Executive Talent Hunt: Deciding Between Internal and External Recruitment for Your Business

Last updated Aug 31, 2023
  • Types of internal recruitment include promotions, transfers, temporary-to-permanent positions, and employee referrals, all offering unique advantages for organizations regarding employee development, engagement, and cost-effectiveness.
  • Internal recruitment offers advantages such as cost savings, reduced training time, increased retention rates, improved employee morale, and a better cultural fit, but it may lead to unhealthy competition, limit fresh perspectives, and create temporary gaps in the workforce.
  • To effectively recruit internal candidates, establish clear processes, utilize an ATS, encourage employee participation, screen candidates rigorously, ensure fairness in the selection process, and provide constructive feedback to unsuccessful candidates.
  • External recruitment strategies include networking and referrals, recruitment agencies, direct sourcing, diversity and inclusion initiatives, and employer branding and online presence to attract and hire talent from outside the organization.
  • To recruit external candidates effectively, conduct market research, establish clear job specifications, engage passive candidates, develop a strong employer brand, leverage professional networks and executive search databases, use tailored direct approaches, collaborate with internal stakeholders, streamline the selection process, and maintain candidate relationships.

Finding the right executive for your business ensures its success and growth. The selection of an executive leader can profoundly impact the organization’s direction, performance, and culture. 

When filling executive positions, companies have two primary options: internal recruitment, which involves promoting or transferring existing employees, and external recruitment, which consists in searching for candidates outside the organization. 

Both approaches have merits and challenges, and choosing the most suitable method requires careful consideration.

The principles discussed in this guide apply to various industries and organizational contexts, whether you are a small startup, a growing mid-sized company, or a large multinational corporation. 

We understand that every business is unique, and the recruitment strategy that works best for one may not be suitable for another. 

Hence, the goal is to empower you with the necessary tools and information to make an informed decision that aligns with your specific needs and objectives.

The following sections will delve into internal and external recruitment nuances, compare their advantages and limitations, and provide practical tips to optimize your executive recruitment process. 

Remember, the right executive can catalyze growth, innovation, and organizational excellence. 

So let us embark on this journey of exploring internal versus external recruitment, ultimately guiding you in finding the ideal executive who will propel your business toward tremendous success.

What is Internal Recruitment?

Internal recruiting is filling job openings by selecting candidates from the current workforce. 

Companies use this strategy to hire employees with insider knowledge and expertise, foster loyalty, promote progress, and capitalize on internal familiarity.

According to freshworks, internal recruiting is favored due to several reasons. Hiring managers are already acquainted with the candidates, saving screening time. 

Moreover, internal recruitment typically incurs fewer expenses and is faster than external hiring. 

Additionally, it has been observed that internal transfers contribute significantly to employee motivation within a company.

Given the unique recruitment landscape experienced in a particular year, internal recruiting can effectively and efficiently fill positions.

Types of Internal Recruitment

There are different types of internal recruitment, which can range from:


The most common form of internal recruiting is through promotions, which are highly sought after by employees.

A promotion occurs when an employee progresses to a higher salary grade or takes on substantially greater responsibilities within the same grade.

Promotions signify a company’s commitment to employee development and acknowledge their dedication. 

By prioritizing internal hires, organizations demonstrate their provision of growth opportunities and fair, transparent promotion policies. 

This creates a positive work environment that fosters employee satisfaction, engagement, and empowerment.


A transfer refers to reassigning individuals from their current position to another similar job. 

A transfer does not modify salary, rank, responsibility, or prestige. Transfers foster positive relationships among employees, prevent monotony in their work, and enhance their familiarity with various tasks.

Temporary to Permanent

A temp-to-perm job is initially a temporary position that can transition into a permanent role. 

In this arrangement, an employee may be hired knowing that their temporary assignment could lead to a permanent job offer. 

Alternatively, the company may decide during the assignment that they would like the employee to continue and extend an offer for a permanent position.

Employee’s Referral

Employee referrals are a precious yet often overlooked form of internal recruiting that can be a hiring manager’s dream. 

