Bruce Groves |

The idea of user personas surfaced in the 1980s where they were first used to help define the needs of computer software applications.


With the advent of the web, marketers and user experience experts adopted persona development as a way to understand the needs of groups of customers, users and visitors.
And they are a perfect way to focus your recruitment marketing campaigns and content marketing strategy.
Business woman writing

Why Create Talent Personas?

Chances are you recruit for many varied roles. Whilst it may not be possible to create a persona for each individual role, you can probably group similar roles whether by function or experience level for example.

A persona is simply a fictional character who represents a segment of the candidates you are trying to attract.

By researching their goals you can start to paint a picture of them that, in turn, you can use to help define your content plan and communication strategy...in fact everything you’re going to need to attract them to your company.

How To Start Creating Talent Personas


Remember that although Personas are represented as a single character they are actually a composite of many different people. The aim is to create an archetype that will help you focus on a single person but meet the needs of many, many more.

So, you need to think about sources of information about these people.

Here’s a few sources that you should be able to access quickly and easily:

  1. Interviews with candidates
  2. Interviews with employees
  3. Exit interviews
  4. Recruitment team meetings
  5. LinkedIn
  6. Twitter
  7. Networking and Corporate Events


Once you have your data you need to collect it into a persona. Here’s what we think you should include:

Name and Photo: Use a realistic name and photo. Don’t use names of colleagues.

Quote: Capture the essence of this candidate in one or two points that could come out of the persona’s own mouth-so to speak.

Demographic: Age, Gender, Marital Status, Location, Education Level, Professional Accreditations or Membership.

Career: What are their main career motivations? What are their needs and desires? What are their salary expectations?

Attitudes: What are their main attitudes towards their ideal employer? Think about work environment, flexibility and benefits. Also, what frustrates them? What will motivate them to apply for a job?

Behaviours: What are their behaviours? Tell the story of their job search. Where did it start? What prompted them to apply? What device are they using? Your analytics data can come in handy here for creating a candidate journey.

The Talent Persona Worksheet


We’ve developed a handy Talent Persona Discussion Worksheet for you to download and help you focus on the key areas of research for each of your personas.

Persona development can seem quite daunting, but really it shouldn’t be too hard.
To help you organise your thoughts, research and discussions just click on the worksheet below to download it as a PDF for printing.

Talent Persona

*Adapted by Eploy for recruitment persona development from an original concept created by Creative Companion (https://creativecompanion.wordpress.com/2011/05/05/the-persona-core-poster/)

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