Hiring someone out of town or out of the country presents its own unique set of challenges. You need to find a way to personally connect with a candidate without spending an arm and a leg. You need to be sure that, once hired, the candidate will actually pull up stakes and move to your company. And you need to do all of this as quickly and efficiently as possible, because you still have an important open position to fill.

With all of these roadblocks, it’s not hard to see why many employers and HR professionals skip over far-flung candidates. But with the skills gap becoming an ever-worsening problem, now might not be the best time to ignore international candidates.

For every vacant position, employers now have to review between 52 and 160 applicants. Yet this flood of candidates doesn’t mean the right person for the job is easy to find. In fact, a recent survey by Bullhorn found the biggest challenge faced by recruiters and staffing professionals was a lack of skilled candidates. The same survey also found 47 percent of recruiters saw their companies expanding into new territories this year.

If you can’t find the talent you need in your company’s backyard, perhaps it’s time to expand the search. International hiring might not be ideal, but it can help you skip over shallow candidate pools and find the person with the right skills for the position. Thankfully, new technology is making it easier than ever before to get outside of your geographical comfort zone and connect with the best candidates.

Here are just three of the tech solutions easing international hiring for recruiters and employers who want to jump the skills gap in a single bound:

1) Social Media:

Right now, social media is a hot trend in the recruiting community. It seems like everywhere you turn someone is talking about using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or even Pinterest to recruit top-tier talent. This is probably why a whopping 94 percent of recruiters are currently using social media in their hiring process.

One of the benefits of social media, especially when it comes to hiring international or far-away candidates, is that you don’t need to be located within earshot of talent in order to connect. Social networks make it easy to find and connect with great people located all over the globe. Identifying a talent community where your ideal candidates gather means possibly finding a wide variety of talent from all over the world.

You don’t need to shake hands at a networking event anymore in order to find someone who might be perfect for your company. Candidates on social media are sharing thought leadership, advice, and top-notch thinking in discussions, Twitter chats, and blog posts. This means social media is a great way to not only keep tabs on what’s happening within your industry, but also to build up a talent pipeline for your organization with the best talent, regardless of where they call home.

READ MORE: Social Media in Recruitment: How Far is Too Far?

2) Mobile Recruiting:

Recruitment is going mobile – and tech-obsessed candidates are happy to apply for your company’s positions directly from their smartphones and tablets. In fact, many candidates would actually prefer to send their resume through your mobile recruitment platform; a recent survey found 70 percent of job seekers are already using their mobile devices to hunt for jobs.

Thanks to the portable nature of mobile devices, these candidates can now apply to your positions from anywhere. This means optimizing your job applications and career site for mobile browsing can nab you talent from all over the world.

Allowing a candidate to easily apply for your positions from a mobile device is a smart way to find great people no matter where they call home. Mobile optimization is also just a smart call in general, especially considering 61 percent of job seekers would immediately leave a site not optimized for mobile viewing.

READ MORE: How Mobile Recruitment Is Changing The Hiring Process [5 Ways]

3) Video Interviewing:

Once you’ve isolated great candidates and they’ve applied for your open positions, it’s time to connect. One of the biggest problems with evaluating far-flung and international talent is how hard this personal connection can be. Your candidate might be a plane ride away, and flying in talent for the interview is time-consuming and expensive.

Using a video interview, you can still maintain the personal connection you need without anyone needing to buckle up for takeoff. In the preliminary interview stage, employers can use a one-way video interview to get a personal feel without wasting time. In a one-way video interview, candidates answer an employer’s written questions on video. This way you don’t spend 30 minutes on a phone screen with someone all wrong for the job.

When it comes to screening international talent, however, the most useful tool is the live video interview. Thanks to the real-time nature of live video interviews, you can connect with a candidate just like you would if they were sitting on the other side of your desk — yet no planes are necessary and your company doesn’t have to foot the bill for airfare. Best of all, since live video interviews are recorded, you can easily share your best and brightest candidates with your whole hiring team.

With the skills gap growing wider, you can’t afford to fall in when trying to find the top talent you need. Expanding your candidate pool into international waters is one smart way to find the candidates with the skills you need. Thankfully, new technology is here to help recruiters find the right people no matter where they call home.

READ MORE: How To Maximize Video Interviews

What do you think? What technology do you use to connect with international candidates? Share in the comments!

Author: Josh Tolan is the CEO of Spark Hire, a video powered hiring network that connects job seekers and employers through video resumes and online interviews. Connect with him and Spark Hire on Twitter.

Image: Shutterstock

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