What is Lateral Recruitment?

Meaning & Definition

Lateral Recruitment

Lateral recruitment, also known as lateral hiring, refers to the process of hiring individuals to fill specific job positions or roles within an organization from outside the company, typically at a similar or higher level of responsibility and expertise. In other words, it involves bringing in experienced professionals or talent who have a track record of working in similar roles, often in other organizations or industries.

Key points to understand about lateral recruitment include:

  • Experience and Expertise

Lateral hires are typically sought after for their experience, expertise, and proven skills in a particular field or job role. They are expected to have the knowledge and capabilities to contribute immediately and effectively to the organization.

  • Targeted Hiring

Lateral recruitment is usually targeted to fill specific positions that require specialized skills or experience, especially in situations where there is a shortage of qualified internal candidates.

  • Diversity of Perspective

Organizations often use lateral recruitment to bring in fresh perspectives and ideas from individuals who have worked in different environments or industries, which can contribute to innovation and problem-solving.

  • Speed and Efficiency

Lateral recruitment can be a faster and more efficient way to fill positions compared to promoting or developing internal candidates who may not have the required experience.

  • Challenges

Lateral hires may face challenges in terms of adapting to the organization’s culture and processes, so effective onboarding and integration programs are often essential for their success.

  • Compensation and Negotiation

Compensation for lateral hires may be influenced by their prior experience and market value, and negotiations can be more complex than for entry-level positions.

Lateral recruitment can be particularly beneficial when an organization is looking to address specific skills gaps, bring in leadership talent, or respond to rapid changes in the business environment. However, it’s important to strike a balance between hiring externally and promoting from within to maintain morale and opportunities for internal career growth.

Lateral recruitment is commonly used in various industries, including finance, technology, healthcare, and management consulting, where specific expertise and experience are highly valued, and the talent pool is competitive. It is often complemented by other forms of recruitment, such as internal promotions, graduate hiring, and executive search for top leadership positions.

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