Recruitment can be expensive and needs to be done properly

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Explain, with reference to the academic literature, the different ways that recruitment can be carried out. Using the results of your academic research explain with detailed reasons which approach you would use for the following posts;

A Corporate accountant for an International Car Manufacturer

An Electrical engineer for the London Underground

A Sales assistant at a major supermarket such as Tesco

A trainee Lawyer for a multinational law firm


The purpose of this essay is to outline the different ways in which recruitment can be carried out. The essay begins by giving a brief definition of recruitment along with giving examples of the different ways that it has been described. Next, it will go on to explain about the different ways in which recruitment can be carried out and the methods that are associated with it along with their distinct advantages and disadvantages. Also, the essay will explain which approach it would recommend for each of the posts stated in the essay title and explain the reasons for the explanation in conjunction with the academic research. Finally, the essay will conclude by summarising all the points that have been made.

Definition of Recruitment

The terms 'recruitment' and 'selection' are often considered together, but they are in fact distinct human resource management activities (Taylor, 2005). Recruitment is generally understood to mean the process of sourcing qualified applicants to meet the employment needs of an organisation (Rothwell, 2010) whilst selection techniques are used to decide which of the applicants is best suited to fill the vacancy (Taylor, 2005). It has also been defined as "organisational practices and policies developed for the primary purpose of motivating applicants to apply, remain in the candidate pool, and accept job offers" (Edwards, Scott, & Raju, 2003, p. 72) and "an organisation's collective efforts to identify, attract and influence the job choices of competent applicants" (Hodgkinson & Ford, 2008, p. 45). Job vacancies can be filled by internal recruitment or external recruitment, or a combination of both. The choice will usually be based on organisational strategies, human resource policies and employee morale or financial reasons (Compton, Nankervis, & Morrissey, 2009).

Internal Recruitment

Most private sectors attempt to fill vacancies internally before they consider looking for people outside the organisation whilst in the public sector it is more common to advertise internally and externally. Promotions from within, lateral transfers, job rotation and re-hiring former employees are four main distinct internal recruitment activities. In each case current or former staffs are made aware of opportunities to develop in a new role within the organisation (Taylor, 2005).

Internal recruitment is typically from two sources: job postings and management decisions. Employers make it a policy to post some or all of their positions so that present employees may apply for them. Job posting programs also typically specify eligibility requirements because few employers want employees jumping to different job for small salary increases. Additionally, employees who apply for the vacant posts must have satisfactory performance and also a minimum amount of company and job work experience (Rothwell, 2010)

There are many advantages to recruiting internally such as organisations being able to recoup the investment they have made in recruiting, selecting, training and developing their current employees. Additionally, recruiting internally is a sign of a reward for the employee and a signal to other employees that the organisation is committed to their development (Pynes, 2008). Other advantages include the low cost of advertising as organisations can make staff aware of vacancies through staff notice boards, newsletters or intranet systems (Taylor, 2005).

The main disadvantage of internal recruitment is that it may attract applications from employees who are unsuitable or unqualified for the position, even though they may be good employees in their present role. A series of unsuccessful applications may be regarded by the employee as a criticism of his/her ability by the management, with consequent adverse affects on the employee's morale and work performance (Compton, Nankervis, & Morrissey, 2009). Also, in union settings and even in some nonunionized firms, the expectation is that those with the most seniority will have an edge for promotion decisions. This is also known as an entitlement mentality in which workers believe the employer owes them something for having been loyal or for having seniority (Rothwell, 2010).

External Recruitment

When the list of possible internal candidates is reviewed and no one is found to be suitable, a company would then start to advertise externally as it may decide that it needs fresh blood from outside (Compton, Nankervis, & Morrissey, 2009). Most organisations are familiar with the most popular approaches to recruit workers from outside: national online job boards, employee referrals, career sections of the organisation's web site, industry specific online job boards, print advertising, job fairs, regional or local online job boards, temp agencies, open house events, television advertising and radio advertising (Rothwell, 2010).

There many advantages and disadvantages of carry out recruitment externally. Some of the potential advantages of it is that new blood is brought into the company, thus allowing new and fresh ideas to be brought to the table. Additionally, there is no essence of favouritism so staff resentment will be avoided. In contrast, some of the disadvantages are that candidates may need more education and development or may not fit into the organisations values and culture (Compton, Nankervis, & Morrissey, 2009).

There are many options available with respect to external recruitment. In addition, high schools and universities can provide useful recruitment sources for base level or graduate recruitment. Also, services such as professional associations and trade unions, as well as employee referrals, can also provide external applicants of high quality. Unsolicited applicants may also prove useful, but many of these will send resumes to a broad range of companies and need careful consideration for their specific relevance to identified job vacancies. The category and level of the position to be filled also has a bearing on the type of the source to be used. The positions to be discussed include managerial and professional, Clerical and skilled and trades (Compton, Nankervis, & Morrissey, 2009).