They offer a cost-effective means of bringing qualified candidates directly to the attention of hiring managers. 

Implementing a well-designed system to incentivize and gamify the employee referral process can result in a consistent flow of candidates referred by employees. 

This approach enhances recruitment and encourages employee engagement and participation in the referral program.

Pros and Cons of Internal Recruitment

According to LinkedIn’s 2020 Global Talent Trends report, more than 70% of businesses prioritize “internal recruiting” as a strategic approach. 

This method offers several advantages, including expedited hiring processes and quicker time-to-productivity compared to external recruitment. 

The survey further highlights the significant benefits associated with internal recruitment, emphasizing its positive impact on organizations regarding efficiency and effectiveness.

To learn about the benefits and drawbacks of recruiting internally, here are its positive and negative aspects:


Saves Money

By leveraging existing employees, internal recruiting reduces training costs significantly. 

The advantage lies in the fact that there is no need to train new employees from scratch. 

Even if there are new systems or minor processes to be taught, the time and cost savings are substantial since the entire training and onboarding process can be bypassed. 

This efficient utilization of resources allows organizations to allocate their time and budget more effectively.

Reduces the Duration of Training and Expedite the Process of Onboarding

Internal recruiting reduces training time and expedites onboarding. Since internal candidates are already acquainted with the organization’s processes and systems, the investment required for their training is significantly reduced in time and money. 

This advantage allows for a streamlined onboarding experience, enabling internal recruits to adapt and contribute to their new roles quickly.

Increases Retention Rates

Internal recruiting boosts retention rates by offering opportunities for employee growth within the company. 

By demonstrating that there are avenues for career advancement within the organization, employees are encouraged to stay rather than seek external opportunities for progression. 

This fosters a sense of loyalty and commitment among employees, resulting in higher retention rates and a more stable workforce.

Boosts Employee Morale

Internal recruiting improves team motivation and morale as current team members witness the recognition and rewards bestowed upon their colleagues for their hard work within the company. 

This fosters a sense of inspiration and enthusiasm within the team as they observe the opportunities for growth and advancement based on their efforts. 

The positive atmosphere created by internal recruitment enhances team dynamics and contributes to a motivated and engaged workforce.

Ensures that Individuals Fit Well With the Culture

Internal recruiting ensures a strong culture fit as existing employees are already familiar with the company’s culture. 

This eliminates the risk of hiring individuals needing to align better with the organization’s values and work environment. 

Internal recruiting is an excellent approach as it selects candidates familiar with the company’s culture. 

This promotes seamless integration and helps to enhance team cohesion and overall organizational harmony.

Decreases Employee Turnover

Internal recruiting decreases employee turnover by strategically matching internal candidates with roles that align with their passions and unique skill sets. 

Unplanned turnover is typically seen as an adverse event within an organization, indicating potential issues. 

However, effectively utilizing internal talent can enhance employee satisfaction and engagement, increasing the likelihood of long-term commitment to the company. 

This targeted approach to internal recruitment mitigates turnover risks and promotes a stable and dedicated workforce.


May Promote Unhealthy Competition at Work

Improperly managed internal recruitment can lead to challenging situations, particularly when well-defined policies and procedures must be followed. 

It can create unhealthy competition and breed resentment among team members. 

To mitigate such risks, handling internal recruitment processes carefully is crucial, ensuring transparency, fairness, and clear communication. 

Organizations can navigate internal recruitment challenges by implementing practical guidelines, fostering a supportive culture, and maintaining a positive work environment.

Limits Fresh Perspectives

One of the drawbacks of internal recruitment is the potential need for fresh perspectives. 

By primarily focusing on internal candidates, there is a possibility of missing out on these valuable, outside viewpoints. 

To balance this, organizations can consider combining internal and external recruitment strategies to ensure a diverse and innovative workforce that benefits from both internal expertise and external perspectives.

May Create Gaps in the Current Workforce

Internal recruitment creates an additional open position within the organization when one of the existing employees moves up the ladder. 

This can lead to a temporary gap or vacancy in the current workforce, which needs to be addressed. 

