5 Kinds of People You Might Want in a Talent Community

Screen Shot 2013-05-14 at 9.45.07 AM“Talent community” is one of those phrases that means something different to everyone — something I mentioned back in 2011 with the launch of a bartender community.

But — setting aside the definition of these communities in the first place — who exactly might be part of such a group?

Ascendify Founder & CEO Matt Hendrickson says there are five different categories of people who could be community members:

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  1. Candidates and prospects
  2. Recruiters
  3. Hiring managers
  4. Current employees (Hendrickson says they can help build the community through referrals; I’d add that they can also produce or share content)
  5. Alumni

Marvin Smith, who wrote a recent and excellent post explaining what he sees as the different kinds of talent communities, sees a sixth group as possible community members. That category consists of consultants and others who are a part of a given field, though they are not necessarily job candidates.


3 Comments on “5 Kinds of People You Might Want in a Talent Community

  1. I guess I remain confused about “Talent Communities”. It seems no different from groups on Social Networks – just that is has a moniker applied to these groups.

    What we need is someone to take online recruiting to the next level, not just add a term on top of a process already done today.

  2. Well said, Chris. As I said on the panel- a TC is a good idea in theory, but in practice most companies won’t have the ability or willingness to do all that’s necessary to make it work. It would make more sense to put your time, money, headcount, buy-in, etc. on things which have more immediate hiring value. Will a company be willing to pay my recruiter colleagues and me to run a TC and establish relationships with people who may not even apply for an *average of 7 1/2 months? I’d enjoy that job; just don’t expect my colleagues and me to be responsible for a quota of current reqs. at the same time, THAT’S CRAZY. Where WILL you get the people to maintain the TC? Will they be your own people or new ones? How will they be trained and who will train them, or will they just be expected to pick it up as they go? Does your TC budget include these people and their training? These are some questions which aren’t usually discussed when we talk about TCs.

    Furthermore, before you go about creating and setting up a largely untried and potentially very expensive operation with one or more of the various types of TC, wouldn’t it make sense to use tried-and true methods of increasing hires, like a well-run and well-paid Employee Referral Program, a good career site with a quick and easy job search and application process, or a team of sourcers quickly and directly going after the people you want now and in the future instead of slowly and indirectly trying to attract people who MIGHT one day be interested in you? Or, you could decide to have a meeting with your Staffing group and ask the recruiters, sourcers, and scheduler/coordinators what things WE think would make our jobs more effective, and go with those suggestions- we probably have some pretty good ideas.



    * At the Unconference, I learned that the average TC member is in the TC for 7 1/2 months before they apply.

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