Internal Recruitment: What is it and Why you should try it

A person doing a checklist about the hiring process

We already discussed What is the Recruitment Process. Now it’s time to talk about Internal Recruitment Process.

The term ‘Internal Recruitment’ refers to the process of identifying and attracting candidates to another position within the same organization.

Instead of opening the position to the public and attracting candidates that are currently unemployed or working on other companies, the human resources department of some companies may choose to advertise the vacancy internally and allow only members of the staff to apply for it.

Sometimes, if the internal recruitment is ineffective, the company chooses to advertise the vacancy also externally, to make sure the job position will be occupied. 

Internal recruitment also refers to a strategy that usually big corporations use to advertise their jobs internally. Due to these companies’ size, these job openings would otherwise go unnoticed by employees in other departments.

A while ago I worked at a large multi-national company that had a very effective internal recruitment process. Due to the fact that they had thousands of employees working at hundreds of departments all over the world, it had a board where job openings were internally posted. So, candidates could apply with their own company IDs.

Here at Pipefy, the internal recruitment opportunities are communicated through email, with information about the required conditions to change positions, required academic degree/previous experiences and the link to apply.

Companies like these two examples can choose to allow existing staff members to apply and then, if they’re not able to find a good match within their ranks, open the job offer to the general public.

Internal Recruitment Benefits

  • Culture alignment: recruiting internally has some benefits, such as not having to worry about the candidate being a good fit for the company’s culture. If the candidate is already part of the organization, he/she’s probably already aligned to your company’s culture and values
  • Career growth: internal recruitment can be the best way to climb the career ladder and get hired to a higher position and, consequently, get a raise. Even if the new job position is not hierarchically higher, moving to a new job that is more aligned to her/his career goals can make the employee happier. It can motivate employees to show good results and have an exemplary behavior to have the chance of growing in the company
  • Cheaper and faster: internal recruitment is usually cheaper than recruiting externally since it eliminates a few steps of the process. Also, the handoff between teams and the employee’s ramping up period will probably be shorter than hiring an external employee, causing faster results for the new position
  • Low risk: it’s easier to hire suitable candidates from within your company. If they already were hired once, it’s very likely they already went through all the testing and vetting that external candidates must go through. They probably already know their new team and the company environment, so there will be no surprises or disappointments from any part

Internal Recruitment vs External Recruitment

If you don’t know yet if a job position should be advertised externally or you should give internal recruitment a try, here are the main advantages of each type of process.
The best way to choose is to see what your company needs from the professional and what are the priorities in terms of cost, speed, and skills.

Internal Recruitment Advantages

  • Cheaper, because it doesn’t need to be advertised
  • Faster, since it eliminates a few steps of the process
  • Reduces employee turnover
  • Saves time and money during the handoff and training process
  • Increases employee motivation through the creation of career growth opportunities

External Recruitment Advantages

  • External employees usually bring new ideas for current processes and solutions for problems
  • Sometimes the vacancy requires technical and specific skills that internal employees don’t have
  • Greater number of applicants. With more people involved, the probability of finding good employees is higher
  • Wider range of experience. Bringing an outside employee can improve the teams’ experience and prepare your company for new challenges in the future

Make sure the company is okay with internal recruitment

If you’ve decided to have an internal recruitment process for a job position in your company, there are some things you should consider to make sure the choice will be fair and assertive.

The most crucial thing is that the entire company must be on the same page and believe that internal recruitment is a good idea. So, employees won’t feel intimidated to change areas, and managers will be aware of this possibility and won’t feel uncomfortable if someone leaves their team to another one.

A good way to make sure everyone in the company feels good about internal recruitment is to let managers know that this is the best way to keep an employee inside the company.

If someone is unsatisfied about their job and move to a different position instead of quitting (which cause costs for the company and might be an unpleasant situation for everyone), the new team get a good professional and the employee grows within the company. It’s a win-win situation.

How to lead an effective internal recruitment process

I talked with the person responsible for recruiting for the tech team here at Pipefy and she gave me some tips on how to have an effective internal recruitment process:

  • Be careful with bias when choosing among candidates you already know. Don’t let your personal opinions on them lead your decision
  • A good way to do this is to focus on objective data about the candidates. For example, a personality quiz or a work-related test may be useful to select the most prepared employee for the new position
  • Also, it’s important to take into consideration how much the person’s career will evolve with this new position; and how much the new department will evolve with this person’s experience
  • When writing the job description, make sure it is clear, so there will be no surprises after the employee changed their position. Also, describe the requirements for the job and the internal rules for this change (for example, a certain amount of months on the previous job)

Golden tip: build a Recruitment Process that makes sense for your company

Recruiting is never an easy job. We all know that. But it’s a crucial and needed process. Employees are the ones that help a company grow, as we already explained here.

Therefore, it’s worth investing time and resources to create a recruitment process that suits all your needs. It doesn’t matter if it’s internal or external.  

And you can count on Pipefy to help you with that. We have a pre-built Recruitment Template that you can start using now and customize it to your needs. 

Start building your Recruitment Process with Pipefy
Written by
Isabelle Wuilleumier Salemme
Head of Customer Support @Pipefy. She uses her extensive Pipefy knowledge to help users make the best of Pipefy via support and writing informative content pieces. Besides being in charge of support, she's an avid reader, a coffee lover, and a professional photographer.
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