While promoting internal talent benefits employee growth and motivation, organizations must plan and manage these transitions effectively to ensure minimal disruption and maintain productivity. 

Proper succession planning and talent development programs can mitigate the impact of creating open positions and ensure a smooth transition within the workforce.

How to Identify Potential Candidates Within the Organization for Internal Recruitment?

Identifying potential candidates within an organization for internal recruitment involves assessing existing employees’ skills, experience, and potential. 

Here are some steps to help you identify potential candidates effectively:

  1. Define the requirements: Start by clearly defining the qualifications, skills, and experience required for the position or opportunity within your organization. This will serve as a benchmark for evaluating potential candidates.
  1. Review performance records: Look into performance records, such as performance appraisals, employee evaluations, and supervisor feedback. Identify individuals who consistently demonstrate exceptional performance, meet or exceed expectations, and exhibit growth potential.
  1. Seek recommendations: Consult with managers, supervisors, and team leaders to gather their insights on potential candidates. They may have firsthand knowledge of employees who possess the necessary skills, show potential, or are interested in taking on new responsibilities.
  1. Assess skills and competencies: Conduct skills assessments or evaluations to identify employees with the desired skills and competencies required for the position. This can be done through interviews, assessments, or performance tests.
  1. Review career development plans: Examine the career development plans or aspirations of employees within the organization. Look for individuals who have expressed an interest in advancing their careers or have actively pursued additional training and development opportunities.
  1. Consider potential and willingness to learn: Look for employees willing to learn, adapt, and take on new challenges. Assess their ability to acquire new skills quickly and their potential to grow within the organization.
  1. Evaluate interpersonal skills: Consider employees’ interpersonal and communication skills. Effective communication, collaboration, and leadership abilities are essential for success in many roles. Look for individuals who can work well with others and exhibit strong teamwork skills.
  1. Review attendance and reliability: Consider employees’ attendance records and reliability. Consistency and dependability are crucial attributes for candidates being considered for internal positions. Employees who consistently demonstrate punctuality and reliability may be more likely to handle additional responsibilities effectively.
  1. Consider diversity and inclusion: Ensure your evaluation considers diversity and inclusion goals. Look for potential candidates from different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives to foster a diverse and inclusive workplace.
  1. Provide development opportunities: Offer development opportunities, such as training programs, mentorship, or job rotations, to employees who show potential. This helps them develop the necessary skills and demonstrates your organization’s commitment to internal growth and development.

By following these steps, you can effectively identify potential candidates within your organization for internal recruitment, enabling you to promote and leverage the talents and skills of your existing employees.

Strategies You Can Use to Recruit Internal Candidates

Here’s a step-by-step guide on implementing an internal recruiting strategy: 

  1. Set up your processes: Establish an internal job board, define the critical decision-makers involved, and create clear policies for managers and employees. Having these processes in place beforehand saves time and ensures consistency.
  1. Use an ATS (Applicant Tracking System): Adopt an ATS to manage the entire hiring process, including internal and external candidates. This tool will help streamline and organize recruitment efforts, mainly when dealing with a potentially large number of applicants.
  1. Encourage employee participation: Communicate to managers the importance of promoting internal job opportunities and encourage employees to regularly check the internal job board. This ensures a continuous pool of qualified internal candidates.
  1. Screen candidates rigorously: Apply a thorough screening process to internal candidates to match their skill sets and the requirements of the desired role. Evaluate whether the company would benefit more from transitioning into a new position.
  1. Ensure fairness: Avoid creating negativity in the workplace by involving multiple stakeholders in the interview and promotion process. This helps maintain a fair and transparent selection process, mitigating any perceptions of bias.
  1. Provide constructive feedback: Offer meaningful feedback to internal candidates not selected for a particular role—guide skills improvement or certifications to make them better suited for future opportunities. Suggest alternative roles that may align better with their capabilities to ease the disappointment.

These steps can be followed by organizations to implement an internal recruitment strategy effectively. This will help to get the most benefits while reducing challenges.

Related: The Future is Here: How Artificial Intelligence Transforms Executive Search

What is External Recruitment?

