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7 Tried and Tested Recruiting Tips for Hard-to-Fill Roles

Unlock success in filling challenging roles with 7 proven recruiting tips. From targeted sourcing to innovative outreach, elevate your hiring strategy and overcome recruitment hurdles effectively.


$25,000 per month. 

That's the average cost businesses bear for every unfilled position they have. If you hire for a more complex or leadership role, this cost will only increase.

Leaving critical positions unfilled not only impacts your revenue but can significantly affect the day-to-day operations of a business.

In this case, existing employees might be restructured to work on core projects, or your organization might even have to take on lesser projects, limiting revenue and the scope of growth. 

So, is there really no solution to this? There is, and there are many. The secret is choosing and applying the right strategy for those hard-to-fill positions. 

In this article, we will discuss seven of the best, tried, and tested tips for hard-to-fill roles you can adopt for your organization.

What makes a position hard to fill?

Before we dive into the solutions, let's understand the common reasons why some positions prove more difficult to fill than others:

  • Specific or niche requirements

Sometimes, a specific vacancy might require a specific or unique skill set, certifications, or experience that's limited in the available talent pool. 

For example, a cybersecurity engineer position in your company may require expertise in niche areas such as blockchain security, limiting the available talent pool.

  • Undesirable location

A lack of remote work options or an undesirable physical location (e.g., a remote town with limited amenities) can significantly limit your candidate pool.

  • Compensation shortcomings 

An uncompetitive salary or benefits package compared to the market average can deter qualified candidates. The salary package can also differ based on the organization and the roles and responsibilities, which are usually not taken into consideration.

  • Job description woes

Unclear or overly broad job descriptions leave candidates confused and uninspired, leading to a lack of applications. For instance, a vague description for a marketing position that lists multiple unrelated responsibilities may discourage qualified candidates.

  • Poor employer branding

A weak employer brand or negative company culture reputation (think long hours and stressful work environment) can make it difficult to attract quality candidates.

7 recruitment strategies for hard-to-fill positions

Here are seven recruitment strategies you can adopt for those hard-to-fill positions:

1. Craft a compelling and targeted job description

Creating a job description sounds easy, and now with the availability of AI applications such as ChatGPT, you can churn out hundreds of descriptions in under a minute. 

But can they attract the right talent? Maybe not.

A job description is meant to meet an organization's needs, and according to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), it should accurately reflect the workforce activities.

Therefore, it's essential to focus on the impact of the position in your organization and how it aligns with the company's broader goals.

Here are a few best practices to follow while crafting job descriptions:

  • Using clear, straightforward wording can help convey the responsibilities and requirements of the role
  • Highlight the most important duties and qualifications for the position. Don't make the description lengthy. Instead, focus on the essential skills and experience
  • Use relevant keywords related to the job title, industry, and specific skills to improve visibility in online searches and attract candidates with the right expertise
  • Don't forget to provide insights into the company's culture, mission, and values. Likely, some candidates might not have known your organization previously
  • Be transparent about your expectations upfront. 96% of job seekers prefer companies that are transparent. Be it regarding work hours, location (remote or onsite), travel requirements, or even compensation. Transparency helps manage candidate expectations and reduces the likelihood of misunderstandings later on

AI-driven recruitment automation platform Kula offers its cutting-edge Applicant Tracking System (ATS) that can help you create customized job descriptions quickly. With this tool, you can:

  • Streamline your candidate experience: Easily create branded career pages, emails, candidate portals, and offer letters without coding knowledge

  • Attract candidates on the go: Provide a seamless mobile experience, allowing candidates to search jobs, view content, and apply directly from their smartphones

2. Expand your sourcing methods

Traditional job boards are just the tip of the job boards. To source and hire top talent, you need to cast a wide net. Here's how you can do that:

  • There are thousands of relevant job boards out there that go unexplored by most recruiters. Platforms such as LinkedIn and Indeed are popular among candidates and recruiters alike., so don't forget to make the best use of them

Kula ATS can help you utilize the platform's built-in LinkedIn Recruiter System Connect (RSC) integration. This helps streamline your workflow and allows you to access a broader range of qualified candidates on LinkedIn.

  • Go beyond the norm and look for industry-specific or career-specific platforms to help you connect and engage with the right audience

Kula's ATS simplifies this process by offering one-click job distribution to over 100+ pre-integrated job boards, including international, niche, and diversity boards. This ensures your job postings reach the most relevant talent pool.

  • Partner with academic institutions with programs aligned with your required skillsets. This allows you to tap into fresh talent and build a pipeline of future recruits
  • Attending conferences, workshops, and events is a fantastic way to connect with potential candidates in a more personal setting. You can showcase your company culture and engage with qualified professionals actively seeking new opportunities
  • Create and market a strong employer brand that resonates with potential candidates, even those not actively searching for a new job

Kula ATS also helps you nurture candidate relationships by allowing you to create and schedule branded email campaigns directly within the platform. This increases your talent pool by attracting passive candidates who might be open to the right opportunity.

