Talent Acquisition Partner
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What Is a Talent Acquisition Partner?
Talent acquisition partners (or “TA partners”) are professionals whose focus is helping companies find, attract and hire top talent. Typically reporting into a company’s human resources (HR) department, TA partners act as the main point of contact for both candidates and hiring managers throughout the talent acquisition (or “TA”) life cycle.
Talent Acquisition Partners vs. Recruiters
Similar to recruiters, TA partners execute various recruitment functions, such as sourcing candidates, interviewing job applicants, and extending job offers. However, there are some notable differences between the two.
Recruiters work to fill a company’s live vacancies and typically focus on immediate hiring needs. While recruiters can certainly be strategic, they aren’t usually responsible for developing long-term talent strategies and processes.
Talent acquisition partners are not only focused on recruitment but work to optimize a company’s overall talent acquisition function. In addition to recruitment, TA partners often own some or all aspects of:
- Developing talent-related processes, practices and strategies
- Candidate experience management
- Hiring Manager advisory
- Employer branding
- Tracking and reporting on talent-related metrics
- Drafting job descriptions
- Workforce planning and forecasting
Key Responsibilities and Duties of a Talent Acquisition Partner
Like any other role, the exact duties of a TA partner will vary by company. If you are thinking about hiring a talent acquisition partner or would like to become one, here is a breakdown of the typical duties of someone in this role:
Sourcing and Recruitment
- Market open positions via the company’s careers page and job boards such as Indeed, Monster, and ZipRecruiter
- Source candidates utilizing social media, resume databases, Boolean searches, industry contacts, professional networks, etc.
- Engage with active and passive talent and connect them to current job opportunities
- Prescreen candidates via phone, video, and/or in-person interviews
- Evaluate applicants and submit top candidates for hiring manager review
- Schedule interviews with hiring managers and other stakeholders
- Anticipate future talent needs and work to develop pools of passive candidates to fill vacancies
- Partner with hiring managers to identify recruitment needs and candidate “must haves” and draft job descriptions
- Communicate with interview panels to ensure preparedness during the interview process
- Partner with hiring managers to identify competency questions for interview consistency and quality
- Work closely with business leaders to influence effective recruiting approaches and set realistic expectations on time to fill, compensation, candidate pool quality, and market feedback
- Provide training and coaching to hiring managers and junior recruiting staff
- Collaborate with marketing, human resources and business leaders to establish an employer brand identity
- Manage the company’s profiles on Glassdoor, LinkedIn, and other talent-related websites
- Build awareness and promote recruiting efforts through social media channels such as Facebook or Twitter
- Work with marketing to develop advertisement materials, such as flyers, digital media, and promotional products
- Build and maintain positive relationships with external agencies, colleges, vendors, associations, and other bodies who might route talent to the organization or aid in TA processes
- Manage candidate expectations and engage talent throughout the hiring process
- Collaborate with human resources and business leaders to design the company’s hiring process, from application to hire
- Communicate regularly with candidates
- Perform research to evaluate the general needs and opinions of talent
- Draft and utilize templates for TA communications, such as application received messages, knockout notices, interview requests, rejection emails, and offer letters
Process Improvement and Development
- Partner with business leaders to develop talent acquisition practices, processes and systems
- Track and report on talent acquisition metrics, such as time-to-fill, offer acceptance rate, cost per hire, etc.
- Work to ensure diverse, inclusive, and equitable hiring practices
- Oversee the completion of various talent acquisition projects and initiatives
Looking for a New Career? How to Become a Talent Acquisition Partner
If you enjoy working with people and helping others and like the idea of having a major impact on business success, you may enjoy being a talent acquisition partner! While a career in talent acquisition can be rewarding, you’ll need several things in order to become a TA partner.
Although it is possible to become a talent acquisition partner with a high school diploma, the majority of TA partners have a bachelor’s degree in business administration, human resources, or a similar area. It’s worthwhile to note, however, that one can become a talent acquisition partner with a degree in just about anything.
While there are many routes to becoming a talent acquisition partner, gaining experience in full-cycle recruitment is critical. Many TA partners have worked in recruiting or human resources, and anywhere from two to eight years of experience in recruiting, sourcing, marketing or HR is typically required.
There are many certification programs for TA professionals to choose from. While not required for a career in talent acquisition, a certification can set you apart from other candidates. Some bodies where you can obtain certification in the United States include:
- AIRS. Providing in-depth training on all areas of recruitment since 1997, AIRS offers multiple certifications to choose from. Some of the most popular certifications include:
- HR Certification Institute (HRCI). While more targeted toward human resources professionals as a whole, the HRCI has several certifications which TA professionals may find worthwhile. Some of the most popular are:
- Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM). The “voice of all things work,” SHRM offers several certifications geared toward HR professionals. In addition, they offer a talent acquisition specialty credential aimed at TA professionals:
- Human Capital Institute (HCI). An educational body aimed at making HR professionals more strategic, the HCI offers several certification courses which may be valuable to TA practitioners:
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Questions You’ve Asked Us About Talent Acquisition Partners
Preston is a senior talent partner with experience building and leading recruiting functions for healthcare, education, and tech companies. Presently, he is the head of talent acquisition at Parallel Learning.
Preston holds several certifications. In addition to sourcing and recruiting, Preston specializes in talent strategy, candidate experience, hiring process design, recruitment marketing, and onboarding.
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