External recruitment involves a comprehensive and resource-intensive process for companies. 

It entails creating and posting job descriptions on multiple job boards, engaging with potential candidates, enhancing employer branding efforts, and more. 

These endeavors are crucial to attract a vast talent pool from outside the organization and ensure a successful external recruitment process.

Types of External Recruitment

External recruitment is often seen as a valuable solution for organizations seeking top talent, providing various options. 

It is generally the preferred approach for many organizations when searching for candidates. 

Recruiters can access numerous hiring strategies to identify and attract talent outside the organization effectively. 

These strategies include:

Networking and Referrals

Engaging in networking activities, attending industry events, and leveraging professional connections to receive referrals and recommendations for qualified candidates.

Recruitment Agencies

Partnering with recruitment agencies that specialize in sourcing and screening candidates for specific roles, providing access to a broader talent pool.

Direct Sourcing

Proactively searching for potential candidates through online platforms, professional networks, and industry forums and contacting them directly.

Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives

Actively promoting diversity and inclusion in recruitment efforts to attract candidates from diverse backgrounds and experiences.

Employer Branding and Online Presence

Developing a strong employer brand and maintaining an active online presence to attract potential candidates who resonate with the company’s values and culture.

Organizations can expand their search for suitable candidates and increase their chances of finding the right fit by using external recruitment strategies.

Related: Maximize your Hiring Potential for 2023 with CDA’s Salary Report

Pros and Cons of External Recruitment


Brings a Wide Selection of Candidates

Expanding your search beyond your organization gives you access to a significantly larger talent pool, increasing the number of candidates available for your position. 

This broader reach enhances your chances of finding highly qualified and successful applicants. 

With a larger candidate pool, you can be more selective and identify individuals with the ideal combination of education, experience, and skills necessary for the job. 

The broader range of candidates allows you to make a more informed decision and select the most suitable candidate for the role.

Offers Fresh Perspectives

Introducing external hires to your organization brings fresh perspectives. 

These individuals offer new viewpoints that can identify areas for improvement and provide valuable recommendations. 

As newcomers, they bring a different approach and outlook than existing employees, which can lead to positive changes within their department and the company. 

Their unique experiences and diverse backgrounds can contribute to innovation and drive progress in the organization. 

Companies can facilitate growth, problem-solving, and a culture of continuous improvement by welcoming fresh perspectives.

Fosters Diversity

External recruitment is crucial in enhancing an organization’s diversity. Organizations can bring in individuals with diverse backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives by seeking talent from outside the company. 

This infusion of diversity fosters innovation, introducing different ways of thinking and problem-solving. 

A diverse workforce promotes a more inclusive and empowering environment where individuals from various backgrounds can contribute their unique insights and perspectives. 

Embracing diversity through external recruitment enriches the organization’s talent pool, leading to more effective practices, increased creativity, and a stronger sense of belonging for all employees.

Helps Find a Suitable Candidate with Specific Skills and Expertise

Exploring external candidates expands your chances of finding a specialized candidate with the precise experience and training required for the job. 

Relying solely on internal candidates may limit your options, potentially resulting in increased training costs to bridge any skill gaps. 

By extending your search externally, you can specifically target applicants with the specialized training and experience necessary for the position. 

This strategic approach allows you to identify candidates who can immediately contribute their expertise, reducing the time and resources required for onboarding and training. 

Consequently, selecting a specialized candidate from the external talent pool can expedite the integration process and enhance the overall effectiveness of the role.

Boosts Referrals of Current Employees to Recommend Potential Candidates

Incorporating external recruitment strategies allows you to leverage employee referrals within your hiring process. 

By actively encouraging current employees to refer candidates, you can benefit from an additional layer of candidate screening. 

Employee referrals often result in high-quality candidates, as employees typically refer individuals they trust and believe would be a good fit for the company. 

This referral-based approach can save time by streamlining the initial screening process and focusing on candidates already recommended by trusted insiders. 

To further promote employee referrals, consider offering incentives to employees whose referred candidates are successfully hired. 

