As a hiring manager, you are evaluated based on your ability to attract and land the top talent that exists in your industry. Regardless of what employment statistics tell us or what economic trends and factors we experience, the bottom line is that there is an ongoing and never-relenting challenge for hiring managers to make a conscious effort to evaluate and improve their recruiting platform and attraction strategy. This video will share with you some top techniques and best practices to ensure you have a comprehensive and robust strategy to win the war for talent for your organization.
First stop: your organization’s website. Take a look at your Join Us section. First, do you have one? If not, we advise you to create one. But take a look at that page on your firm’s site. Does it just list open positions with a quick paragraph about the history of your company, or does it tell a compelling story of your organization’s culture, your value proposition, and what others who have joined your firm have accomplished since joining?
Although listing vacant positions seems logical, consider the opportunity this page holds for talking less about what you need in a hire and more about what you offer to someone and their career. Consider sharing testimonials from recent hires who can attest to the significant differences now that they are with your firm. Share newsletters or quarterly updates with photos from events and cultural initiatives. Contact your city’s business journal and investigate any “best place to work” awards or accolades to which you could apply. Take photos of the interactive events you host as a company, things such as Bring Your Kids to Work Day, or group volunteer efforts, or intramural sports teams. Consider creating a video with clips from around the office, community and spotlighting superstars. This can be an effective way to show “why your firm” to any prospect considering applying to your organization.
Second, evaluate the postings you have on any job boards or the Internet. Is the posting a job description that includes specific requirements of the position, like the number of years of experience or the type of degree someone needs, or the listing of soft skills that are desired? If so, consider replacing that information with information that highlights the challenges or responsibilities and authority to be experienced by the individual who fills this role. Successful postings sell first and screen second. If someone is currently employed performing in this role with your competitor, what can you say to differentiate your opportunity from the one they are currently in? Even if a candidate is unqualified, you as a hiring manager should desire to be in the position to turn that candidate away, instead of missing the opportunity to evaluate that individual in the first place.
Review how much ad space is currently being used to explain the fundamental duties and responsibilities of the position and how much is used to attract and sell passive candidates to the organization. Another small tip in this area, apply for one of your postings, whether it’s through your own website or an external site, and see how smooth of a process it is. Be on the lookout for what information fields are cumbersome, what dropdown selections are limited, or what kind of email or communication is received after you push submit. You want to be the one who experiences those frustrations and fixes them before any candidate experiences the same.
Third, take a look at your internal referral program. With most internal referral programs, the success does not rest with the prize associated with the referral, but rather with the consistent reminder that the program exists and the path for growth is an incredible one. How frequently are awards distributed and how public is the announcement that hires were made due to a referral? Employees do not refer friends and colleagues because of a cash reward, but due to a deeply rooted belief in the opportunity that exists for those friends and colleagues once they have joined the firm.
Fourth, track the effectiveness of your current methods and sources for hires. Of the hires made in the past two years, what was the originating source of each of those hires? Include hires no longer with the organization, if possible. Now, once that data has been compiled, do not make a ruling based on number of hires alone. Just because more hires were made from recruiters does not mean that the internal referral program should be abandoned entirely, as an example. With each hiring method, take a look at what is working and what can be improved. Create a process to keep in touch with exceptional alumni from your firm, individuals who have left the organization whom you wished wouldn’t have and increase the chances of you working together if or when circumstances align.
Finally, we’ll share some best practices when it comes to partnering with recruiters. When was the last time a recruiter shared with you the specific story they’d be sharing throughout the market regarding your opportunity and organization? Not only is it important to control the message being delivered, it’s important to not miss out on the chance to generate some tremendous buzz as a result of canvassing the passive market. Make sure that you know how your name and story are being shared with passive, yet viable individuals in the industry. Unless, of course, the search is for a confidential replacement, or if you’ve requested otherwise.
This results in hundreds of individuals within your competition learning about your growth, your innovation, and advancements. Make sure the story being shared throughout your industry helps you maintain a proactive pipeline of prospective hires and ensures putting you in a position to land the best talent on an ongoing basis. Remember to also keep a strong pipeline of viable prospects for your toughest-to-fill positions or areas, so if a need does arise, you have an immediate candidate pool proactively identified. These are just a few successful strategies for winning the war for talent. For additional ideas or to talk further about a search effort on your behalf, we look forward to talking with you soon.