5 key knowledge and skills that differentiate top recruiters


There will be an 85.2 million of talent shortage by 2030, according to Korn Ferry. Meanwhile, a survey by LinkedIn finds out that 69% employers could not find suitable and qualified talent for visible job vacancies. Foreseeably, recruiting suitable talent will get harder year by year. For recruiters, how to stand out from the crowd to gain competitiveness in the job market is becoming a hot potato. Struggling how to acquire talent more effectively? This article delves into 5 key knowledge and skills that differentiate top recruiters, which can definitely give you some idea!

Social media marketing skills

Here are some statistics of social media users and social media recruitments, which may be surprising.

  • A total of 4.95 billion of people in the globe were social media in October 2023 (Statista)
  • 92% employers hire high quality candidates by using social media (Sprout social)
  • 46% employers put their recruitment investment focuses on social media (Jobvite)
  • Job posts posted on social media receive 8 times more engagements and 25 times more shares than that on official companies’ channels (Tribal impact)
  • 47% of recruiters stated that social media immensely helps in branding (LinkedIn)

From the above statistics, we can obviously tell that social media is a key platform and means of recruitment. The emergence of social media platforms like LinkedIn and Instagram is making recruitment more convenient and efficient. With the immense development of technology, the number of job seekers on social media platforms is escalating. It is paramount for recruiters to utilize them for job advertising and branding. To cite an instance, a company can build up its image by using reels and stories on Instagram to introduce its culture. These can apparently attract younger job applicants. Thus, social media marketing skills (SEO, SEM, copywriting, etc.) are unprecedentedly important for increasing exposure to hiring information and selecting candidates.

Negotiating skills

Barkley J. Stuart (Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits executive vice president and director of government affairs) suggested a 70-30 rule in negotiation. He stated that people should listen for 70% of the time and use the remaining 30% to express their ideas. This can help control conversations more effectively. 

During interview conversations, recruiters should listen to the interviewees, thus setting customized strategies to negotiate with them. For example, salary negotiation is one of the most prevalent negotiations during recruitment processes. There was a 75% increase in salary negotiation by candidates during recruitments (Jobvite), which showed that the negotiation is getting more frequent. Recruiters should politely mention the boundaries and bottom line of the salary after listening to candidates’ requirements attentively. It is important to find a medium that both sides can accept. If things does not work well, mentioning and emphasizing the company’s unique characteristics (excellent welfare, inclusive culture, adherence to ESG, etc.) can also improve candidates’ impression to the company.

Multilingual skills

As a prosperous and international financial centre, Hong Kong attracts a massive number of foreign or mainland talents to work here. To avoid misunderstandings during verbal and written communication with candidates, it is better for recruiters to be proficient in English, Cantonese, and Mandarin. False receipt of information during the recruitment process can be minimized, and thus increasing its efficiency.

Data analytical skills

The use of big data is prevailing among HR firms and recruitment agencies. Recruitment decision-making is no longer solely based on feelings but on data-driven recruitment statistics. Sourcing and screening are the processes that rely most on big data. To analyze the data and foster efficiency and speed in recruitment, it is better for recruiters to be proficient in statistical programming (R, SQL, Python, etc.) and Microsoft Excel (VLOOKUP, VBA, etc.). A skyrocketing number of talented candidates can be sourced and selected when statistical recruitment trends and patterns are acquired from big data. It is conceivable that having data analytical skills enormously helps accomplish more favourable recruitment outcomes.

Knowledge on HR law, compliance and ethics

In order to keep recruitment work legal and ethical, recruiters should at least have basic knowledge of HR law, compliance, and ethics. From a legal perspective, recruiters should be familiar with the basic HR laws included in the Hong Kong Employment Law. Higher familiarity with laws can regulate recruitment work. Thus, companies can prevent themselves from engaging in lawsuits or business crimes. From an ethical perspective, recruiters should advocate fairness, objections, equality, and transparency in recruitment and related HR practices. Moreover, they should not engage in any discriminatory acts against different groups of candidates (gender, age, race, sexual orientation, and disability). Furthermore, recruiters should maintain the confidentiality of recruitment information to protect the privacy of the company and the candidates. These acts can help boost a company’s reputation and build up positive images to attract more potential employees.


After knowing what are the knowledge and skills that differentiate top recruiters,  it is time for you, as a recruiter, to upgrade yourself to deal with issues in recruitment more confidently. We believe that after following these knowledge and skills that differentiate top recruiters, your competitiveness in terms of talent acquisition will be boosted.

How can FastLane HR help?

Established in 2013, FastLane HR has provided professional HR advisory services to more than 1500 clients from 80+ fields. We understand that adequacy and quality of manpower are vital to any business. We have rich experience, strong networks, and advanced HR and payroll platforms. Our executive search and recruitment team is capable of fulfilling your requirements for recruiting talents. Click on our website, https://fastlanehr.hk/, for more information. Should you have any inquiries, please do not hesitate to contact us via WhatsApp, WeChat, or phone calls.