The basic functions of a manager are to supervise and coordinate the work of subordinates and to also develop plans to meet company goals. Manager specialties include marketing, sales, advertising, promotion and public relations (Tambien, 2010). For managerial and professional some of the most effective sources include national metropolitan newspapers, the internet, agencies, professional bodies, professional journals, business schools and search consultants (Compton, Nankervis, & Morrissey, 2009).

Clerical work encompasses a variety of administrate functions, typically in an office setting. The general duties of a clerical worker can change on a daily basis depending upon the needs of the office (Williamson, 2009) positions are manly done through advertising in daily newspapers or through the internet. Good responses are generally obtained through newspapers; however similar results are also gained through private employment agencies along with business colleges who also provide a valuable source (Compton, Nankervis, & Morrissey, 2009).

Skilled jobs are manual labour jobs that require specialised education or training. Skilled labourers tend to remain in one particular field of expertise, where they can continue to gain experience and advance to higher positions. Electricians, technicians and construction equipment operators are common types of labour jobs (Devaney, 2010). Advertising in daily newspapers and through the internet are the most common methods of recruitment. Professional associations and trade union contracts can also be helpful (Compton, Nankervis, & Morrissey, 2009).


In relation to the various methods of recruitment that have been mentioned and discussed, this essay will recommend which method would be more appropriate for the following job posts: (1) A Corporate accountant for an International Car Manufacturer; (2) An Electrical engineer for the London Underground; (3) A Sales assistant at a major supermarket such as Tesco; (4) A trainee Lawyer for a multinational law firm. For each post, this essay will recommend a method that has been mentioned within the academic research and justifies the reasons for the necessity of the recruitment for the specific job role.

A corporate accountant is an advanced position in financial management. General duties include; in depth analysis and reporting of financial activities, budgeting and comparisons, budget forecasts and job costing. Also, for executive accountant positions, reporting to stockholders and board members is crucial (Castano, 2010). Due to the nature of this job role, it can mostly be affiliated with clerical work. As mentioned, clerical work involves a variety of administrative functions and is often set in an office environment. Therefore if an International Car manufacturer wanted to recruit for this particular job role, based on the research, this essay would recommend external recruitment through ads in newspapers, private employment agencies and business colleges to find the most suitable candidate.

Electrical engineers are responsible for the production and use of electricity to generate and supply power. They also design, develop and test the installation and manufacturing of electrical systems, components and equipment for business, commercial, scientific and military use along with circuitry layout and power distribution for industrial machinery (Garner, 2002; Hibma, 2010) This job description is best linked to skilled and manual work. As mentioned, electricians, technicians and construction equipment operators are the most common types of jobs within this field. Therefore, based on research, it can be recommended that the London Underground conduct external recruitment in order to find the right candidate through ads in daily newspapers, the internet or even trade union contracts.

Sales assistants are hired by retail companies to work with customers and promote whatever specific products that company is marketing. Their main duty is to increase sales volumes by explaining the features and benefits of the company's products, answer customer questions and promoting the value of the product. Having good people skills and patience are important requirements for this role. Most sales assistants learn their skills on the job (Mitchell, 2010). Based on the research, it is recommended that Tesco carry out internal recruitment. As no real qualification is required for this role, Tesco can employ internally by promoting shop assistants to sales assistants. This would mean that they recoup the investment they have made in recruiting, selecting, training and developing their current employees and it would be cheap to advertise. However, as mentioned, it may attract unsuitable applicants and should the applicant not be successful, it may affect staff moral which could a pose a problem to Tesco.

After graduating, a candidate lawyer has to start a professional training course within six months and register as a 'trainee lawyer' (Nascimbene & Bergamini, 2009). They work in the legal field, performing a wide array of administrative duties, usually under the supervision of a lawyer. Their general job roles will include conducting research on cases, help clients prepare for trial and also carry out general office duties such as answering phones and sending e-mails. Trainees must possess excellent communication skills, both verbal and written. Additionally, they are required to carry a legal degree or be in the process of pursuing one in college (Amico, 2010). By referring back, this job description can again be affiliated with clerical work. Trainee Lawyers can come across a diverse range of tasks whilst training depending on the needs of the office which ticks all the boxes for this job to be classed as clerical. Therefore, a multinational law firm is recommended to recruit externally but not with all the popular methods mentioned for this approach. As the job requires a degree and aims to attract graduates, it may be more appropriate to focus the search on business colleges as it is a direct source for finding people that have either graduated or in the process of graduating. This is very important as it is one of the main criteria's of the job.


In conclusion, this essay will now sum up all the main points that have been. It is clear through the research conducted that recruitment can be carried out either internally or externally with both methods having their pros and cons. Though internal recruitment can be cheap to advertise and good for staff development, there has to be some consideration towards the idea that the candidates may be unsuitable for the job role even though they may be good in their current roles. This could also prevent the company from bringing in fresh blood which may bring fresh new ideas to the organisation. In contrast, external recruitment allows the opportunity for fresh blood to enter the organisation, but sometimes the right candidate may not apply and may need more time for development. It is also clear that each type of job role may need a different method of recruitment as organisations seek to attract certain type of candidates for their posts which means that they have to post ads in relevant places in order to find those candidates. This was demonstrated within the essay as each of the four posts required a different method of recruitment.