People Management

What to Know About Internal Recruitment 

When most of us talk about hiring, we think of job postings, recruiters, and lengthy interviews. But that’s only half the picture. Internal recruiting can be faster and more cost-effective than external hiring. It can also help you boost morale and productivity.


  • Internal recruiting can save you time and money while boosting your company culture.
  • It’s a great way to reward high-performing employees looking for new opportunities and challenges.
  • Hiring internally has downsides, but a transparent internal recruiting policy can help overcome them.

What Is Internal Recruitment?

Internal recruitment is hiring people from within your organization to fill vacant positions. 

Typically, it includes promotions or the transfer of someone from one business unit to another. An employee moving from a part-time role to a full-time one also falls into this category.

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The Benefits of Internal Recruitment 

Promoting or hiring from within your organization reduces your cost per hire. It also streamlines the hiring process by fast-tracking internal candidates who already possess essential internal knowledge regarding processes, customers, and stakeholders. 

Internal morale can skyrocket when your team sees that hard work pays off in career advancement. Internal recruiting sends a clear message that there are genuine opportunities for growth within the company, which not only makes people happier at work but also boosts employee retention.

  • Save on job posting fees and recruitment agency costs by promoting from within.
  • Streamline hiring with internal candidates, skipping lengthy processes for faster onboarding.
  • Leverage existing employee knowledge for quicker adaptation to new roles.
  • Boost morale and retention by showcasing opportunities for career growth within the organization.

When to Recruit From Within

Internal hiring is much faster than going through the hullabaloo of job ads and resume reviews. It can lead to quicker productivity gains and lower training expenses, making it ideal when a position needs to be filled urgently or when the budget is tight.

It can also help you plan for the future.

Say your finance manager has been with the organization for over 20 years and actively talks about retiring. Who will be the best person to replace them? Consider an employee who reports directly to them. 

These people get your company culture and fully understand your products or services.

Internal sourcing is not just a strategy to plan for attrition but a powerful tool to cultivate your next generation of leaders. This approach fosters a more seamless transition when key people leave the organization, instilling optimism and hope in the future of your company’s leadership. 

How to Set Up an Internal Recruiting Process 

Like all great company initiatives, organization and transparency are key to a successful internal recruiting program. 

If you’re new to internal recruiting, start by considering these questions:

  • Will the company hire from within for all openings or specific ones?
  • How is the application and selection process different for internal versus external hires?
  • Where will positions be shared so that employees can see and learn more about them?
  • What training and documents are needed to support and promote the internal hiring process?

Once those questions have been answered, you can start building the infrastructure you need to hire from within. 

Document the processes you’ll follow. Establish who will be responsible for sharing, managing, and posting internal jobs. 

Make this a living document. You’re bound to find opportunities to improve the process every time. 

Internal Hiring Methods

There are several avenues you can explore to systemize your internal recruitment process. 

Internal Job Boards 

The easiest way to promote open positions is to set up a job board on the company intranet or another internal-only channel. This not only encourages career growth and mobility but also fosters a sense of loyalty and engagement among employees who see opportunities for advancement within the organization.

Internal Communications

Does your company have an internal newsletter? Do you use a tool like Slack to stay in touch? Consider all of the channels where employees communicate with each other, their managers, and other colleagues. Use these to amplify an open internal position. 

Training Programs

The benefits of these programs are twofold. Employees get new skills. You get to build and cultivate a pool of future leaders within your organization. 

For example, you could offer job shadowing or mentorship programs for employees to learn about other roles and departments within the company. Not only do they get on-the-job experience, it will also highlight areas where they need to grow before they can step into a new role.

You could also offer training programs to fill critical knowledge gaps within the organization. Let’s say your software development team desperately needs help but experienced external hires are too expensive. Finding current employees who are interested in development and training them can be a better investment than bringing in new engineers.

Talent Management Systems

Talent management systems let you organize all of your internal hiring processes and methodologies—as well as your employees’ skills and interests—in one place. 

This helps streamline internal recruiting. It also helps ensure each applicant is judged by the same standards.

Advantages of Internal Recruitment 

Retain and Nurture Top Talent

Undoubtedly, today’s employees are always looking for the next opportunity. 

An active internal recruiting process shows current employees that you care about their career development. It helps them see how they can advance within your organization rather than seeking new opportunities at another company—or worse, your competition.

Build a Leadership Pipeline

Despite any organization’s best efforts to woo employees, attrition happens. People retire, leave the workforce, and move on to other opportunities they can’t resist.

Internal recruitment helps with succession planning by empowering you to develop and nurture a pipeline of future leaders. This helps keep important industry and institutional knowledge in-house. 

It also helps ensure that your organization stays productive and innovative, even if key players and contributors leave. 

Strengthen Your Company Culture

You want to hold on tight when you find employees who share your company values. These are the people who help bring your mission and vision to life. 

Keeping them in-house helps improve your organization’s resiliency, productivity, and, ultimately, its success. 

Disadvantages of Internal Recruitment 

Additional Vacancies

The biggest problem with internal recruiting is that you’ll also have to find a replacement for the employee who was promoted to a new role. Suddenly, you have two jobs to fill.

Lack of Fresh Perspectives

It’s great to keep people who understand your organization, industry, and culture in-house. But that can mean you lose the benefits of new ideas and fresh perspectives. 

This can lead to stagnation. Sometimes, bringing in external hires can help challenge the status quo. 

Learn more about the right time to hire new employees.

Internal Tension

Unfortunately, you can’t promote everyone. The folks who weren’t moved to a new position may wonder why they were left behind. This can lead to internal jealousy, resentment, and a hostile work environment.

Having a transparent and consistent internal hiring process can help minimize these conflicts. 

Wize Words

Internal recruiting saves time and money while strengthening your company culture. This can result in increased team morale and productivity, and help you build a pipeline of strong candidates.

With a transparent internal recruiting policy in place, you can build your dream team—and help them grow.


  • Helen Anne Travis

    Helen Anne Travis is a seasoned journalist with an extensive portfolio that includes contributions to renowned media outlets such as CNN and USA Today. Her writing expertise extends beyond journalism, including projects with organizations like M.I.T.

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The article was reviewed by Marisa Ramirez

Helen Anne Travis

Helen Anne Travis is a seasoned journalist with an extensive portfolio that includes contributions to renowned media outlets such as CNN and USA Today. Her writing expertise extends beyond journalism, including projects with organizations like M.I.T.

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