reduce experience requirements that limit the pool of qualified candidates.
46 ____ Consider relaxing company policies that forbid the hiring of relatives.
47 ____ Create jobs where experienced people can learn the industry.
48 ____ Send cookies to the homes of prospective hires on New Year's Day with an invitation to come in for an interview.
49 ____ Recruit multiple college graduates from the same university with the appeal of maintaining their relationships as coworkers in the same firm.
50 ____ Stop limiting your recruiting to "the best" universities. Many of your best hires may be "diamonds in the rough" to be found at lesser-known universities and state or community colleges.
51 ____ Contact real estate and relocation firms that are interested in assisting relocating spouses with finding new jobs.
52 ____ Consider recruiting those you contact as references.
53 ____ Stay in touch with employees who leave and contact them as sources for new talent leads and referrals.
54 ____ Ask talented people at other companies if they would be interested in working for your company as a consultant during weekends or evenings.
55 ____ Do everything in your power to get all hiring managers to "own" the sourcing and recruiting process instead of looking to HR for total accountability. All managers should consider themselves full-time "talent scouts."

Many managers and human resources bemoan the fact that they are so often put in the position of hiring "warm bodies" because they believe in many cases it's better to have the wrong person in the job than no one at all. The best employers usually think just the opposite. In fact, the best places to work almost never have shortages partly because they are they are so creative, proactive, and persistent in their efforts to find and hire the best and the best-fits.

We hope this list has helped you identify at least a handful of new ideas that you can use immediately to get the best people on the bus and in the right seats-the first giant step toward engaging and retaining them.

Copyright, Leigh Branham, Keeping the People, Inc, 2007. All rights reserved.
Adapted from: Keeping the People Who Keep You in Business:
24 Ways to Retain Your Most Valued Talent,
by Leigh Branham (AMACOM Books, 2000).

"You can't hire those that don't apply."

-- Anonymous


Preliminary Results from "Motivations to Leave" Website Survey

Thanks to all of you among the 596 interested visitors (so far) to our website who took the time to complete the "Motivations to Leave" survey. We will report the full results and comments about what managers believe about why employees leave and stay in a future issue of The Keeping the People Report.

One purpose of the survey was to gauge whether managers believe the primary motivation of employees' decisions to leave is based more on a "push" factor or more on a "pull" factor. Here's how we asked the question, and the results so far:

Please choose the one of the following reasons that best describes the motivation of most departing employees when they decide to leave your organization:

    A. Motivated more by their dissatisfaction or desire to leave than by the attraction or availability of an outside opportunity. (34%)

    B. Motivated more by the attraction or availability of an outside opportunity than by their dissatisfaction or desire to leave. (26%)

    C. Equally motivated by their dissatisfaction or desire to leave and the attraction or availability of an outside opportunity. (40%)

Are you surprised by these results? We welcome your opinion. And if you have not yet taken the "Motivation to Leave" or "Decision to Leave" survey and would like to do so, just go to

The Seven Hidden Reasons Employees Leave: How to Recognize the Subtle Signs and Act Before It's Too Late, by Leigh Branham (AMACOM Books, 2005).

Keeping the People Who Keep You in Business: 24 Ways to Hang On to Your Most Valuable Talent, by Leigh Branham
(AMACOM Books, 2000).

To order either of these books click here.


To send this newsletter to a friend, please click here.

Keeping the People, Inc. helps organizations link employer-of-choice strategies with business strategies, conduct third-party post-exit interviews and surveys, conduct engagement surveys with current employees, and provides the management coaching and training needed to implement those strategies.

For more information, contact Leigh Branham directly at (913) 620-4645, or by e-mail at Also visit the Web site:

Keeping the People Report
LB@keepingthepeople.combullet (913) 620-4645bullet
13488 West 126th Terrace, Overland Park, Kansas 66213

Copyright, Keeping the People, Inc. 2005. Keeping the People Report is written and edited by Leigh Branham.