The Oxford Dictionary defines recruitment as “the action of finding new people to join an organization or support a cause.”

Recruitment seems like a pretty simple topic, everyone seems to understand the basis that there is a role to fill and the recruitment process is that of filling it – but today I’m going to give you a breakdown of what it is and how it happens, to answer the question “what is recruitment?”


The role of a recruiter (whether that is someone working in HR or working for a recruitment company) is to find the right people, who are in the right place, that have the right skills along with the right experience, who are available at the right time, for the right cost.


The Industry

There are two “markets” in the recruitment – temporary and permanent:

  • Temporary jobs can be on a flexible basis, and temp workers can be used to cover illness or maternity/paternity leave, for example
  • Permanent jobs are where, once employed, a candidate’s job is secure unless they are fired or quit (including fixed term contracts).


In 2013/14, the UK permanent recruitment market was valued at £2.6 billion, while the temporary/contract market was valued at £26.03 billion.

The Process

There are six stages of the recruitment process, which are as follows:

  • Human Resource Planning – this is where a HR team discuss what staff is needed for the company and when, sometimes with the aid of a recruitment consultant.
  • Defining the Need – the understanding of what is needed and ensuring that they know what they are looking for, which is summarised in an up-to-date job description and person specification.
  • Attracting the Candidates – the role is posted on job boards and social media to encourage candidates to apply.
  • Pre-Selection – the CVs are screened and compared to the job description/person specification before the best candidates are selected for assessment.
  • Assessing the Candidates – Interviews are conducted, application forms are completed, assessments are done; all in accordance to the wishes of the hiring company.
  • Selection Decision – this part of the process mainly falls with the hiring company but should be based on objective evidence provided throughout the process.


Recruitment Solutions

There are three main types of recruitment solutions for hiring companies to choose from:

  • Recruitment agencies – specialist Recruitment Consultants can assess a candidate’s skills and decide on whether they are relevant for your position, and provide a company with a handful of relevant potential employees.
  • Job board advertising – this consists of you, the company, posting your job directly onto job boards in order for potential candidates to find your vacancy and apply for it; then screening any applications that come in.
  • Flat fee recruitment – a bit of a middle ground between recruitment agencies and job board advertising, the recruiters will optimise your job advert, post the job onto various job boards, and then screen the applications which come in in order to find your perfect candidate.


Hopefully this blog post has given you a better answer to the question “what is recruitment?” If you are wondering what the best recruitment solution is for your process, we are now offering free consultations where our expert team will give you advice on the best service for you – no strings attached!