The Tynecastle club have already held talks with out-of-contract Livingston winger Alan Forrest and are interested in Beerschot striker Lawrence Shankland. Other players are also on their radar as Neilson and sporting director Joe Savage aim to increase their playing staff.
European and domestic matches next season will dictate the need for a bigger first-team pool at Riccarton and a recruitment drive is already underway.
“It’s still pretty early in the market, there isn’t a lot of movement but we have a couple of players we are interested in. We will see where we go with them over the next couple of weeks,” Neilson told the Evening News.
“We are hoping to get a few in early and then just take our time after that. If we can strengthen right away, it will give us a solid grounding. After that, if we do delve into the loan market again, it will probably be later in the window.
“Getting a few in first will help and we can go forward from there. We don’t want wholesale changes. A number of the younger players will come in and stake a claim in pre-season. If they show that they can be ready for the level we need then they will join the squad.
“Younger players need an opportunity. A few of them have done really well this season and there are others who maybe need a bit more time on loan.
“I don’t want to fill up the squad with players from outwith. We will bring a few in, go on a pre-season tour and play friendlies and then it’s up to them to stake a claim.”