3. Offer a competitive compensation and benefits package

Did you know that only 13.5% of job postings have any wage information? There could be many reasons for recruiters or employers to withhold salary or compensation details from a job posting. 

However, candidates like to know the compensation range upfront in order to make an informed decision.

To ensure your offer is attractive and positions you to secure top talent, you can follow these steps:

  • Conduct thorough research on salary benchmarks for similar positions in your location and industry. Utilize resources like the Bureau of Labor Statistics and others to understand how compensation impacts the quality and quantity of your applicant pool

While a competitive salary is crucial, a well-rounded benefits package can significantly enhance your offer. Consider offering benefits like:

  • Comprehensive health insurance plans are a top priority for many candidates
  • Offer generous paid time off policies, including vacation days, sick leave, and personal days
  • Invest in your employees' growth by providing opportunities for skill development and career advancement
  • Consider offering additional perks like flexible work arrangements, remote work options, wellness programs, and tuition reimbursement

Don't leave candidates guessing about your compensation and benefits package. Clearly outline the details within the job description. 

4. Streamline your application process

Complex hiring assignments, long interview process, and multiple stages of hiring. Sounds familiar? If this is the practice you adopt for your job vacancies, then it is time to rethink and restructure it.

Instead, here's what you need to focus on:

  • Reduce the number of application steps required. Aim for a smooth and efficient process that gets candidates into the system quickly
  • Offer various ways to apply, such as a user-friendly online form on a career page with a resume upload option or even social media applications

If you are using Kula ATS, you can easily promote vacancies on social media, including Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The best part? As noted before, you can build a custom career portal that integrates with your website.

  • Provide clear and concise instructions throughout the application process. Outline what's expected and what happens next. Remember, communication is key. Don't leave candidates in the dark
  • Communicate realistic timelines throughout the hiring process. Let candidates know when they can expect to hear back, even if it's just an update

5. Leverage employee referrals

Your employees can be your greatest asset in finding top talent. Here's how to leverage their networks:

  • Implement an employee referral program that incentivizes successful referrals. This motivates employees to share open positions within their networks and recommend qualified candidates
  • Encourage employees to share open positions on their social media platforms and within their professional networks, such as LinkedIn
  • Implement a user-friendly system that allows employees to easily refer candidates. Streamline the process to encourage participation

This is also one of the promising features of Kula's ATS. Employees can submit their referrals to the openings available, and as a recruiter, you can monitor the referral's progress directly from the referral portal. 

You can even generate a unique referral link to share a specific job on social networks, email, or as part of a referral campaign. You also get a dedicated referrals dashboard to track your top referrers.

6. Highlight brand and company culture

A strong employer brand is a powerful recruitment tool. And in the current job market, you need to run that extra mile to nudge candidates contemplating a new job or a change. Here are a few tips:

  • Don't just list job openings. Use the careers page to share employee testimonials, highlight positive work environment aspects, and all things positive
  • Boost your social media presence to highlight your company culture. Don't shy away from showcasing employee stories on your company profile
  • Clearly define your Employer Value Proposition (EVP). What do you offer (compensation, benefits, culture) in exchange for employee contributions?
  • Ensure your EVP aligns with your employer brand and reflects reality. Deliver on promises to maintain a positive employer reputation

7. Employ specialized recruiting software or tools 

When it comes to filling hard-to-fill positions, having the right tools can make all the difference. Here's how specialized recruiting software like Kula can revolutionize your hiring process:

  • Employing efficient ATS software allows you to manage applications effectively by centralizing candidate information, resumes, and communications in one organized platform

With Kula, you can easily track each candidate's progress through the hiring pipeline, from the application to the offer stage. This way, you can deliver a positive candidate experience with automation at every step.

  • Integrating your ATS with a CRM (Candidate Relationship Management) allows you to build and nurture relationships with candidates over time. They also help strengthen the employer brand, improve candidate engagement, and create a pipeline of qualified candidates for hard-to-fill positions
  • Skills-based assessments also provide valuable insights into candidates' qualifications and abilities beyond what is listed on their resumes. By incorporating assessments tailored to the specific requirements of the position, recruiters can more accurately evaluate candidates' suitability for the role

Key Takeaway

Successfully filling hard-to-fill positions requires a strategic approach that differs from organization to organization.

The key is to adapt and innovate. Remember to continuously monitor and refine your strategies, learning from both successes and setbacks. 

If you are ready to tackle your hiring challenges head-on, start implementing these strategies today with Kula by your side.

Want to optimize your recruitment strategy and fill those hard-to-find positions with ease? Try Kula and see the difference. 

Book a demo today to learn more and get started!

Sandra Rachel Oommen

Content Marketer

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