You can have robust strategies in place to source candidates, but if the talent doesn’t exist, you are not going to find it. Truly understanding your talent landscape is essential if you want to achieve solid business results. Here are three questions you should ask to get a better lay of the land:

1.    What skills do we need to meet our business objectives?

Organizations often overstuff their job descriptions with skills that would be nice to have, but are ultimately unnecessary to meet core business objectives. And while it certainly behooves a company to weed out unqualified candidates, doing so at this stage often narrows your focus to a detrimental extent. Whittling required skills down to absolute necessities expands your pool of candidates while opening a pipeline of potentials you can leverage to fill future positions.

Understanding your talent landscape is essential if you want to achieve solid business results.

2.    Do we need to reconsider or adjust our requirements?

Once you have narrowed down the skills you need for your open positions, it is important to carefully review the other requirements you have listed for these roles. Paula Parfitt, Cielo’s Senior Vice President of Europe, recently penned an article for The Guardian where she pointed out that women are less likely to apply for roles with long job descriptions and won’t apply at all if they do not meet each and every criteria – unlike men. So it is essential to be mindful of these things when developing your recruitment materials and job descriptions. It could open up doors to more gender diversity at your organization.

3.    Is the talent available where I need it?

Hiring organizations tend to look locally to fill their open positions. This is not always possible for roles that require niche, or very technical, skillsets. If your organization is located in a capital city or the Silicon Valley, you can be sure that highly technical talent exists in your area. However, if you are based in a more remote location, that may not be the case. To make sure your expectations are realistic, partner with an organization that can provide local intelligence on your talent market, or do the legwork on your own. Also consider different work models – such as having remote employees. Without taking these things into consideration, those requisitions could remain open for a very long time.