Internal Recruitment: A Complete Guide

Internal Recruitment: A Complete Guide

What is recruitment?

Recruitment is the process of shortlisting, screening, hiring, and eventually onboarding qualified job candidates. The recruiting process can be relatively straightforward, but advances in technology, a tight labour market, and a workforce pool that might span five generations can make the first step which is finding potential candidates, particularly challenging.​

Related: Top Recruitment Methods to Apply to your Business

What is Internal Recruitment?


Internal recruitment is sourcing from a company's current workforce for open roles within the same organization. It can also be defined as identifying and attracting current employees for open jobs.

Internal recruiting is filling vacancies within a business from its existing workforce. When a firm seeks to hire from its present workforce, it sources talent from other teams, departments, and job functions within the business. This process is known as internal recruitment. Teams can proactively fill skills gaps thanks to this method.

Related: Talent Acquisition: Internal or RPO

What are the advantages of internal recruiting?

Internal recruitment reduces employee turnover because employees are encouraged to seek additional career opportunities within the company rather than leaving. Internal hiring increases the retention of their most valuable employees.


You don't need background checks, as you've already done them. As you'll already know, you won't need to assess whether they're a good fit for the business. Your interview with the candidate can focus entirely on their suitability for the new role. The on-boarding process will be shorter if you choose to hire them.


You won't have to rely on external resources like recruitment agencies. You won't have to pay for expensive job ads or utilize job boards. It is often cheaper to promote an existing employee than hire a new staff member.

Rewards staff and improves morale

Career progression is very important to staff. When employees are shown that progression opportunities are available, it will help motivate and improve the morale of existing staff. It also gives individuals the opportunity to develop new skills. Rewarding staff in this way shows you value their contribution and want to keep them.

Increases Employee engagement

Allowing current employees to advance in their careers may show that a company values their time, effort and skills. Providing these kinds of opportunities may increase morale, build a culture of trust and encourage employees to stay within a company rather than pursuing external offers. It strengthens employee engagement because promoting from within sends a message that you highly value your employees and want to invest in them. Giving employees more opportunities to advance their careers, or even letting them move to higher-level positions that may interest them, is good for morale.

Related: Employee Engagement Ideas you can use in your Organisation

Internal Recruitment: Disadvantages

Internal hiring has several advantages, particularly in identifying the best cultural match and avoiding immediate costs like hardware, software, and on boarding and training. It may, however, also result in difficulties. Here are a few instances of difficulties with internal hiring:

  • Creating an inflexible culture: Hiring internal staff may promote a more standard or traditional culture. Employees who have been a culture fit in the organization may be too comfortable with current practices or become stuck in routines because their methods or systems worked in the past. This may be more problematic in leadership positions. Hiring externally may allow new practices and schools of thought to enter the organization.
    Doing most of your hiring from inside your business may result in a stagnant culture. This is because employees can get too comfortable with the 'way things are done' and struggle to spot inefficiencies and experiment with new ways of working. An inflexible culture will be more problematic in leadership positions where employees must advocate for change and improvements instead of relying on established, inefficient practices.
  • Creating a skills gap in the team: Promoting or hiring from within may leave a gap in a team or department. Unless they eliminate the candidate's old position, the company must hire an external candidate or promote from within to fill that job. If another promotion occurs, this leaves another gap. Doing this can disrupt business operations until a new hire fills the second position. Companies may not save any money if they have to hire for another position. An internal candidate might need further training, development, or mentoring to acquire the same level of competency as an external candidate, who may already possess all the necessary technical skills and expertise to fill a position.
  • Conflict inside the corporation could arise. There is a high chance that the internal recruitment procedure can be biased and cause clashes within the organization.
  • They are potentially lacking in diversity. The fact that outsider candidates bring fresh perspectives and new ideas to bear on dated business issues and procedures is one of the main advantages of recruiting them. Sometimes, this infusion of new energy is what propels a company ahead. However, a business could fail to understand the big picture by marketing from within.

Internal Recruitment Complete Guide

Related: Five ways to reduce bias in your recruiting

Internal recruitment examples


Promoting an existing employee to the next level of their position inside their team is the most popular internal recruiting strategy. This upward mobility results from an employee's exceptional work performance, possession of the necessary abilities, and ability to show growth by accepting new tasks that align with their career objectives.

Two lead recruiters on the team, for instance, who meet the qualifications for the position of recruiting manager, should be approached to see if they are interested. Generally speaking, before actively shopping for external candidates for an open post, recruiters and hiring managers should collaborate to determine whether there are qualified people already working within the organization. This promotes recruiting effectiveness while offering prospects for professional advancement inside the business.

Internal transfers

Finding employees from different departments who are looking for a position that fits with their career aspirations is another internal recruitment strategy. Some workers' career advancement might not always entail a promotion within their current team. Some qualified workers may be able to acquire the necessary new skills on their own or outside of the workplace to fulfil the job's criteria. For an engineering position, recruiters might contact a customer service representative who has been taking coding classes if they meet the job requirements.


Businesses are always relocating, evolving, and attempting to fit into the world we all live in. There may be internal rearrangement as a result of these developments. People who had been in a certain role are now being requested to move into something better suited to the new organizational structure.

Related: Internal Recruitment Examples

Internal Recruitment process

A hiring manager or HR professional can implement the following seven steps to develop a successful internal hiring procedure:

Create a guideline for the internal hiring process

Making an internal recruitment policy is the first step in a successful internal hiring procedure. This policy includes all parties who might be involved in internal recruiting and defines the internal recruitment procedure.

Create a method for posting jobs

The hiring team may create an internal system for uploading resumes to advertised open opportunities. Based on the resources available and the organization's size, job posting methods vary from business to business. A helpful resource that offers a conduit for inquiries and the most recent information is message boards that advertise internal opportunities.

Distribute a specific job description

Create a thorough, personalized job description to help with internal hiring. Job descriptions for internal candidates may include information about important items the internal candidate needs to be aware of.

Related: How to Prepare Job Descriptions That Work

Encourage staff to submit applications

Employees can be motivated by managers and supervisors to apply for positions that are open inside the organization.

Carefully Screening Applicants

Even when hiring internally, it's crucial to screen all applicants thoroughly. If they are carefully assessed, it will become clear if they would be the ideal candidate for the new post. The hiring manager can compare the evaluations of all applicants to see which ones stand out as potential candidates for the position.

Conduct impartial interviews

You can schedule interviews for the selected internal applicants after the screening. The interview process may entail participation from senior leadership, managers, and the human resources division.

Provide constructive criticism

It is essential to provide rejected candidates with positive and helpful comments throughout the screening and interview process. By proposing skills to learn. Giving advice can help individuals advance in their careers.

Related: How to react after not getting a promotion


Internal recruitment involves selecting in-house employees for promotion or filling up a new position which does not involve traditional and popular recruitment techniques such as advertising on job platforms or using agencies to source suitable candidates for a particular vacancy. The process of internal recruitment targets to fill gaps using the company's current talent. Internal recruitment to fill vacant posts encourage loyalty and a sense of progress for employees.

Theollah Suela
This article was written by Theollah a Consultant at Industrial Psychology Consultants (Pvt) Ltd

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