This encourages employees to participate in the recruitment process actively and increases the likelihood of attracting top-notch talent through their networks.

Helps in Maintaining Competitiveness

Embracing external recruitment helps organizations stay competitive by harnessing the ideas and strategies of new employees with diverse backgrounds and experiences. 

These individuals can introduce fresh perspectives from their previous roles and industries, offering valuable insights and innovative approaches to enhance the organization’s practices. 

By incorporating external hires, companies can tap into a wealth of knowledge and best practices from other companies, enabling them to stay current with industry trends and maintain a competitive edge. 

This infusion of new ideas and perspectives promotes continuous improvement, adaptability, and a forward-thinking culture within the organization. 

It allows companies to evolve and remain relevant in a rapidly changing business landscape, positioning them for long-term success.

Reduces Employee Tension

Organizations may hire external candidates to alleviate tensions among current employees competing for management or supervisory roles. 

Bringing in an outside candidate for such positions helps mitigate any internal conflicts or rivalries within the team. 

Hiring externally ensures a fair and impartial selection process, minimizing perceptions of favoritism or bias. 

This approach promotes a harmonious work environment and maintains positive relationships among existing employees. 

An external hire can also introduce a fresh perspective and neutralize pre-existing dynamics, fostering a collaborative and inclusive atmosphere. 

Organizations can effectively manage employee tensions and promote a cohesive team environment by prioritizing transparency and fairness.

Builds Authority

Bringing in a manager from outside the company can facilitate the establishment of their authority and leadership role more smoothly compared to an internal candidate. 

Current employees may find it challenging to perceive a peer with whom they have previously worked at the same level as an authoritative figure. 

By hiring an external manager, there is a clear distinction between their previous role and the new leadership position, making it easier for them to command respect and establish their authority from the start. 

This external perspective lends credibility and helps build trust among team members, as the new manager is seen as an impartial decision-maker, unbiased by prior relationships within the organization. 

To create a productive work environment and guide the team towards achieving organizational goals, the manager should establish their authority.


Increases Expenses

External recruitment is often more expensive than internal recruitment due to costs associated with recruiting services, job search site memberships, and candidate travel. 

The HR team spends more time on recruitment efforts, interviews, and paperwork. 

To reduce costs, organizations can automate recruitment tasks using resume scanning technology and employ screening techniques. 

They can also have candidates complete personality tests to assess cultural fit and involve current employees in the interview process for additional insights. 

These strategies help optimize recruitment processes, lower expenses, and identify candidates who align with the organization’s needs and values.

Provides Additional Training

External hires typically require more training than internal employees, which can result in additional costs and reduced productivity during the training period. 

To minimize the time and expense associated with new hire training, companies can streamline the process by implementing efficient employee onboarding strategies. 

This includes leveraging technology to deliver training materials and resources, maintaining regular check-ins to support and address concerns, and spreading general training over several weeks with shorter, focused sessions. 

By adopting these approaches, organizations can optimize the training process for external hires, improve their time-to-productivity, and mitigate associated costs.

Introduces a Transition Period for Every Staff Member

Introducing new employees to a company often involves a transition period for their colleagues. 

This adjustment phase, especially for new hires in leadership positions, may take a few weeks as employees familiarize themselves with company practices, build relationships with colleagues, and develop effective strategies. 

This transitional period can temporarily impact productivity. To foster unity and ease this transition, companies can organize team activities, lunches, and collaborative projects to encourage interaction and integration. 

Assigning a “buddy” to new hires can also facilitate introductions to other employees and provide a resource for answering questions. 

These initiatives promote a smoother onboarding experience, enhance teamwork, and help minimize any productivity dip during this period.

May Have an Impact on Employee Morale

External recruitment can impact employee morale, particularly when internal employees anticipate advancement opportunities within the company. 

Hiring an external candidate can be seen as a missed chance for internal progression, leading to employee concerns and dissatisfaction. 

To address these concerns, it is crucial to have open discussions about the reasons for external recruitment and provide transparency about the decision-making process. 

Reviewing employees’ career goals and outlining potential paths for advancement within the organization can help alleviate their concerns and reaffirm their prospects for growth and development. 

