Why You Should Recruit Internally

Two men shaking hands, after one of them offers the other a new position at the company.

When you have a high-priority job opening that you need to fill quickly, it’s helpful to recruit internally before evaluating a large pool of external candidates. One of your team members might have the skills, experience, and desire to take on a new challenge at your company.

One of the main advantages of internal recruiting is that you have more resources for evaluating whether a candidate is a good fit for the role. While certain elements of the hiring process are similar, like writing a job posting and reviewing resumes, there are key differences that can make the process more effective and efficient.

You can take these steps to build your internal hiring process:

  1. Write a job description
  2. Promote your job posting
  3. Evaluate internal candidates
  4. Onboard internal hires

What is Internal Recruiting?

It’s when you fill job openings with current employees instead of hiring someone from outside your company. You may promote employees to higher positions or encourage employees to make lateral moves.

What are the Benefits?

There are many advantages for your company when you recruit internally, including:

Fill Roles Faster

When you hire internally, you have more resources for evaluating candidates. You can look at their past performance reviews, speak to their manager and peers, and review projects they’ve completed.

The external recruitment process typically takes more time because you need to reach candidates, screen resumes and cover letters, schedule interviews, and call references. You may want to have multiple interview rounds with each candidate before deciding, which could take weeks or months.

When you’re filling a high-priority role, there is pressure to hire quickly. You know more about an internal hire so there is less of a risk that it could be the wrong fit and that you’d have to restart the hiring and training process.

Reduce Hiring and Onboarding Costs

It can be expensive and time-consuming to recruit and onboard candidates. In addition to recruiting costs, you may have to offer a higher salary to attract external candidates.

You will probably need to provide more trainings and be patient as the new employee acclimates to the role and company. When you recruit internally, the employee will likely need to learn or improve some skills, but they will have more institutional knowledge and a better understanding of the company culture.

Increased Employee Engagement

Instead of looking for new opportunities outside the company, employees who want to advance or make a lateral move can apply internally. You show that you value your employees and are committed to helping them succeed.

As a result, your company is likely to have higher employee morale and engagement. Companies with high employee morale and engagement are often more profitable than the competition because of factors including higher quality work, greater productivity, and increased employee retention.

How Do You Recruit Internally?

Now that you know the benefits of this hiring method, you’re ready to set up your process. Here are the main steps:

1.Write a Job Description

Even though you plan to hire internally, you’ll still want to write a job description. A detailed job description will give internal candidates the information they need to determine whether they have the necessary skills and experience and are excited about the role.

You’ll also need a job description if you decide to post the job externally to expand your hiring pool. With a well-written job description in place, hiring managers will have a clear method for evaluating internal and external candidates.

2. Promote Your Job Posting

Make sure your employees know about your job openings by using an internal job board, posting them on the intranet, including them in internal newsletters, and mentioning them at all-team meetings. Ask managers to encourage employees who’d be a good fit to apply.

Have internal applicants apply through your applicant tracking system (ATS) and send their resume to the hiring manager directly so it doesn’t get lost in the shuffle.

3. Evaluate Internal Candidates

Have your hiring managers start by considering a candidate’s resume and performance reviews and, if it’s relevant, looking at work samples. If candidates are moving up or making a career shift, they may not have all the skills and experience listed in the job description – but that doesn’t mean they won’t be able to succeed in the role.

Remind hiring managers to consider the candidate’s soft skills like work ethic, adaptability, and leadership skills. Employees with a growth mindset should be able to learn new skills and excel at new responsibilities quickly.

Hiring managers might want to meet with any candidates they haven’t worked closely with to learn more about their skills and career goals. When you recruit internally, it’s helpful to ask revealing interview questions such as:

  • What excited you about this opportunity?
  • What skills and experiences did you gain from previous roles that would make you successful in this one?
  • How would this role help you accomplish your main long- and short-term career goals?

4. Onboard Internal Hires

Your lawyer may recommend you send an offer letter with the details of the new position like the title, salary, start date, benefits, and manager. The internal hire has the advantage of having a professional support network and knowing how the company operates, but they may not be familiar with their new role or team.

Ask their new manager to meet with them to discuss their new responsibilities, provide relevant trainings, and discuss short- and long-term goals and objectives. They should also make introductions if the internal hire is joining a brand-new team.

Continue to Strengthen Your HR Practices

When you recruit internally, you’re likely to see increased employee retention, morale, and performance, making your business more successful. Keep strengthening your company culture and performance by implementing expert-recommended hiring and management advice from Monster.