Growing companies are continuously seeking to employ new and more efficient members in their workforce to cater the needs of expanding business. The terms hiring and recruitment refer to the two approaches commonly adopted by companies to attract desired workforce for smooth and successful running of their operations. You might notice these terms being used interchangeably but, infact, the two approaches involve distinct procedures and outcomes.

The hiring is a simple and straight forward procedure in which an organization evaluates and selects a suitable candidate for a vacant position. Recruitment, on the other hand, is an ongoing process that requires rigorous research and selection of top talent for the company whether or not there is a vacant position at the time. These two terms have been evaluated in detail in the article “hiring vs recruitment“. Let’s delve further into their facts.

Definitions and meanings


Hiring is the process of seeking, evaluating and employing new talent when a specific job-post opens up. The process is triggered when a working employee announces his resignation or a new post opens up to cater increasing demand of talent. Thus, it is a needs-based procedure that is only incurred when there is an immediate need to employ. This is usually followed by advertising a vacant job and letting the public know that the company is on a look-out for new workers and/or employees with specific talent and/or skill.

The job can be posted on board, announced during an office meetings, advertised through traditional and social media like LinkedIn, Facebook. Besides these channels, many other websites exist on the internet which have been specifically created for employers. They usually offer both free and paid plans to post jobs and attract talented individuals. Some examples of such sites include Indeed, Glassdoor, Handshake, Jora, Ladders etc.

In response to the job advertisements, potential applicants submit their CVs/resumes to the employer either directly or through above mentioned platforms. The talent management and human resources (HR) team review their CVs/resumes, perform phone or mail screenings and conduct consecutive interviews. The suitable candidates are then selected and employed for the job.

The hiring process is suitable and works well for hiring lower level employees and workers or for filling temporary positions when less is at stake. Under this approach, a large number of applicants match the criteria because little to no specialized skill is required to carry out the available job. Also, the interviews are not so complex and the entire procedure is simple to carry out. Moreover, if a temporary or lower level new hire doesn’t work out, its effect is minimal and the organization can survive the setback.


Recruitment is an ongoing process used to attract, select and retain the best candidates for the company’s operations. It usually begins long before a position opens and needs to be carried out on regular basis. This is why HR managers are on a constant look-out for potential candidates.

They are responsible for creating vast awareness about their company between the talented masses through public relations, networking and social media connections. They also attract and convince specific candidates that their company is a suitable option for their goals and career in life. When human resource (HR) managers find someone matching their core requirements and standards, they reach out and talk to him explaining their company’s culture and the type of talent they are currently looking for. This way they accomplish a list of potential employees in advance who are familiar with the brand and are willing to work for them. It is an optimized way of employing workforce and the company is never under pressure to fill the job roles if an employee suddenly declares to leave them.

Recruitment works well when trying to find employees with a set of specialized skills and capabilities to hold important and permanent positions like management and those responsible for decision making activities.

Since the recruitment involves a long term employment strategy, there are good chances of finding such a candidate whose academic qualification, skill level, talent and experience exactly match with the capabilities required to perform the available job.

Difference between hiring and recruitment

The main points of difference between hiring and recruitment are outlined below.

1. Basic meanings

Hiring is a process through which a vacant position in a company is filled with new talent. While recruitment is a consistent process or long-term strategy through which company finds and employs the top candidates. Talent managers build business connections and compile a list of potential candidates in advance.

2. How is the process started?

The hiring process is triggered when an open position appears in the organization. Since recruitment is based on long-term planning, it is initiated long before an open position appears in the organization.

3. Talent Pool

Hiring is a needs-based process and that is why it is suitable for temporary or lower level positions. The recruitment is ideal for permanent positions and which involve specialized skills and capabilities such as position involving management and/or decision making.

4. Setback inflicted if the process goes wrong

Since hiring usually involves lower level employees, if you hire the wrong person you can readily replace them as the talent pool is available; also it inflicts minimal loss to the company in terms. Since recruitment involves important positions, recruiting the wrong person can inflict long-term damage on the company in terms of time and money.

5. Main drawback/disadvantage

The main drawback of hiring is that it only starts when there is need to fill a vacancy, the HR team may be under severe pressure to find a capable individual to fill the role. The main disadvantage involving recruitment is the heavy investment of time and finances because it involves long-term strategy.

Hiring versus recruitment – tabular comparison

A tabular comparison of hiring and recruitment is given below:

Hiring vs Recruitment
Basic meanings
A process through which a vacant job is filled with new talent. An ongoing process through which new talent is attracted, chosen and retained in the organization
How is the process started?
Triggered when a job vacancy appears. An ongoing process; initiated long before a vacancy appears.
Talent pool
Is ideal for temporary and lower level positions. Is ideal for permanent and higher level positions involving specialized skills.
Setback inflicted if the process goes wrong
Candidates are replaceable and inflict minimal damage on company. Since it involves important positions the company faces major setback by choosing wrong contender.
Main drawback/disadvantage
HR team is under pressure to fill the job-post. Requires heavy investment of time and finances.

Conclusion – Hiring vs Recruitment

Talent managers need to remain calm and not act in haste or desperation. They need to carefully analyze whether to select the hiring or the recruitment process. If the company needs to fill a higher level sophisticated position that requires specialized skills, it can cost the company a significant amount of money. For example, if an unqualified or inappropriate employee is hired, the company will have to start the entire procedure from the beginning or its business will face the long-term consequences.

It is important to note that many distinct factors will impact company’s decision such as the timeline, the qualification and skill-set required and the difficulty-level associated with finding the suitable contender. If you elect the wrong process, the company will be left with lost time, wasted capital or poor talent selection. This is why understanding the difference between hiring and recruitment will help make the correct decisions at the critical moments.