Many businesses have identified that they need to hire people with additional skills to help them respond to changes in their market, increase the speed at which they can transform, and ultimately succeed in the new landscape. But with talent being scarce at the moment due to travel restrictions and a general reluctance to change jobs, how do you go about attracting those much-needed new employees?
There is no doubt that this year has been challenging for businesses and professionals alike. High rates of unemployment, widespread hiring freezes and cost-cutting on an enormous scale have all been seen so far in 2020. With such uncertainty and economic strain, employers have been deconstructing and re-evaluating their hiring strategies, changing their attitudes towards how to attract talent.
There have been a number of reports about how, despite a pause in the war for talent over recent months, there will be huge competition for skilled professionals once again in the near future; yet another chapter in the ongoing war for talent. The majority of past crises, local or global, have been followed by a surge in hiring activity - so it would be beneficial to do the groundwork now for that resurgence (whenever it may come) and hone your talent attraction strategies in preparation.
How to attract talent in the current market…
Innovation, creativity and collaboration have been seen across most industries as companies made the most of tough conditions. These three key areas should be maintained in order to help you attract new talent.
It is your responsibility to identify the right people who will help you navigate the new landscape.
If you believe that hiring talent is the way your business will adapt and respond to market demands, there are a few things you should consider and a few new strategies you could adopt to ensure you are attracting the best...
What is important to talent in the current climate?
Recent years have seen the focus of most job seekers shift away from the highest possible salary when it comes to making the decision of accepting an offer. Nowadays, there are plenty of non-financial ways that employers can boost talent attraction - and this will continue to be hugely important in a tough economic environment.
Some of the key things job seekers are looking for from prospective employers include:
Job security and organisational stability - With such uncertainty around many things at the moment, if you can offer an element of job security and prove the stability of your organisation, you will improve your chances of being able to attract talent. A feeling of security also means those team members will be performing better, benefiting your business as a whole.
Guidance and support - The COVID-19 pandemic has heightened the importance of the wellbeing support employers offer their teams. Some of your employees will undoubtedly be feeling an element of anxiety and stress - it’s important that you give them guidance and support to ease their minds.
Prospective employees who see that you pay close attention to the wellness (mental, physical and financial) of your teams will look favourably on your company.
Career progression opportunities - The prospect of being able to progress is hugely important to many professionals and can often be fundamental in their decision of whether to accept a job offer or not. Could you integrate training schemes around both technical and soft skills? This will be attractive to those who are more conscious about their long-term career development.
You cannot underestimate the power of training, upskilling and reskilling - the inability to learn and grow is one of the primary reasons talent leave their employer and a huge turn-off for job seekers. Not only are training and upskilling programs powerful attraction and retention tools, but they will also benefit your company by helping to fill knowledge gaps.
Recognition for their talents and doing meaningful work - A large section of professionals are no longer happy being a small cog in a large corporate machine, but prefer to be doing more meaningful work and receiving recognition for the unique value they bring to their organisation. Feeling valued is an important contributor towards employee engagement and retention.
More flexibility and freedom - Flexibility is often regarded as just being around working patterns, but in fact employees want flexibility in other aspects of their employment as well. Could you offer more flexible, personalised benefits rather than just a company-wide benefits package - casting a wider net in this respect will widen the pool of talent you are able to attract.
Culture and relationships are of utmost importance
Every company has a reputation. Be it your employer branding or the external view of your business, this company culture is increasingly important. Your corporate culture can make an enormous amount of difference when you are attracting talent, and it’s important that your recruitment process promotes (and reflects) your excellent culture. To attract the best talent, you have to be regarded as somewhere that people want to work.
Watch our short video below with some simple ways you can improve the corporate culture of your business.
A large part of a positive corporate culture should revolve around establishing a good interpersonal relationship with your candidates. Not only will this increase the chances of each interviewee accepting your offer, but it is also beneficial for line managers to be sharpening their soft skills on a regular basis. It will also give interviewees a true depiction of what it is like working for you and the type of working relationships they can expect to encounter.
Use technological tools to attract talent
One positive that has come from the global pandemic and national lockdowns implemented in many countries is how well employees and organisations have adapted to using technology. Whilst this increased usage of technology has been forced by circumstances beyond employers’ control, it has undoubtedly accelerated their journey towards a more digital and virtual set-up.
Before the crisis, many companies were warming to the idea of digitally savvy employees who could work from anywhere in the world - it has now become a necessity for employers to be able to engage appropriately and effectively with virtual employees or interviewees.
Remote (or digital) hiring has become commonplace, with companies making use of video interviewing tools and various methods which enable remote onboarding. Whilst restrictions on face-to-face meetings meant digital hiring became a necessity, it is inevitable that digital hiring will continue as both employer and job seeker recognise that the traditional methods are no longer the only way to hire.
Maximising technology will give you access to a wider, more virtual pool of talent.
It has been a topic of discussion for several years now and Artificial Intelligence will continue to be a trend for the foreseeable future as businesses will need to reduce costs in a tough economic environment. Some employers are already utilising AI systems in their recruitment processes when screening candidates and moving interviewees through their application processes. It’s not only within recruitment processes that Artificial Intelligence can help employers - some organisations are using AI tools to monitor their employees, allowing them to strategically address individual performance issues.
Talent will help you accomplish your strategies
In the post-COVID-19 environment, companies will have to shift towards a more human approach, whilst making use of technology to optimise that. The ability to identify and hire workers who can help you accomplish your strategies and stay competitive will be crucial to success - knowing how to attract talent efficiently and effectively will be what sets apart the great from the good!