Finding talent is not about who you know, but who knows you.

I was recently doing some research for a client who needs to recruit Fullstack Developers in the Melbourne market. The research was to identify the competitive environment that this organisation was trying to source in. The tech stack was React, Java and AWS. The results were very interesting.

Of all roles advertised for this skill set nationally 50% of the requirements were in Melbourne, while only 40% of the identified candidate market was situated in Melbourne. So on a positive note, Melbourne is a great place to be if you are a Fullstack developer who specialises in React, Java and AWS. However, as an employer of these skill sets, this information presents a different challenge!

Compounding this challenge is a number of enterprise-scale employers are also active in the market for these types of skill sets. These organisations have established in-house recruitment teams, well-funded employment branding initiatives and money to spend on recruitment agencies.

So given this situation, how do you compete as a smaller fish in a very busy talent pool?

You introduce yourself to the talent and you help them to get to know you!

That 40% of candidates that I mentioned from the research was not an insignificant number of people and actually represented a pretty decent talent pool. The challenge is that the vast majority, if not all, are gainfully employed. So if you want to get out in front of the other 60 organisations (minimum) in Melbourne competing for the same Fullstack Developers you need to be front of mind when candidates are thinking of making a career move.

To do this you need to have already reached out to these candidates, established a relationship and clearly articulated what you can do to help them to achieve their career goals or, why they should entertain the idea of you as a potential employer, prior to them deciding to make a career move. In recruitment speak this is known as your Employee Value Proposition or EVP.

An EVP is not all about flexible working conditions, bean bags and free lunches (although there are people that do want those things, less so the bean bags). It is a tailored proposition that addresses the candidates specific career aspirations and needs. It needs to be compelling enough to convince them to engage with your organisation in preference to others.

A compelling EVP is only half the battle. You also need to reinforce the message with ongoing and consistent communication so that you start to build a relationship with the candidate and they get to know you! These types of candidate nurture campaigns have historically been challenging to maintain, however, leveraging the content and processes from your other social media and marketing activities allows you to run nurture campaigns with minimal additional effort or cost.

The value of these types of candidate relationships is significant as they drive both inbound and outbound sourcing activity. If you actively looking for a new hire you already have the contact details of candidates that you can reach out to, who are positively predisposed towards your organisation. And if a candidate decides they want to make a career move they will feel comfortable to approach your organisation to pursue opportunities. A Win/ Win for all parties.


Scott Comte is a Snr Consultant with Crew Talent Advisory, an Australian consulting firm that helps its clients become the businesses that their customers love.

We do this by designing and running internal recruitment programs that allow our clients to hire the people they need to become that business. We help them participate and win in highly competitive talent markets, through insight-led, outcome focussed services.

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