Your company has finally approved the position that has been so desperately needed on your team. Now it’s time to find the perfect candidate. But where do you start?

Duffy Group Inc. uses a little-known but highly effective process called Recruitment Research. Part research and part sales, Recruitment Research hunts for viable candidates not only based on skillset but also on their ability to fit into the company’s culture, too.

Recruitment Research employs a multi-pronged approach that begins by creating a sound sourcing strategy with in-depth research on the hiring company and the position at hand and ends by serving up the best three to five candidates for interviews.

In between, there are some important steps that should not be overlooked. One of these is name generation. This fundamental strategy enables Duffy executive recruiters to identify candidates whose background and experience align with the requirements of the job. Think of it as Prince Charming finding the princess who is the perfect fit for the glass slipper.

If that sounds like a tall order, it is. It’s why some hiring managers buy potential candidate names and others turn to social media and Internet job boards as go-to sources for unearthing talent. In the digital age, the latter isn’t a bad thing; tools like LinkedIn deliver a database with thousands of resumes and can serve as an effective point of connection. But limiting the process to the Internet has limitations, too. Among them is the fact that most other recruiters and hiring managers are fishing in the same pond.

At Duffy Group, we combine Internet search tools with other creative ways to unearth talent who may not know an open position exists. We do this through cold calling, which enables our recruiters to engage with “passive” candidates who are employed and may not be looking to make a job change.

There is no template for cold calling; instead, it is dependent on the company and the open position. This is where the research part of the Recruitment Research process takes effect. In some cases, our recruiters work through trade associations to find potential candidates, while in other instances, they may call a targeted company to inquire about a sales manager who oversees a particular service line or geographical area of the company. Still another way may be to query a technical manager about a specialized product and then use the knowledge gleaned on a call to pique the interest of a would-be candidate. Recruitment Research is more of an art than a science. We have the skills to locate candidates you may not be able to find. We turn up candidates in new, unusual and non-traditional places. Recruitment Researchers provide important insulation and confidentiality as well as decrease the number of calls companies receive from unqualified or unsolicited inquires.

Aside from uncovering viable talent with the credentials on paper to do the job, cold-calling can serve as a first step in the vetting process, helping recruiters solidify the credentials and get a sense of the individual’s personality.

Once a connection is made, our recruiters can then follow through with other communication – email, a longer phone call away from the office or even a text message – and then begin a comprehensive recruitment vetting process.

At a time when the labor market is tight and finding top talent is a challenge, name generation has become more critical than ever. Determining the best way to do this can mean the difference between serving up the best candidates for the job – or not.