Hiring? Follow these Musts for Attracting Killer Talent

Hiring? Follow these Musts for Attracting Killer Talent

Trying to attract and hire the right talent for your openings? The way candidates apply to positions and pick their employer is changing. Why? Actually, there’s a whole myriad of reasons.

For starters, the workforce is evolving faster than ever before. Baby boomers are hitting retirement age and within the next year, Millennials will account for half of the American workforce. And according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, that number will jump to 75% by 2030.  When it comes to work, they have a completely different outlook than Baby Boomers and Gen X’ers.

And the truth is you aren’t going to reel them into applying with ping pong tables and office happy hours.  They’re looking for companies that offer a great culture where their contributions are valued. And, they want an employer who makes it possible to have a career along with work-life balance.

Generational changes aren’t the only factors in shift. Technology and social networks are making it easy for applicants to apply for dozens of jobs in minutes. The economy is booming and unemployment is still down—meaning job seekers’ standards are up.

Luckily there are steps you can take to attract and hire the right talent for your business.

Here are five musts to follow when you’re hiring:

1. Make it easy to apply.

OK, this might sound obvious. But, if your application process is too complicated or involved then you’re going to lose qualified candidates on their way to clicking that apply button. If you’re using an older, slower application system that’s error-prone or requires candidates entering their complete job history, they might jump ship and move onto the next job description.

More organizations are posting Easy Apply positions on LinkedIn that candidates can apply to in five seconds or less in just a click (or two). Other employers have simple forms on their company sites that ask job searchers for their basic information and a fast resume upload. Bottom line, whatever position you’re hiring for, you need to make applying quick and simple. Today’s job seekers just aren’t willing to invest as much time in applying at a company they may not ever hear from.

2. Keep your company mission and values front and center.

Job seekers aren’t looking for companies to work at anymore – they’re looking for the right culture. And with half of professionals being Millennials, more than ever, there’s a focus on working at a company where their contributions are valued and they’re able to make an impact. Having a clear mission statement and set of core values on your company page can go a long way in communicating what’s important to your organization and whether that aligns with your applicants and their values. Recognizing your employees and their contributions can make a huge difference too.

The best LinkedIn career pages and career pages on corporate sites ooze culture and give employees an idea of what a day looks like at your company. Include photos from team-building events and team members in action at company and industry events so they can easily picture themselves doing the same thing. Job candidates are interested in companies that are seriously investing their team members as professionals. Your website, LinkedIn career page and job description should all convey that.

3. Offer compensation and benefits they can’t refuse.

Job candidates from every background and generation are focused on benefits and compensation when they’re looking for a long term position. They’re looking at the total package: vacation time, salary, bonus structure, healthcare benefits, educational support and 401K matches. They’re looking for the right package to support their life and family outside of work.

So if you aren’t offering the right benefits, you could be risking losing some of your most talented candidates. Make sure your Human Resources department is performing an annual review of your benefits package and seeing how it stacks up against your competitors and other businesses in your industry.

4. Stay on top of workplace dynamics.

Speaking of culture, make sure yours is right where it needs to be. Most organizations roll out their core values and put them on the walls, but sometimes they have no idea where to start in carrying those values and that culture out. Keep getting regular feedback from your employees on a quarterly basis via anonymous surveys and suggestion boxes. Give them every opportunity to vent their concerns in a safe way.

If employees don’t feel like they have a channel for sharing their grievances then they could take them to review sites like GlassDoor. Even a few bad reviews can tank your presence there and dissuade other job searchers from applying. So be responsive and open to feedback. And make sure you are replying to negative reviews on LinkedIn to let your employees know that you’re listening and constantly working to improve their working experience.

5. Act fast!

Some hiring managers lose great candidates because they don’t act quickly enough. In a job seeker’s market, your candidates are probably interviewing for multiple positions at a time. So even if your company is their first choice, they may be forced to make a tough decision and take another offer if your recruitment process isn’t moving quickly enough.

Make sure you cap the number of interviews candidates go through and the deliberation period among team members. An extra 3 or 4 days could mean you’re losing that perfect applicant to another employer who’s ready to move, faster.

Meet the Author

Evelyn Vega is the Founder and President at Staffing Strong and the Past President of the Phoenix American Marketing Association. Since 1999, she’s made her career about supporting her clients in building meaningful careers and partnering with businesses in finding quality hires. In her free time, Evelyn sits on various advisory boards and enjoys practicing on her drum kit!