What Are Candidate Personas and Why Are They Important For Recruiting?

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A candidate persona is a semi-fictional profile of the ideal candidate for a job. The persona is created by using industry research, hiring trends, and other data. 

Basics of Creating Candidate Personas

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A candidate persona template includes 8 parts. Those parts are a catchy and identifiable name, demographics, background, candidate experience, skill sets, career goals, objections, and watering holes. 


The catchy and identifiable name might end up coming last in the process. Usually, the name follows the format of Job Title Common First Name. 

Examples of candidate persona names are "Marketing Mary" or "Customer Experience Chloe." While this is not the most important part of the candidate persona, it makes it clever and stands out when discussing them. 


For the background of a candidate persona, it will include where the ideal hire works now, the qualifications they have, and what degree they have attained. 

This may include demographic information about the target candidate but ensure that this does not go against being an equal opportunity employer. 

Candidate Experience

The experience section dives deeper into the years of experience they have, and the main higher-level tasks involved in those experiences.

Skill Set

The skillset section is where you get more specific. Do you want a job candidate who is an excellent oral communicator? Will your best candidate have managed team members for 2 years? This section can also include personality traits and 

Career Goals

These are the short and long-term goals you want your perfect candidate to have. By understanding these goals, the hiring managers can accurately promote your open role as one that will match their career goals. 


It is important to note that while this candidate persona is someone who would take this job, there might be some hesitancies or issues. These should be noted and considered throughout the process.

Watering Hole

This place is for identifying where your candidate spends their time. Examples of this are Facebook groups and conferences.

Why Candidate Personas are Crucial for Recruiters?

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Recruiting is much more than posting open roles on the job boards with a job description, and then waiting around for the right candidates to apply. 

Recruiting is complicated and competitive. In 2016, 65% of recruiters said there was a talent shortage. Therefore, talent acquisition is important in the recruiting process.

Creating a candidate persona optimizes time, money, and efforts in the hiring process. 

Scholars can change how you communicate with your candidates by integrating employer branding into your recruiting strategy. Schedule a demo with a member of the Scholars team and read the Scholars resources for recruitment marketing such as webinars, case studies, and the blog for employers.


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