What is the talent acquisition process? It is a strategic plan that employers use to source top talent in the industry. Employers will then execute the plan via recruiting, evaluating, and onboarding candidates.

Are you ready to improve your bottom line by acquiring top talent? We’ve broken down the talent acquisition process so that you can develop your own strategic process for your company.

Talent Acquisition vs Recruitment

These two terms may seem synonymous, however, there is a distinct difference. When recruiting potential employees the goal is simple – there is an immediate position that needs to be filled as soon as possible. Talent acquisition is when a company evaluates its long-term goals and is looking for a specific set of skills in a potential employee.

Recruiting leans toward filling an empty position as quickly as possible, while talent acquisition is based on finding the perfect candidate for the role regardless of how long it takes. Both require sourcing, interviewing, and hiring candidates but the process is a little more in-depth with talent acquisition.

The Talent Acquisition Process


The first step is to source your position. Maybe you are an HR representative or hiring manager that has been notified that there is an upcoming need. Learn as much as you can about the available position.

What type of person would be a good fit? Are you looking for attention to detail, efficiency, computer skills, or a combination of all three? Knowing what skills will be needed for the position is a must!

It is best to speak with the hiring department manager and ask questions such as, “What would a perfect employee look like?” Pay close attention when they list off qualities like time management, organization, or efficiency. These are great qualities that will help you in the interviewing and selection stages within the talent acquisition process.


The recruiting process starts with a detailed job description. Use your knowledge from sourcing to explain what the candidate will be asked to do daily. List any specific skills that are a must or that may be preferred. It is important to note the benefits of working with your company – compensation, medical, dental, vision, 401(k), etc.

While recruiting, it is imperative to utilize the social network you have built. This may be social media, company events, online forums, and other areas where specialists in your industry gather. Recruiting and networking go hand in hand. Many times your current employees will know someone who may be the perfect candidate!


Once the resumes have rolled in and you have sorted through the candidates you believe could excel in the position it is time to start interviewing! Before the interview create a few questions that will help you understand the candidate.

You want to see that the candidate has the skills needed to be successful in the position. Post-interview, if you think the candidate would be a good fit, contact their references. Many companies skip this step although it is a fantastic way to learn about the candidate and can help you determine the final selections.

Making Final Selections

Now is the time to take selected resumes and the interview notes to compare them. Did their references check out? Do you feel their personality and skills match the position you are hiring for? These are important questions when looking to hire a new employee.

Once you have found the person you feel is the best for the position it is time to make an offer. Make sure to contact the candidates that you did not select; This can be via call, text, or email. This helps continue the candidate relationship with what is called candidate management. Candidate management is building (and maintaining) a relationship with the potential employee.

Even if you are notifying the candidate that you did not select them it is important to make it a positive experience. You may soon have a position they would be qualified for and can keep them in your pipeline.

Hiring and Onboarding

You made an offer and the candidate accepted! Now is the time to bring them in to complete all necessary paperwork. During the onboarding process is the time to talk about details that may not have been mentioned in the interviewing process.

Topics such as getting paid, time off requests, setting up benefits, etc. This is the time for you to tell the employee anything they need to know about how the company works. It is important to streamline the onboarding process, not only for efficiency but to continue building a relationship with that candidate (think candidate management).

Make sure to let the employee know how to contact you in case questions arise after they leave the onboarding session. They may have forgotten to ask a question or may need to change their start date. Make sure you are available! You don’t need to know the answer to every question, simply make sure you can reach out to someone who has an answer.

Talent Acquisition Strategy

Successful recruiting of high-quality and qualified candidates can be stressful. It is important to have a strategy for how you are going to find potential candidates. Whether you are the hiring manager or simply part of the HR department these strategies will help you be successful.

One effective strategy is to be specific! Part of the talent acquisition process is learning all you can when an open position arises. This requires gathering feedback from managers and current employees. Being able to adequately explain a position is key to finding the perfect candidate.

It is important to understand your company’s values and mission statement. Boost the employer brand whenever possible. The easiest way to boost the brand is to tell people about the company and its mission.

Successful talent acquisition requires relationship management. Make every encounter with potential candidates and fellow companies matter. How you present yourself is a clear representation of your company. It is important to make every interaction a positive one.

This may mean checking in on candidates who are completing an online application, sending a friendly hello to partnering companies, or even being active in the community. Effective talent acquisition is complex – lead generation can come from avenues you would never expect.

Lastly, do some succession planning. This might sound counterintuitive but forecasting a company’s hiring needs will allow you to create a talent pipeline that will be unstoppable! A talent pipeline is the candidates you know are looking for a career change, or unemployed, that have been through the interview process.

These candidates are ready to be put to work and are just a call away. Companies love when you are ahead of them and can have a position filled before the end of the day will an excellent, qualified candidate.

Talent Acquisition Tips

Acquiring top talent can be challenging but here are some tips to help with the talent acquisition process:

Start with an easy-to-read job description. Most people know what they are looking for and it is important to be clear and concise while making the job description. Make sure to list the benefits such as medical, 401(k), or casual Fridays. Employees spend the majority of their lives at work and it is important to enjoy it!

Tell the company story and brand the company as a great place to work. Why is it a great company to be a part of? Where did the company originate? These are important facts to share with potential employees and partnerships.

It is important to be involved in the community. The best way to do this is to expand company outreach. This may be as simple as partnering with local colleges to educate students, volunteering as a company to help at a local shelter, or simply sponsoring a local event.

Overall, talent acquisition is a team effort. Each employee represents the company brand and those employees are interacting with many people each day. Sometimes the best tactic for finding great employees is simply turning to basic, simple recruiting.

Offering a referral bonus is a great way to get current employees to generate candidate leads. Most employees have friends or acquaintances that share the same hobbies and skills as they do.

Implement An Effective Talent Acquisition Strategy

At Discovered ATS, we can help you solidify your talent acquisition strategy. The acquisition and recruiting software that we have developed provides the tools you need to attract and hire top candidates to help achieve your company goals.

Our products and services make implementing your talent acquisition strategy simple and effective. Book a Demo today!