By engaging in these conversations, companies can mitigate the impact on employee morale and maintain a positive work environment.

How to Identify Potential Executive Candidates Outside the Organization?

Identifying potential executive candidates outside the organization requires a systematic approach and careful evaluation. 

Here are some steps to identify and assess potential executive candidates externally:

  1. Define the desired executive profile: Clearly articulate the skills, experience, qualifications, and competencies required for the executive role. Consider technical expertise and leadership qualities aligning with your organization’s goals and culture.
  1. Conduct market research: Explore the industry landscape to identify organizations that produce top talent in the desired field or function. Look for companies with a similar business model, strategic focus, or cultural values to your organization.
  1. Leverage professional networks: Tap into your professional networks, such as industry associations, conferences, and events, to gather recommendations and referrals. Connect with trusted colleagues, industry experts, and executive search firms who can provide insights and recommendations.
  1. Utilize online platforms: Utilize professional networking platforms like LinkedIn, where you can search for executives with relevant backgrounds, experience, and accomplishments. Review their profiles, work history, recommendations, and connections to assess suitability.
  1. Engage executive search firms: Executive search firms specialize in identifying and evaluating senior-level candidates. Engaging a reputable firm with expertise in your industry can save time and provide access to a broader pool of qualified candidates.
  1. Attend industry events: Participate in industry conferences, seminars, and events where you can meet professionals who may fit the executive profile you seek. Engage in conversations, exchange ideas, and assess their knowledge, expertise, and potential fit for your organization.
  1. Analyze industry publications and awards: Stay updated on industry publications, news articles, and awards recognizing top performers and rising stars. Identify individuals who have demonstrated exceptional achievements and leadership potential in relevant areas.
  1. Evaluate online presence: Research the online presence of potential candidates, including their social media profiles, personal websites, or professional blogs. This can provide insight into their thought leadership, industry involvement, and overall reputation.
  1. Utilize referrals and recommendations: Reach out to your professional network and key organizational stakeholders for recommendations of potential executive candidates. Referrals from trusted sources can help identify candidates who may not be actively seeking new opportunities.
  1. Conduct thorough assessments: Once you’ve identified potential executive candidates, conduct a thorough assessment process, including interviews, reference checks, psychometric assessments, and scenario-based exercises. This will help evaluate their suitability, leadership style, cultural fit, and alignment with your organization’s values and strategic objectives

To find outside executives to hire, you must offer them a strong reason to join, including good pay and a thorough hiring process. 

It’s important to handle everything professionally, with privacy, and by prioritizing getting to know potential candidates.

Related: Attracting the Right Executives with the Help of a Headhunter

Strategies You Can Use to Recruit External Candidates 

Here are some effective strategies to attract and recruit external candidates:

  1. Comprehensive market research: Conduct thorough market research to identify potential candidates with the skills and qualifications required for the executive role. Explore sources such as industry-specific networks, professional associations, online platforms, and competitor organizations.
  1. Establish clear job specifications: Work closely with the hiring company to develop a detailed job description and candidate profile. This will help you target the right individuals and ensure a focused recruitment process.
  1. Engage passive candidates: Executive-level candidates may not actively seek job opportunities. Proactively reach out to potential candidates who are not actively looking for a job but possess the desired qualifications and experience. This could involve leveraging your network, attending industry events, or utilizing online platforms.
  1. Develop a strong employer brand: Promote the hiring company’s employer brand to attract external candidates. Highlight the organization’s unique selling points, such as its culture, values, career development opportunities, and executive leadership team. Leverage digital channels, social media, and professional networks to create a compelling brand presence.
  1. Leverage professional networks: Build and maintain relationships with your network’s industry leaders, executives, and professionals. These connections can provide valuable referrals and recommendations, increasing the pool of potential candidates.
  1. Utilize executive search databases: Leverage executive search databases and platforms that provide access to a wide range of candidate profiles. These platforms often offer advanced search filters to help you find candidates with specific skills, experience, and qualifications.
  1. Tailored direct approach: Craft personalized and compelling messages when reaching out to potential candidates. Clearly articulate why their skills and experience make them a good fit for the role and how the opportunity aligns with their career goals. Show genuine interest in their professional achievements and aspirations.
  1. Collaborate with internal stakeholders: Work closely with the hiring company’s executives and key stakeholders to comprehensively understand their requirements. Engage them throughout recruitment to ensure alignment and a smooth candidate experience.
  1. Streamline the selection process: Executive candidates are often in high demand and have multiple opportunities. Ensure that the recruitment process is efficient and respects their time. Streamline interviews, assessments, and decision-making to avoid lengthy delays.
  1. Maintain candidate relationships: Nurture relationships with promising candidates even if they are not selected for the current role. Keep them engaged by providing updates on future opportunities or industry insights. This way, you can build a talent pipeline and strengthen your network for future searches.

