The current job market is saturated with highly qualified individuals, and the most qualified job seekers are looking for much more than just a paycheck in their search for employment. In order to attract the best candidates, you should have certain measures in place in your recruiting and hiring processes. What do the top talents in your industry look for? How can you attract them? Here’s a look.
The Employer of Choice
You can start by approaching talent acquisition and recruitment from the perspective of branding. If you position your company as the “employer of choice” to potential employees, you will be able to choose from the best of the best. To do so, you’ll want to describe what differentiates your company from others. For example, sell yourself by accurately reflecting your reputation in the marketplace, your practices and the benefits of being with your company. Sell the most attractive aspects of your company and/or operation.
Some of the best ways to differentiate your company in the eyes of job seekers include perks and features of your corporate culture. Whether you offer sign-on bonuses or have a high level of community engagement, these things can be attractive to job applicants. Any community programs, such as volunteering or philanthropic practices, are beneficial and should be clearly identified.
Other benefits that don’t take too high of a financial toll include those of employee engagement. Offering perks such as flex time, the opportunity to telecommute, and convenience services in the workplace are all things that will be attractive to job seekers. Additionally, succession planning and career development advising will go a long way in retaining the top talent that you have. Also consider coaching or mentoring, giving challenging assignments, providing opportunities for lateral career moves, and offering access to trade and professional associations.
Hiring as a Key Business Practice
Now that you’ve clearly outlined why you’re one of the best companies to work for, you should get a lot of applicants. To make sure that you’re bringing in the top talent, as opposed to just any talent, treat hiring as one of your key business practices. At its core, hiring should be valid and reliable, utilizing effective job development and analysis.
Start by outlining your current process. Do you have an effective planning process in place? Do you develop a strategy? Do you conduct discovery and research? Do you have a written recruitment plan? Connecting your opportunities with the job seekers who are most suited is key, and this will get you going in the right direction. Next, audit your recruiting process. There are talent profiles to identify and different ways to reach potential employees in recruiting (email, phone, professional networking).
Lastly, your interview and selection process should get an exhaustive look. In interviewing, your highly qualified candidates will value transparency and may ask you questions about your financial stability and business plans. This is also another opportunity for you to put your “employer of choice” branding strategy in play.
Other ways to attract top talent include a well-designed and regularly maintained careers website and social media strategies (think LinkedIn) — the utilization of all forms of media through these channels add to your brand. With a clear reputation as the top company to work for and a reliable hiring practice, you should be able to effectively find and hire your winning team!
Erica L. Fener, Ph.D., is Vice President, Business Development Strategy and Analysis at Progressus Therapy, a leading provider of school-based therapy jobs and early intervention careers.