Recruiting on a limited budget, especially in the current market, is a challenge that many HR and In-house recruitment teams continue to face.

Whilst the actual cost of recruitment can vary significantly between organisations and the wide expanse of job roles, many sources claim that the average cost per hire in the UK is between £3,000 and £5,000! 

As the struggle to find top talent continues, organisations are not only becoming increasingly reliant on the support of recruitment agencies but the candidate driven market is also increasing salary expectations. For those recruiting on a limited budget this can present a particularly difficult and highly competitive situation.

If your organisation has suffered as a result of the ‘Great Resignation’ this again increases pressure on an already strained recruitment team. 

Here are our 5 Top Tips for recruiting with a limited budget 

TOP TIP 1:  Understand the actual cost of your recruitment

Before you can start to reduce your recruitment costs, you need to have a solid understanding of what your cost per hire is and the elements that contribute to this figure.  

Recruitment costs should include both the investment of time and money that is required in order to fill a role. Everything from the amount of time you and your team spend managing the recruitment process, through to job board credits and agency placement fees need to be take into consideration. 

Below are just some of the key costs which need to be considered when calculating your cost per hire. 

  • Salary of your recruitment team.
  • Salaries of extra team members involved in the hiring process.
  • Internal commissions or referral bonuses you might have set up.
  • Advertising and online job board costs.
  • Investment of software that you use to hire employees.

TOP TIP 2: Maximise your online presence 

Just as your corporate website is designed to to help sell your products or services and attract new customers, your careers page needs to be optimised in order to promote your employer brand and encourage applications. 

If your current careers page is simply a list of vacancies then you need to consider the fact that potential future employees are actively seeking to find answers to the following types of questions: What can you offer them? What are your company values? What is it like working for you? Why should they choose you over your competitors?

How you optimise your careers page further should again reflect the same principles of your corporate website. Think about the quality of the experience you can offer, how you can promote your organisation in the best possible light and then look to explore how you can promote this via your corporate social media channels. 

A careers page should never be just a list of your current vacancies! 

TOP TIP 3: Capitalise on your current workforce 

Whilst competition remains high in the external jobs market, sometimes you may be able to explore the opportunities available within your current workforce. Managing talent internally, especially to fill more niche and skilled roles can prove much more time and cost effective than trying to recruit for someone entirely new to your organisation. 

Understanding the possible progression and development paths your existing workforce can take, will help reduce the need to recruit for roles more easily filled by those already working with the organisation and with a clear understanding of the role. 

The recent surge in employee referral schemes also indicates that more and more organisations are now turning to the potential power of their current employees as a means of identifying top talent.

Think about how well you are connected with your employees, especially those within the team your are recruiting for. How engaged are they to the company, the role and their colleagues? Employee referrals are much more than simply offering incentives to those who introduce new employees to the organisation but more about ensuring that they too help to promote your organisation as a great place to work. 

TOP TIP 4: Identify cost saving alternatives

It sounds simple, but taking the time to review your activities and identify what platforms actually work for you can help you significantly reduce your recruitment costs. 

Remove any spend on platforms that “you’ve always used’ if they don’t work and focus your attentions on the platforms that generate quality candidates rather than high volumes of poor quality candidates.

Social media recruitment is a highly effective way of targeting passive candidate audiences and can provide much cheaper than traditional job board advertising. 

Agency fees however ultimately remain the most significant contributors to spiralling recruitment costs. According to Agency Central “The cost of a recruitment agency to an employer will really depend on the role being filled. Standard recruitment costs tend to range between 15% and 20% of a candidate’s first annual salary, but this can go as high as 30% for hard to fill positions.” 

For those recruiting on a limited budget, even seeking the support of a recruitment agency on just a couple of roles can quickly eat into your available resource, but if you like the support of an agency then there are more cost effective alternatives that you can consider. 

TOP TIP 5: Think about your processes

One of the biggest costs of recruitment is actually getting it wrong. Whether that be recruiting the wrong people or simply having a process that negatively impacts your recruitment success. 

Actually applying for your role and putting yourself in the candidate’s shoes is possibly one of the easiest and most effective ways to understand any potential barriers or challenges that your candidates may consider as a reason to abort their application. 

When you consider the fact that 60% of job seekers will quit filling out an application due to its length or complexity. ( that’s a lot of potential expenditure on advertising that could be being lost simply due to the application process. 

As organisations become under increasing pressure to fill vacancies its also vital to make sure that the necessary steps are taken to make sure that every recruit is the right candidate for the job. Even when time is of the essence, making sure the right checks have been done and actually investing time and money into conducting online tests can ultimately save you in the long run. 

Whilst 2022 is set to be a challenging year for inhouse recruitment teams across the UK, for those facing the additional constraints of recruiting on a limited budget it’s time to get resourceful and more innovate with their approach to recruitment. 

networx support hundreds of organisations nationwide, some with extensive budgets and some with extremely limited budgets to optimise the success of their recruitment. Find out more today. 

Back to blog page

Book a call to find out how we can innovate your recruitment