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Vadim Pavlov

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Recruitment: Three ways to attract talent in a candidate-driven market

In a candidate-driven market, how can employers stand out among the competition and secure the best talent?

The pandemic has not only dramatically changed the climate of how people work, but also how companies recruit new talent. And the chances are it’ll never be the same again. 

In this article, we provide three ways to ensure your company evolves in the changed environment and develops a hiring process that secures winning talent in a candidate-driven market. 

In this new climate, employees are seeking out new roles that enable them greater flexibility, autonomy and purpose at work.

1. Look for self-disciplined employees and trust them

If your company used to track down to the last minute the time your employees spent in the office, you probably had difficulties adjusting to remote work during the pandemic.

On the other hand, companies that allowed their employees to work remotely to some degree pre-pandemic (where feasible and without using any monitoring software to track their workers’ outputs) likely had fewer issues with the big changes brought on by Covid-19. 

Why? Because those latter companies trusted their employees to do their jobs without being watched. Of course, this trust is continuously earned along the way, but it’s founded upon a strong recruitment process. These businesses have hiring processes in place that ensure they recruit self-disciplined, self-motivated and highly conscientious employees in the first place. Workers who are responsible for time they spend at work, for the quality of their work and for their decisions.

In this new world of work, employees do not want to feel they are being closely monitored for the hours they put in. If you want to secure top talent, get rid of your time tracking software/hardware and give your people greater autonomy and flexibility. 

Otherwise employees will concentrate on time tracking more than on the quality of work they do and the decisions they make. You will also likely lose staff to other businesses who start from a place of trust rather than a place of suspicion.

And when hiring new employees, make sure they can demonstrate self-discipline in some way. For example, have they had previous experience of freelance or remote work? What is their opinion of remote work? Are they working on any personal projects? 

2. Take flexible working hours to the next level

When choosing an attractive employer, salary is not the only deciding factor that employees consider.

In recent years, there’s been numerous surveys showing that a significant proportion of employees value flexible working hours more than a high salary. They truly value their free time and don’t wish to trade it for a bonus or an increase in salary.

The pandemic has led to an increasing number of employers offering more flexibility with when their people work, but if you want to really stand out, perhaps consider cutting back on hours. Of course, you don’t want to cut your working hours significantly, but you could trial run allowing your employees to work an hour less a day in summer months, for example. 

Summer is the time when employees typically don’t want to stay late in the office, and productivity is lower. They’ve worked really hard throughout the year and they’re likely to have more social events and be planning for their upcoming holiday. So why not recognise your employees’ hard graft and give them a bit more downtime to enjoy the summer?

You will likely lose out on very little, if any, outputs, and your employees will be more rested and satisfied, leading to increased productivity throughout the rest of the year. 

And of course your vacancies will look much more attractive when you highlight your reduced summer working hours, giving you a better chance of attracting high quality applicants.

3. Make sure the process of applying for a job is flawless

The first impression your future employees get about your company often comes from your website and its careers page. Similar to when a candidate first visits your place of work to attend an interview, when visiting your careers page you want the potential applicant to see your organisation’s success, while at the same time making them feel relaxed and welcomed.

Striking the right balance to create this impression online can be difficult. Here are few things you can do:

  • Make sure your company’s career site looks great. Again this is like the design of your office. Make it stylish, but simple

  • Describe any benefits you have at your company, in particular anything that supports employee wellbeing and flexible working

  • When writing your job listings avoid business jargon and a corporate voice, and instead use a more human voice that offers simplicity and clarity.  Not only will this make your company stand out, it will also demonstrate to applicants that you have a friendly and relaxed working environment

  • Create a privacy notice so your applicants know how you use their personal data and are assured that your company doesn’t violate the rules

  • Don’t make too many fields mandatory when applicants apply for a job

Building an attractive careers site from scratch can be time-consuming, especially for HR professionals in small and medium-sized companies. Consider using an applicant tracking system that already includes a careers page and customise it according to your website’s style. 

Evolve your employee value proposition

The past 15+ months have changed everything – how we hire, how we work, how we live. In this new climate, employees are seeking out new roles that enable them greater flexibility, autonomy and purpose at work.

If your business can evolve its employee value proposition to meet these demands, and communicate your offering effectively in the hiring process, you have a much better chance of securing and retaining the best people for your organisation.

Is your careers page in need of an update?

Goodmind is a tool that allows you to deploy a careers page in a matter of minutes and start hiring right away. The interface is simple and modern, and it already has a Privacy Notice and Cookie consent, so you don’t need to spend time on it.

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