You’re probably sick of hearing about the candidate-driven market, and for good reason—it’s a constant reminder that you’re unable to fill empty seats. This is a new millennium, which means the strategies you were using in the past just don’t cut it today. As research from Worldwide ERC points out, “Be prepared to do things differently.”
Great Recession Strategies Still in Play
A recent iCIMS and Appcast webinar, “The Race for Talent in 2020: Fix your candidate journey and stop wasting spend,” drives this point further home. Leah Daniels, Appcast SVP of Strategy, says some of the things you’re doing are hurting your race for talent. She says this is a product of the strategies recruiters and employers were using during the Great Recession, and what worked then does not necessarily work now.
According to Daniels, in 2009, for every open job, there were six available candidates. But now, for every candidate available, there are only 1.2 open roles. Simply put, there aren’t enough people to fill these jobs. Daniels also says your applicant tracking system (ATS) may be partially to blame, as well.
During the Great Recession, employers were able to pick and choose the best talent because there were more candidates than there were available jobs. In today’s climate, if you’re still using the same ATS processes as you were 10 years ago, of course you’re going to have trouble weeding through the plethora of available candidates.
It’s time to get with the times and do things differently!
A Multipronged Approach to Recruiting Talent
ATSs aside, it’s time to adopt new strategies for attracting and retaining top talent. The Worldwide ERC report offers a multipronged approach to recruiting candidates based on its in-depth interviews with chief Human Resources officers (CHROs) and HR experts.
Based on these insights, Worldwide ERC finds that the kinds of benefits you offer can make a difference in recruiting the best talent, and they don’t have to cost a thing. So long as you’re providing flexibility and skills development opportunities, you’ll be able to attract and retain the talent you need in no time.
“It’s openness to flexible hours, openness to working remote certain days. You just have to be so much more flexible in order to attract great candidates,” explained one CHRO in the report. “I always tell people if you truly trust employees, and they’re really good workers, I don’t know why you hesitate.”
“Try to have long-term development plans for your top people or else,” a participant emphasized. “What I always tell my people is any time we have to go outside for a leader or a director, we’ve failed as a company. We weren’t able to develop that person.”
Worldwide ERC’s research also found that compensation is a driving force, as 47% of research respondents say they increase pay to be competitive in the job market. Some even go the extra step of providing a pay increase once a new hire has completed his or her onboarding.
Here are the areas you should focus on when building out your multipronged approach:
- Compensation—Start by researching other companies to see what they’re paying their employees. You can also research compensation ranges for particular roles on websites like Glassdoor. Once an employee is fully onboarded, consider giving him or her a slight pay increase, which can help retain the employee longer. Worldwide ERC suggests increasing salaries and the frequency of promotions for additional retention.
- Benefits—Besides the tried and true, like healthcare insurance, consider offering perks and benefits your competition doesn’t offer workers. “While pay remains important, there is an uptick in interest on vacation policies and 401k matching,” says Worldwide ERC.
- Mobility—In today’s technology-driven world, employees have the ability to work when they want and wherever they want. If you want to attract the mobile workforce, you must prove to them that you’re willing to accommodate the flexibility they desire.
- Communication—Simplify the hiring process to move from first contact to making an offer faster and continuing to engage the employee after an offer is accepted, suggests Worldwide ERC. As we know, constant and timely communications are the key to keeping candidates during the recruitment process. Worldwide ERC adds that this strategy also helps build relationships with talent early on in the process.
- Retention—What’s the best way to recruit talent? By not losing top performers in the first place, which is why retention should be top of mind when creating a recruiting program. In fact, most things that attract talent will ultimately retain talent, as well, which is why Worldwide ERC suggests short-term (90-day) retention bonuses, feedback, upskilling, and career development opportunities to make these workers want to come back every day.
Worldwide ERC also adds that “employers must attempt to create solutions that can satisfy the preferences of multiple generations,” which is never easy to accomplish. Fortunately, we’ve created a pretty solid overview of what each generation wants; be sure to consult it when determining how to recruit each generation of workers.
At the end of the day, your goal is to put butts into seats, and unless/until you optimize your recruiting strategies, you’ll be one of the many employers shouting, “I’m sick of hearing about the candidate-driven market!”