How recruiters can harness data – what lies behind recruitment data?

Why collect data on recruitment?

Recruitment should always support a company’s wider business strategy but, sadly, many businesses still see recruitment as an expense item. 

If we continue to justify recruitment investment using only ‘soft values’, the devaluation of recruitment will continue. Recruiters and HR need to wake up to the fact that recruiters are doing meaningful and productive work, and that it is possible to collect hard data from their work. Recruitment data can be used to justify recruitment spend and the data itself can lead to useful commercial conclusions. Equip yourself with data to be one step ahead of the competition.

Where is your recruitment data hiding?

At Finders Seekers we always use recruitment data to help us ace our IT recruitment strategies. For us, collecting and tracking data is an integral part of our standard recruitment process. We collect and group recruitment data everytime we conduct candidate searches. As part of our direct search service, we provide you with a detailed Talent Attraction report based on harvested recruitment data. 

We compare your recruitment data against industry averages to see what we need to develop further: both within your organization and at our end.

Data helps us pinpoint the areas on which we need to focus on.

What does recruitment data tell you?

The data obtained from the direct search process can tell us valuable information about your company’s employer brand, the number of candidates within a specific talent segment, candidate experience levels, and the prevailing recruitment market mood. 

In this blog post, I will hone in on recruitment data obtained from direct search methods. In today’s landscape, using job ads is a tough way to get good IT professionals, especially for hands-on roles like developers. If you’re getting relatively experienced coders applying for your open positions, you’re clearly doing well on the recruitment marketing side.

From one thousand down to eight

The direct search process typically begins with a comprehensive survey of the talent market. After a quick Boolean search, you will usually end up with less than 1,000 suitable candidates for a specific talent profile in Finland. If you find that you are unearthing only a few hundred, or even worse, only a few dozen suitable experts based on your LinkedIn searches, we are talking about very niche skills.

If this is the scenario you find yourself in, it’s worth being particularly strategic and considering how the pool of potential candidates could be expanded.

In our direct search projects, we contact an average of 60 of the best candidates from a well-defined Boolean search. If the job specs are accurate and we have correctly understood your company and the benefits of the advertised role, an average of eight solid candidates will emerge from this first round.

From these figures you can infer things like how aware your talent segment is of your company, and whether you’re perceived as an attractive employer. The number of people we have to contact will be higher if your company is not known and respected by the talent pool or, even worse, your company has a bad reputation. Of course, the number of contacts is also dependent on the recruiter’s professionalism, their networks, and their ability to tailor the message to the recipient so that they feel the message is aimed at them.

From eight down to three

What happens to those eight potentially interested candidates? In talent attraction recruitment, we believe in the same “eight touchpoints” rule from sales and marketing: people have to hear about a specific opportunity eight times before making a final purchase decision. After an initial contact, we continue conversations with candidates over the phone.

These initial phone conversations reveal pretty quickly whether the offered position really matches the candidate’s competency level, and whether they are happy where they are right now. We meet five of these candidates face-to-face over a cup of coffee. And then you will get to meet the best three.

When you are an attractive employer to the talent pool, the numbers will tell a different story. You can use data to ensure that only really aligned and interested people make it down the pipeline and through your screening processes.

Recruitment data also allows for a more granular analysis of why some candidates drop off during the screening phase. One common reason for decreased interest is a low pay grade. But we will warn you about potential issues like that from the start!


When presented with three great candidates, it should be relatively easy for you to pick the one who is going to be just right for you. And then we can start to benchmark your recruitment data against the industry average to develop a Talent Acquisition strategy that pinpoints any bottlenecks. 

💡 Do you feel that there is still some room for improvement when it comes to your company’s recruitment processes? We offer out recruitment experts on a consultant basis to help support your in-house recruitment team and  and develop your company’s recruitment processes.

💡 If you need a recruitment partner, get in touch with Anni Helinen, 0505493166, [email protected].