If, like many organizations, you’re struggling to hire right now, you’re probably receiving copious advice from a million sources about what you should or shouldn’t be doing to maximize recruitment efforts. There’s no “one-size-fits-all” solution, unfortunately, but that doesn’t mean all hope is lost.
In most cases, it requires going back to the basics and asking the sometimes-hard questions we often avoid. If you feel like you’ve tried everything and still need help getting your recruitment efforts back on track, here are some strategies to consider.
For job-seekers, there are few red flags greater than a lack of communication from a prospective employer. The internet is laden with HR horror stories of employees who apply for a job, never hear anything, accept a job elsewhere, and suddenly hear back from the first company months—sometimes even a year—later.
No matter how many applicants you receive, establish a plan to communicate effectively with each one in a timely manner. Good communication could also look like assigning a team member to manage social media messages while others handle Indeed, LinkedIn, or email inquiries. No matter how you seek out prospective employees, take no longer than a week or two to respond to an initial application. For applicants actively in the pipeline, they ideally shouldn’t have more than a few days between communications.
Be Honest With Prospects & Yourself
Here’s the gist: If you’re reaching out to job seekers who don’t align with the work ethic or values of your currently-successful employees, you’re likely wasting your time. If employees don’t feel set up for success in their role, they’re significantly less likely to stick around.
Presenting your company in the most honest light is key to successful recruitment. If what prospective employees see about your company is true to who you are, the ones who still apply are more likely to stick around. The same is true for other job details, like wage ranges or using clear job descriptions. Don’t bait-and-switch them by portraying your company in one light, but showing different colors once you hire them.
Take an honest look at your company’s positive aspects and shortcomings. You might even consider having an anonymous survey for your employees to provide their insights. If you know who’s successful at your organization and can figure out why they’re successful, you can pursue more people like them, strengthening your team.
Prioritize High-impact Benefits
Once you know who your people are, it’s time to figure out what they want. It may seem straight-forward, but that isn’t always the case!
If you’re in an industry with a younger workforce, they may be more interested in guaranteed parental leave. Many people are interested in employer-match retirement funds. The ability to work a hybrid schedule or be fully-remote with a home office stipend could appeal to many individuals. Those looking to advance in their field—or even grow into a slightly different field—may prioritize professional development opportunities.
Figure out what your ideal employees would prioritize, and determine if you can feasibly and sustainably offer these benefits to your employees. By implementing strategic measures to help you grow into the type of company the right job seekers gravitate toward, you’re more likely to attract the right talent.
Know What You’re Hiring For
Think about where you want to see your organization in a year. Three years. Five years. Ten. How many employees will you have? What kind of work will you do? How will that look different than what you’re doing now? And, most importantly, what skillsets could new employees bring that will move you in the desired direction?
Even if someone has left your organization and you feel the need to fill their exact role, it’s possible there may be a better strategic fit in a slightly different skill set. Hire with intention and know what you’re looking for before kicking off the hiring process. It could save your team significant frustration and stress if everyone is on the same page.
Start With The Basics
Bringing a new member to your team is an important and strategic decision for any organization of any size. With the right mindset in place and clear expectations, you’ll set yourself up for success well before you officially begin hiring a new team member. While these tips may seem simple, together they can help your company establish a solid foundation to build your recruitment efforts on.