Competition for skilled workers is tougher than ever, whether you’re a small business or large enterprise.
The five strategies below will help you gain an advantage in the fight for talent so you can hire better people.
1. Make Your Application Process Simple and Engaging
The best job seekers have a lot of options and a lot of companies fighting for their attention. If your website is asking them to fill out two pages of personal info just to submit a resume, they’re going to go somewhere else. Make sure you’re offering a simple, easy way for them to apply, and remember this is their first impression of how you conduct business.
Also, use your website to showcase what it’s like to work for you through videos, employee testimonials, or highlights of community involvement or team building events. Keep it simple and genuine but make yourself stand out.
2. Take Advantage of the Slow Months
Late winter and early fall are considered the best times to look for jobs in most industries, because companies ramp up their hiring and fewer managers are on vacation. So while you’ll see a lot of active job seekers during these months, you’ll also face heavy competition. When things slow down in the summer months or holiday season, remember that your competition is probably slowing down too.
So you’ll have an opportunity to quickly grab the best talent without much resistance if you can find a way to stay active in your recruiting and hiring. To start, think critically about who is really necessary to make hiring decisions for each position. If every candidate right now is meeting with four managers, could you make a decision with just two? If so, it’ll be a lot easier to hire someone and work around vacation schedules.
3. Take Great Care of Your Current Team
Job seekers love to ask the interviewers and employees they meet for opinions about the company. They’re pretty good at judging the responses too. So you want to have employees that are excited about the organization and will enthusiastically talk about why coming to work for you is a no-brainer. Having high employee satisfaction will also help with referrals.
When a current employee has a friend who is ready for a job change, they’ll often find out before that person hits the open market. This means you’ll get the first shot at hiring them. That’s how many of the most talented people change jobs. This will improve your team morale too. According to a Gallup study, employees who report having a best friend at work are 43 percent more likely to feel praised and recognized, and 37 percent more likely to say someone in the organization is encouraging their development.
4. Plan for the Long Term
If you meet somebody great but they’re not the right fit for what you need, keep in touch. Tell them that you genuinely enjoyed interviewing them and that you want to keep them posted if things change. Or if you really are blown away by somebody you met, create a role to fit their skills if you can. Think outside the box and structure your process in a way that gives you an advantage over your competitors. Allow yourself to be agile if hiring is a priority for your business right now.
5. Hire a Good Recruiter
The recruiters you choose are representing your company, whether it’s an internal recruiter or an agency. If they’re calling candidates and being pushy or telling lies, it reflects poorly on you. Be careful who you work with and find people that see the value in building relationships, not just filling jobs.
Also look for people who can get creative and solve problems. You need someone who will rearrange the interview schedule to get a great candidate into the office in December before your competition comes back in January. If you commit to making the adjustments above, you will be in a better position to attract top talent now and in the future.
Originally published at www.business.com