The complete recruitment lifecycle is actually fairly complex. There are many steps between determining you need to hire a new employee and a new hire reaching full productivity as an official member of your permanent staff.

By exploring each of the recruiting lifecycle phases, you can better understand the nuances of hiring. With that in mind, here’s an overview of each stage and what it entails.

Requirements Identification

The first step in the recruitment process is identifying and defining your hiring needs. This includes reviewing the job description for accuracy, determining the must-have requirements based on that information, and otherwise defining your ideal candidate.

Job Ad Creation

Once you identify your requirements, you can craft vacancy announcements. These job ads initially present the opportunity to candidates, essentially marketing your position to active and passive job seekers who possess the skills, experience, and credentials you want to find.

Candidate Sourcing

Sourcing candidates involves locating professionals who may excel in the role. This can include those actively seeking out new opportunities or passive job seekers who are open to a change but aren’t necessary dissatisfied with their current position.

In most cases, candidate sourcing takes place on a variety of platforms. Posting open positions on company career pages, job boards, and social media pages are all part of the process. Having a recruiter contact professionals who they identify during web-based searches (such as through LinkedIn) is also frequently used to source. Similarly, scanning your applicant database or professional network for potential matches and reaching out directly is another viable technique.

Resume or Profile Screening

As candidates are sourced, their employment history, skills, education, and other credentials need to be reviewed to see if they are strong matches to your requirements. The goal is to determine if the job seeker has enough of the qualifications to move forward in the process based on the information available.

Formal Interviews and Assessments

The interview phase can be somewhat varied depending on the nature of the position and your exact needs. For entry-level roles, a single round of in-person interviews may be sufficient, particularly if you have a handful of strong candidates and are reasonably sure that at least one is a good fit.

However, if the position is more complex or upper-level, a multi-round approach may be a better option. For example, you might conduct a phone screening interview to confirm certain details and then only invite the strongest contenders to come in for in-person interviews. If the role is highly technical, then a technical interview or other skill assessments might be necessary.

For higher-level roles, the candidates might interview with a direct supervisor first. Then, the top two or three may come in for a separate interview with an upper-level manager.

Regardless of the approach, the goal during this phase is to meet the candidates and determine which is the best fit. Gathering specific details about their capabilities and assessing their soft skills or personalities also occurs during the interview stage, allowing you to determine which candidate has the ability to excel in the job and mesh with your culture.

Offer Presentation

Once the top candidate is identified, a job offer will need to be presented. In many cases, the initial offer is presented verbally and is followed up with a written offer. It includes compensation details, including the salary, benefits package, and perks, as well as other facets of the arrangement, such as whether the position is full- or part-time.

Job Offer Negotiation

In some cases, a candidate will agree to the first offer. However, at times, the job seeker will initiate a negotiation instead of accepting immediately.

Various aspects of the offer might be open for negotiation. While salary is usually the first area discussed, benefits, perks, start dates, work hours, and nearly any other job detail could come up.

Conditional Terms Satisfaction

Typically, either the screening phase or job offer include a variety of conditional terms. This could consist of drug and alcohol screening requirements, background checks, reference checks, or other factors that could cause an offer to be rescinded or changed or the candidate to be removed from contention.

Precisely when this phase occurs depends on how your company structures its hiring process. However, it is a fundamental part of the recruitment lifecycle, and should never be skipped.

Official Hiring

After the conditional terms are satisfied, a finalized offer or formal job acceptance is the next step. This makes the candidate’s decision official, showing that all points have been agreed upon and that a start date is scheduled.


While many would assume that the recruitment process ends when the person accepts the job, that isn’t the case. The full lifecycle of recruiting also includes the onboarding process, ensuring that the candidate is adequately acclimated and otherwise set up for success.

During the onboarding process, the new hire learns about any expectations, is introduced to their team, and given access to the tools, technologies, or equipment they need to manage their duties. New employee paperwork is also completed at this time, ensuring all critical documents are completed.

Training and Probation

After onboarding, the recruitment lifecycle still isn’t finished. If there is a training protocol for new hires, it is part of the process as well.

Similarly, if the new hire has to complete a probationary period, that is also an aspect of full lifecycle recruiting. Until the probationary period is over, a new hire usually isn’t viewed as being a permanent part of the team, so it needs to be completed as well.

Ultimately, the full lifecycle of recruiting is much more involved than many realize. If you’d like to find out more, the professionals at Cloutera can help. Contact us to discuss your questions with a member of our team today and see how our expertise can benefit you.




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