Is your organization facing issues when it comes to attracting talent?
Perhaps you have a job opening that's been sitting vacant for weeks, or maybe you're looking to build a great support team but have no idea where to begin. The reality is that finding top talent is challenging these days, regardless of the specific industry you're in.
Fortunately, there are some best practices you can follow to attract the best talent in your market and fill those openings with quality candidates.
- Understand that the market is competitive, and ensure that it’s reflected in your compensation and benefits packages.
- Take advantage of resources that are available to improve your recruiting processes.
- Start recruiting at industry events, through local schools/colleges, and on social media.
- Ask for feedback on your application/screening processes and take that feedback seriously, making changes/improvements where necessary.
- Consider starting an employee referral program to recruit better talent.
1. Define Your Company's Core Values, Culture, and Brand Identity
Start by knowing where you stand as a brand and as an organization. This might seem pretty obvious and straightforward, but you might be surprised at how many companies out there lack a mission statement or an overall brand identity.
Today's workforce wants to feel as though their company's core values and culture align with their own—so if your company doesn't have an established identity, it can be difficult to build a talent pipeline.
If you don't have one already, consider adding a value or mission statement to your company website and to all active job postings.
However, make sure that this is more than just a statement and that your entire organization is on the same page regarding what your business stands for, how it represents itself, and what type of work environment it supports.
These days, a strong company culture is more important to prospective talent than ever before.
With this in mind, many organizations struggling to recruit new talent must go back to the proverbial drawing board and address longstanding issues with company culture and values before they can successfully recruit for a new position.
2. Get Serious About Compensation and Benefits
One of the employers' biggest mistakes when recruiting talent is failing to focus on fair compensation and benefits. Not only has the cost of living increased in the past couple of years, but many workers realized during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic that a lot of their work could be done outside of the physical office.
As a result, employees are choosier than ever about the type of compensation and benefits they'll accept and the kind of scheduling and work environment in which they will work.
As a result, flexibility, competitive compensation, and benefits are more important than ever in the recruitment process. Employers looking to recruit the top talent in the industry should ensure that their compensation and benefits packages reflect that.
This means exploring current median salaries for relevant positions and researching the packages being offered to new talent by the competition.
Some organizations may even need to offer more flexibility with scheduling to bring in the best talent for the job. Rather than requiring employees to physically be at the office eight hours per day, five days per week, allowing employees to work from home a few days per week or making other scheduling accommodations may be necessary.
This can make working at your company more enticing to a generation of talent that values their free time and sense of work/life balance more than ever.
What’s more, for larger businesses that are expanding into new countries, home-working and remote working can be essential in getting a foothold in a new territory and establishing a foreign subsidiary.
3. Network With Talent at Industry Events
If you're not already attending popular industry events, now is the time to prioritise this. Not only does attending industry trade shows and conferences give you a great opportunity to network with potential new clients and learn about the latest innovations—but these events can also be excellent sources of top talent.
Consider setting up a booth, for example, at the biggest industry trade show this year. From there, you can staff a member of your human resources team to network with potential talent as they pass by your booth.
This can be a great way to meet talent in person and perhaps even conduct an interview on the spot. You can also draw more people to your display by offering branded promotional items like t-shirts, hoodies, and mugs or something as simple as stickers, which are popular to give away at these events.
At the very least, you can use your attendance at an industry event to gather business cards and reach out to potential talent with opportunities after the event has concluded.
Whatever approach you decide to take, the reality is that industry trade shows, conferences, and similar events are among the best ways to meet new talent face-to-face. Meanwhile, your presence at these events will help spread your brand's awareness and keep you up-to-date on the latest happenings within your industry. It's a win-win!
4. Actively Recruit Through Social Media
If you're not having much luck with job boards and third-party recruiting sites, then it may be time to turn to social media. While you may not think of social media as a top source of job recruitment, the reality is that more businesses are using social media to find new talent than ever before.
You'll need to begin there if your business doesn't already have an established social media presence. Having active business accounts on popular social media platforms (such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn) is a great way to establish authority while building brand awareness.
Once you have a decent following, you can reach a large audience by sharing active job postings on your respective social media pages instead of on job boards alone. In fact, did you know that nearly 40 million people search for jobs on LinkedIn alone each week?
Meanwhile, social media platforms make it easy for users to "share" content, so your potential reach is even greater as they share your job posting with friends and family members. This can lead to more applications from top talent and a greater pool of qualified candidates with which to work.
5. Get Help From a Recruitment Professional
This may be the most sensible place to start if your organization doesn't already have dedicated recruitment managers or hiring managers. Specifically, hiring managers will have the experience and resources needed to review and improve upon your current hiring process.