To effectively recruit high-level candidates for executive positions, having a strong grasp of the industry and possessing exceptional networking skills is essential. 

Additionally, utilizing a strategic approach to recruitment can significantly improve your chances of success.

How to Decide Whether Internal or External Recruitment is the Best Option?

When deciding between internal and external recruitment, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. 

Each method has its advantages and drawbacks. Internal recruitment is cost-effective, utilizes existing employees’ knowledge and skills, and maintains organizational continuity. Internal candidates bring proven qualities and cultural alignment. 

On the other hand, external recruitment brings fresh perspectives, new ideas, and a larger pool of qualified candidates. External hires can help drive innovation and adaptability.

Internal recruitment is typically favored when the company performs well and wants to build upon existing strengths. It may also be necessary when the organization needs more resources to train new hires effectively. 

External recruitment is preferred when robust onboarding and training processes are in place and when the company seeks new skills, experience, and perspectives to expand or break away from traditional thinking.

A successful recruitment strategy involves a combination of internal and external hiring, depending on the role, responsibilities, and direction of the business. 

Understanding the position’s specific needs, analyzing the business environment, and considering long-term goals are essential in making the best recruitment decisions.

Related: Recruit or Promote: How to Choose When Hiring for an Executive Position

Final Thoughts

When it comes to recruitment, organizations need to assess their needs and goals to decide which approach is best suited for them. 

Internal recruitment may be the most cost-effective option when existing employees have the required skills and experience. 

On the other hand, external recruitment can bring new perspectives and ideas, allowing companies to stay competitive and remain relevant in the marketplace. 

Both internal and external recruitment has advantages and drawbacks, and organizations should leverage a combination of both for long-term success. 

By understanding their needs, assessing the situation, and considering long-term goals, companies can make informed decisions to ensure a successful hiring strategy.

Do you need assistance determining which recruitment strategy to use?

We at Curran Daly and Associates specialize in hiring executives for businesses in today’s evolving work landscape. Whether embracing hybrid work or optimizing the workforce, we assist in crafting effective hiring and retention propositions. 

We choose between internal and external recruitment, leveraging existing talent or broadening the talent pool for fresh perspectives. 

Focusing on aligning with business goals and culture, they identify high-potential individuals and provide tailored strategies for seamless transitions.

We have a track record of efficiently securing executive talent through cutting-edge assessment methodologies. 

Our streamlined processes and market insights expedite recruitment without compromising quality. 

Contact us today for executive search support and to drive your business to success.


Doyle, A. (2020). Temporary to Permanent Jobs. The Balance. https://www.thebalancemoney.com/temporary-to-permanent-jobs-2063933 

Hogarty, S. (2022). Internal vs. external recruitment: pros, cons, and methods. Ideas. https://www.wework.com/ideas/professional-development/management-leadership/internal-vs-external-recruitment-pros-cons-and-methods 

Indeed Editorial Team. (2023b). The Advantages and Disadvantages of External Recruitment. Indeed Career Guide. https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/career-development/advantages-external-recruitment 

Pros and Cons of Allowing Internal Job Transfers. (n.d.). Indeed. https://www.indeed.com/recruitment/c/info/pros-and-cons-of-allowing-internal-job-transfers 

By: Curran Daly + Associates


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