Everything You Need to Know About Full Life Cycle Recruiting

Full Life Cycle Recruiting is a term used for a complete recruiting process. Full Life Cycle Recruiting encompasses 6 main end to end recruitment stages: preparing, sourcing, screening, selecting, hiring and onboarding.


Full Life Cycle Recruiting synonyms

Full Life Cycle Recruiting is also known as:

➡️ Check out our free guide: Top 15 Recruitment Trends in 2020! 

So what is full-cycle recruiting exactly? 

“Full Life Cycle Recruiting” is a term used for a complete recruiting process, from start to finish. This is why it is also sometimes called "End to end recruitment process".
Full Life Cycle Recruiting encompasses different recruitment stages. Recruitment life cycle starts when a need for a new employee rises and ends up with a new employee onboarding. Each of these stages will be explained in detail later in this text so you can fully understand what is full cycle recruiting. 

Who is responsible for a Full Cycle Recruiting?

In order to fully understand what is full cycle recruiting before we dive deep into all the details, it is crucial that you understand who holds the responsibility for the full cycle recruiting and end to end recruitment process.   

Responsibility for a full cycle recruiting process usually shifts with the company size:

In startups and smaller companies, there is usually one person responsible for the whole recruitment process. That person is called a “Full Life Cycle Recruiter”. Full Life Cycle Recruiter is a solo player who performs a one (wo)man recruitment show. In other words, a Full Life Cycle Recruiter completes every stage of the recruitment process. 

In medium-sized companies, there is usually an HR department with an HR team. Each person on the team usually specializes in performing certain stages of the recruiting process.

Large companies usually have the whole HR departments and teams specialized for a specific stage of a recruitment life cycle.

Companies of all size can also outsource a whole recruiting process or its specific stages.

Full Life Cycle Recruiting process stages

We already mentioned that a full cycle recruiting process incorporates a few different stages. So what are the main stages of a recruitment life cycle? 

Full Life Cycle Recruiting process encompasses 6 main recruiting stages: preparing, sourcing, screening, selecting, hiring and finally onboarding.


Each of the 6 main full cycle recruiting stages encompasses different activities.

Full cycle recruiting stage #1: Preparing

“Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.”
To prepare for a winning full life cycle recruiting it is crucial to define your candidate persona and write a great job description. 

Defining your candidate persona is the very first stage of a successful recruiting strategy. A candidate persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal candidate. This persona is formed by defining the characteristics, skills, and traits that make up your perfect hire. Creating personas help guide and make your end to end recruitment process easier. 

Get our guide for defining a candidate persona

Next step in this stage of a full cycle recruiting is writing a job description that attracts candidates. Make sure to write a clear and accurate explanation of the job and responsibilities, not a laundry list of your requirements. Include information about the salary range, perks and benefits and your company values. To help you save time, we have created free job descriptions templates and samples.

Full cycle recruiting stage #2: Sourcing

Professional recruiters use different methods for sourcing candidates. In today's world of high demand for talented workers, it is often not enough to just post job openings on job boards or career sites. This is because more than 70% of candidates are passive. That’s why modern recruiters turn to new inventive methods for finding candidates.

First is web sourcing. With web sourcing, a single web search scans millions of online profiles to retrieve passive and active candidates’ details including email addresses, resumes and more.

Second is social recruiting, using social media channels (such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc.) in recruiting.

Third is in-house recruiting or finding great candidates internally, among your existing employees.

Forth are employee referral programs, structured programs that companies use to find talented people by asking their existing employees to recommend candidates from their existing networks.

Get our Guide for finding high-quality job candidates

Full cycle recruiting stage #3: Screening

The goal of this full cycle recruiting stage is to narrow down your applicants to the very best candidates.

Screening stage begins with reviewing employment applications, which usually consist of resumes, motivational letter and/or portfolios. The goal of reviewing these documents is to find applicants whose qualifications, skills and experiences best match your vacant job description.

These candidates then go into the next round of screening - a telephone informational interview. Candidates who make this cut are shortlisted and invited to a face to face interview.

Full cycle recruiting stage #4: Selecting

Selecting the very best candidate is the most critical part of the full cycle recruiting process. No matter how good your potential candidates may seem on the paper, seeing them in person is your ultimate opportunity to determine if they have the perfect combination of knowledge, skills and experience you are looking for. Your requirements will vary depending on your industry and your vacant job position.

You can use a variety of candidate selection methods that best fit your hiring needs, like different types of auditions and testing (psychological tests, programming tasks, custom written assignments etc.).

Most common candidate selection method though is conducting interviews. To help you choose the right candidate, not just the best interviewer, we prepared this Complete guide to candidate interview questions.

Before making the final decision on the best candidate, this stage of full cycle recruiting can on some occasions also include a background check of employees and/or their references.

Full cycle recruiting stage #5: Hiring

Hiring stage of the recruitment life cycle consists of two main activities: job offer and negotiations.

Once you found your perfect candidate, it’s time to notify him/her. According to the LinkedIn survey, 77% of candidates prefer receiving good news over the phone. Right after making that phone call you should send an official job offer letter.

A well-structured job offer clarifies all hiring terms. It includes precise information on compensation and benefits, working hours and contract length, as well as the employment start date. To improve the chance of your job offer being accepted, it’s advisable to personalize it.

Sometimes a candidate won’t accept your job offering immediately, so further negotiations will be needed in order to reach a mutually satisfying employment contract. This is usually the most delicate recruiting stage of the whole end to end recruitment process. This is why it needs to be handled with special care and attention.  

Full cycle recruiting stage #6: Onboarding

Despite popular belief, a recruitment life cycle doesn’t end when you hire a candidate. An onboarding is the final and perhaps the most crucial stage of the full cycle recruiting. It can make or break your whole recruiting process! What is the point of finding and hiring those perfect candidates if you can’t make them stay and fit in your company culture?

Onboarding is not a boring formal paperwork. Onboarding is all about making the new employees feel welcomed and helping them ease into their new working place by teaming up with their new coworkers.

Great onboarding starts with introductions, then moves on to orientation and ends up with training. Combining all these activities is the right formula for creating a winning onboarding which will guarantee a great start at your company for your new employee, and a final success of your recruitment life cycle.

Full Life Cycle Recruiting tools

All these full cycle recruiting stages seem complicated and very time-consuming. They are, if you are not using the right tools. There are many different tools that offer solutions for various recruitment life cycle stages and challenges. In addition, there are some recruiting and hiring tools that now offer all solutions in one tool. 💪

Our TalentLyft is such an all-in-one recruiting platform that can help you organize and streamline your recruiting process. With our TalentLyft tool you can manage, monitor, track and measure your whole, end to end recruitment process from one place.

Want to start practicing full life cycle recruiting?
Get in touch with our product specialists to learn more about our tool and help you personalize your full life cycle recruiting strategy!
 Get your full life cycle recruiting strategy! 
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