Talent Acquisition vs Recruitment: Everything You Need To Know
September 13, 2022
The terms “talent acquisition” and “recruitment” are often confused and are thought to be different terms for the same process that can be used interchangeably. To some extent this is true, but there are some stark differences between these two terms. Simply understanding the key differences and similarities between the two processes can help you hire the most qualified talent and create a sustainable hiring process for your organization.
This article takes a deep dive into everything you need to know about talent acquisition vs. recruitment.
Talent Acquisition is a proactive and a cyclical process that is geared towards building a positive employer brand, creating a feasible talent pool, and foreseeing future hiring needs. It is a strategic approach that not only seeks to fill current positions in an organization, but also the development of a strong talent pipeline that utilizes candidates and their skills for the fulfillment of future positions.
Talent Acquisition is a long-term human resource planning and is a continuous process.
Strategic talent acquisition also involves the awareness of current staffing trends, state of the present workforce as well as the future workforce, and using those insights to attract potential talent.
Recruitment is a linear process that deals with hiring candidates to fill open positions within an organization quickly. When compared to talent acquisition which is more of a proactive and continuous process, the recruitment process is reactive and momentary. For organizations, it's essential to find the right person for the right job, and in order to do that, you must have a well-organized recruitment process.
Source: Terry Laban
Recruitment is only one of the subset of talent acquisition. The entire process can be further a broken into 5 activities:
Although both approaches involve filling vacant positions of an organization, there are some key differences between recruitment and talent acquisition.
The easiest way to understand the differences between talent acquisition and recruitment is to view them as long-term planning and a short-term fix, respectively.
Recruitment is a prompt exercise, a need of the hour. For example, a recruiting professional has to create a series of challenges to screen candidates from the talent pool based on the key skills required for the job role and hire the best talent fit for the role. All these activities have to be completed within the shortest possible time.
Whereas strategic talent acquisition is a less hurried process that deals with the future talent needs of the organization.
Strategic talent acquisition is a continuous cycle that can take more time up-front and focuses on activities such as outreach, employment branding, networking, candidate engagement, and relationship building with talent communities. These activities in tandem build and enhance an efficient talent supply chain for any business.
On the other hand, recruitment is a linear process, where recruiters source and screen candidates for current vacancies. This often leads to an increase in recruitment metrics such as cost-to-hire and time-to-hire.
Acquiring talent is largely about getting the cream of the crop for your business. Talent acquisition is dynamic and all about growth. The strategic approach becomes more fluid if new positions are created based on future talent needs or major changes are made to the existing ones.
The recruitment process is static, that is, it ends when somebody is successfully hired. It doesn’t change. There is no major effect that can felt across an organization because of recruitment as it involves filling up an empty position.
The traditional recruitment process is all about filling current empty positions. When you choose to recruit for your business, you likely have a clear understanding of what the role requires and the key skills and knowledge required for the position. It is a great way to fill sudden and unexpected vacancies.
A recruitment process helps in raising some important questions:
There is never a need to completely remove recruitment from the picture and just be focused on talent acquisition. But rather, talent acquisition and recruitment should be considered as two different processes with different goals.
Strategic talent acquisition is a cyclical approach to finding potential candidates for your business who will be motivated and engaged to build a positive company culture. It is geared towards developing and nurturing a talent pipeline with a long-term view.
You should consider engaging in talent acquisition for the following situations:
Certainly, strategic talent acquisition includes recruitment, but it also includes these 6 key elements:
To establish a Talent Acquisition strategy across an organization, you need to build a winning team. Your company's Talent Acquisition (TA) team should align their goals based on your company’s size and future workforce needs. Members of the team should be familiar with hiring practices, innovative tools of recruitment, and also have excellent networking skills to build relationships with potential talents online and offline.
Your TA team could include:
Recruitment has always been a part of talent acquisition. Setting up an entire Talent acquisition strategy takes more time up-front, but in the end, it helps organizations build the best possible team. Irrespective of the path you choose the key is to upgrade your knowledge on the trends and technologies available and utilize them efficiently to deliver success.
Keerthi is a Content Marketing Strategist at Adaface.