New colleagues don’t come by themselves, that’s how you recruit them anyway

The need in every industry is great. Which organization is not looking for new colleagues? You tell me† That is why it is all the more important to approach this process tactically and thoughtfully. Quickly throwing a vacancy online and hoping that they will come naturally is a thing of the past.

In the last quarter of 2021, there were no fewer than 387 thousand vacancies in the Netherlands. Say what? Yes really. There were also 307 thousand unemployed. If you do a quick calculation, this means 105 vacancies out of 100 unemployed. Trade, business services and healthcare are leading the way with a total of 196 thousand vacancies (CBS, 2022† Conclusion: it is a serious problem. How can you approach your recruitment process during this time? I will take you into our experiences.

Start with your current employees

Even if you need new colleagues, always start with your current employees. They are your experts and know best what it’s like to work in your organization. Ask as diverse a group of employees as possible to name nice, but also less nice things in their work.

If you find this exciting to do yourself, you can also outsource it to an agency. Practice shows that employees then dare to talk more freely. And don’t stop when you ask: what do you think of the atmosphere? And the answer is: very good! New. You want to know what that means and what could possibly make it even better. In this way you arrive at concrete points and you know what you are good at as an employer, but also what is sometimes lacking.

Do extra research

You have collected all the input from your own employees. Do you now know who your ideal candidate is? Almost. It is also always good to delve deeper into the target group. Perhaps your ideal candidate is a construction worker with an average age of 33 from the Ermelo area. But what if that group of construction workers is very small?

That is why it is good to carry out additional research. Learn the demographics of your ideal candidate. We often use the websites and There may be many more construction workers of 45+ in your area, so it would be a shame to forget them. Also find out why construction workers often leave an organization, what they need to stay and what they earn on average. So many studies have already been done, so make the most of it!

Create characters

On a roll. You have already collected a lot of data about your target group. Whether you can finally start with the vacancy text? Yes, you could, but this step can make it even easier for you. You now know a lot about your ideal candidate. Perhaps you have expanded your search area to, for example, construction workers who live within a radius of 30 kilometers around Ermelo. You know why a construction worker would drop out, what the average age is and what his/her interests are. Time to pour this into a persona, too The candidate canvas called.

What does such a persona look like?

  • Name – it is important to also give your persona a name, that works more pleasantly in mutual communication and that makes it even more alive.
  • Age – can also be a range
  • residence
  • Educations)
  • Family situation – this way you can also take into account influencing parties such as a partner, parent/guardian or friends.
  • Average salary
  • interests
  • Past jobs
  • Skills
  • Social media use – this way you know on which channels you can post the vacancy

You can add a lot more to a persona, but these are the most important parts for now. You can always place this canvas next to your vacancy or other communication to check whether it will appeal to your target group.

Write a unique vacancy

Yes, we have finally arrived at the step that you might normally start with right away: the vacancy. You now know exactly what your ideal candidate needs, what he might turn off and what he wants to earn on average. You put this in your vacancy text. Also tell the lesser sides of the position or what the candidate should also take into account. In this way you filter out candidates who may leave early for (one of) these reasons.

You have also received insights from your own organization and you can describe exactly what is unique about working for you. Perhaps you find certain things very normal, but you have discovered that you are unique in this or that your employees appreciate this extra. Here you can always go the extra mile by thinking about striking fringe benefits. For example, you can give your employees two days off a year to do voluntary work or offer an extra high mileage allowance. Sometimes it’s the little things that make you stand out.

Do I have an example? Secure. Before that, I dug into the job boards in the region and came across De Boterlap Groep from Ermelo/Harderwijk. Their job postings are brilliant. Take as an example the vacancy for a cook† The vacancy text is creative, they are honest by also mentioning the disadvantages and you immediately feel like working there?

To zoom out a bit more, I also looked at the vacancy texts from† These were no different than expected: creative and eye-catching. They also name reasons why you don’t want to work there. This is stated in the recognizable house style that we know from This way you create recognisability and transparency.

Example disadvantages in vacancy


And how do I make sure that the right people see this vacancy?

You know on which platforms your ideal candidate is active. So: make sure you are visible there to potential new colleagues! You can reinforce this by packaging your vacancy in a creative campaign, but that is a completely different topic, which I will tell you more about in a future article. Do you have any questions or any unique tips for me? Be sure to let us know in the comments.

Source: Frankwatching by

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