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Glossary: HR & Recruiting Definitions

What is a Talent Pool?

A talent pool is a database of engaged candidates that have either applied for a position within your organisation, or have been through part of the recruitment process and have been rejected. These candidates may be more suitable for a different position in the near future. Candidates must voluntarily agree to be included in a talent pool. Talent pools are usually managed in an applicant tracking system (ATS).

Why is a talent pool important?

Finding, attracting, and acquiring great candidates is becoming increasingly difficult, yet it is essential to the success of any organisation. Hiring from a talent pool is a specific type of candidate sourcing. 

Creating a talent pool is important to stay ahead of the competition. Instead of interviewing a completely new set of candidates each time there is a new opening, HR managers can take a look at the selection of candidates that have been through at least a part of the hiring funnel in the past, and see if they’re a good fit. 

Building a talent pool has a few very important advantages that will affect the success of each team, as well as the overall organisation. 

The benefits of talent pooling

The main benefit from creating and maintaining a talent pool is that you’ll have quick access to many potential candidates that have already been screened and possibly interviewed or gone through the negotiation process. 

You may also notice that using a talent pool will lower your time to hire. Someone may be a perfect fit for a role that comes up further down the line than when they originally applied. In this case, they have already been screened and interviewed. The hiring manager may have also spoken to the candidate, and, for example, decided that they were not qualified for the role, but would fit better in a different position in the same team. 

Another advantage of creating a talent pool is an easier, faster onboarding process. Candidates that have already had contact with an organisation will know the company a little better. They would have already done some research and most likely have spoken to at least the HR manager. 

Talent pools also give you a competitive advantage. Having a database of talented candidates that have already had an interest in working for the organisation in the past is of course advantageous because it allows talent officers to quickly fast track them through a different process. Leaving little chance for the competition to hire them instead. 

How to build a talent pool

The first step of building a beneficial talent pool is providing both a positive candidate experience and employee experience. Feedback here is essential and HR teams should be asking for honest and open feedback on the interview processes and onboarding experiences. The more positive you create the interview process, the more likely candidates will want to be included in the talent pool. 

Candidates that have been unsuccessful in the recruitment and selection process must be left with a good feeling about potentially joining the organisation further down the line. Otherwise, they may not accept the offer of being added to the talent pool, preferring to go ahead with other companies or competitors. 

With a large talent pool, it’s very difficult to keep communication or rapport with each individual. To keep potential future hires engaged in the process and keep them excited about the prospect of joining the team, organisations can send rich content via newsletters with news and updates on the company's progress, any milestones that may have been achieved, or newly released features. 

 Are you planning to create a talent pool? Then also check out our GDPR article to ensure you comply with candidate data handling guidelines!

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