Oftentimes, these professionals also have established networking relationships with top talent that they can put to work to your company's advantage.
If it's not in your HR budget to onboard a recruitment manager, there are more cost-effective options to consider. You might, for example, work with a professional hiring agency that can handle much of the recruitment and screening process on your behalf.
Of course, you work alongside these agencies throughout every step of the process and remain as involved as you'd like to be, ensuring that the talent you end up with is right for your job opening.
Still, working with a professional recruiter or recruitment platform is often one of the most effective ways to fill job openings with quality candidates who will be in it for the long haul.
Consider hiring HR professionals with industry-specific knowledge. For a software company, it's beneficial to have HR staff familiar with the Request for Proposal process and able to manage RFP software templates.
6. Ask For Feedback on Your Screening Process
When was the last time you reviewed your company's screening and hiring process for job seekers? If it's been a while, or if you've never reviewed these processes, then it's probably time for some improvements.
If your company is struggling to fill job openings, one of the best things you can do is to bring in a human resources professional or another industry expert to oversee your hiring process and offer feedback/suggestions for improvement.
You might be surprised at the things that could be turning some of the best talents in the industry away at various stages of the process—and making just a few changes could make all the difference.
It can also be useful to ask for direct feedback from current employees who have gone through your hiring process in the past. What would they have changed about the application, interview, or hiring process?
You can get a lot of valuable feedback and suggestions when you simply ask for them. If you're worried about employees not wanting to provide honest feedback, you could even send out an anonymous survey to collect this kind of information.
7. Create an Employee Referral Program
Just as current employees can be a great source of ideas for improving your current recruitment process, they can also be an excellent source for potential new talent.
By creating an employee referral program, you can incentivise your current employees to refer friends, family members, or other industry connections to apply for openings within your position. This improves your ability to find new talent while cutting down on the amount of active recruiting your company needs to do.
Likewise, the quality of the talent referred by a current employee is often higher than the talent you would find through other recruitment channels. In fact, 88% of employers consider employee referrals the best source of qualified talent.
Not sure where to start with an employee referral program? The concept is quite simple. It begins when an employee refers somebody they know to apply for a job within your organization. If the applicant is hired, the existing employee receives some sort of incentive. This could be a cash bonus, an additional day off, or some other benefit.
In some cases, the new employee who was hired may also receive an incentive—but this is usually deferred until the employee has stayed with the company for a specific period of time.
No matter how you decide to set up your employee referral program, this can be a great way to build your talent pipeline while showing appreciation to your current staff.
8. Make It Easier for Prospective Candidates to Apply
Feedback on your recruitment process from existing employees is important, but it's also important to invite feedback from those who are currently going through your screening process. This way, you can make changes to the process that may make it easier and more inviting for other candidates to submit an application.
You can do this by sending out candidate feedback forms to each new applicant; these forms should ask candidates about their experiences with the application process, the interview, and other screening stages (where applicable).
From there, you can take steps that make it easier for top talent to apply for job openings. This may include, for example, the ability to upload a resume directly rather than requiring job seekers to type out details of their resume directly into online forms. These seemingly small changes can add up to make a huge difference.
9. Establish Relationships With Schools and Universities
If you're hiring for entry-level positions, check with local colleges and universities to see if you can attend on-site career fairs or find another way to connect with recent/upcoming graduates.
Universities often hold hiring events, such as job fairs, where businesses can attend and network with up-and-coming graduates in the field. In some cases, you may even be able to offer on-the-spot applications and/or interviews. Don't sleep on this opportunity, as some of the best talents in your field may still be finishing up their degrees.
10. Take Advantage of Automation Technology
Lastly, explore automation technology that can help you streamline your hiring processes and draw in a higher calibre of candidates. Automated platforms often have access to large pools of talent, including those who may not even actively be looking for work.
Likewise, applicant tracking systems (ATS) can free up your valuable time by helping sort through applications and resumes, automating your interview scheduling, and the like.
Overall, automated recruitment services can be a cost-effective way to find the best talent in the least amount of time, which is vital to your bottom line when you have open positions to fill.
Start Attracting Your Industry's Best Talent Today
It's no secret that today's job market is tough for employers. More than ever, workers are demanding the competitive pay/benefits they deserve, and top talent is more particular than ever about the organizations they'll work for.
With all this in mind, employers are in a position where they need to improve upon outdated recruiting processes if they want to hire the best people for the job. Fortunately, with these tips in mind, your organization can modernize its hiring processes and find creative ways to bring in the best talent in the industry.