With June unemployment rates showing that our region is currently at an average of 3.8 percent, it is no wonder we are seeing an uptick in the number of clients coming to us with recruitment and retention questions. It’s definitely an applicant’s market at present, and the process of competing with bigger companies that can offer bigger salaries and benefits packages can seem daunting.
However, don’t get discouraged. According to ZipRecruiter, 64 percent of job seekers prefer small-to-midsize companies over large ones.
Develop your employer brand.
Unlike your corporate brand that is customer facing, your employer brand is (future) employee facing. Small and mid-sized businesses should build reputations that can be fostered through their social media presence. Having a staff happy hour? Make sure it’s captured and shared.
Build a talent network.
Just as customers search you out before you know them, so do potential candidates. Have a LinkedIn presence for both your business and yourself. This offers a great way for potential employees to get to know you and add you to their list of possible employers. Make sure they know you’re hiring by sharing job announcements over social media.
Highlight your value.
What about your business is unique that will attract the type of candidate you are looking for? Do you try to foster a family environment? Is the sky the limit in terms of future opportunities within the company? Make sure you highlight how your company is different and adds value to a candidate’s career.
Differentiate yourself with creative benefits.
Opportunities to work from home, bring your dog to work, participate in professional development or community service, or find flexibility in the workday work hours (allowing a half an hour lunch or the ability to work four tens) are all ways to entice potential candidates. Consider what you are willing to offer outright, what you might be willing to discuss, and elements that are simply nonnegotiable given the job description.
Don’t do it alone.
One recent client had always struggled with recruiting candidates. He decided to turn to indeed.com and used their pay-per-click option. He was surprised at the number of qualified candidates that submitted resumes within the first week. Instead of the one or two he had experienced in the past, he received more than a dozen. Gone are the days of posting a job on your website alone. Consider other avenues of getting the word out like indeed.com or ziprecruiter.com.
Retaining employees during times of low unemployment can also be tricky business. Now is a time when current employees might notice other job possibilities outside of your organization. There is no better time to develop an employee retention strategy.
First, rank your employees by order of importance. Then ask yourself what you are doing to retain your top tier. Make sure you are proactive in meeting their needs. Possible offerings to consider include: providing performance-based incentives, helping them further their education, understanding and adjusting to their personal needs, and working with them to create a clear plan that outlines how they can achieve their future career goals.
Want more guidance on attracting and retaining employees? Reach out to us to schedule a FREE one-on-one meeting, so we can assist you with your business’ specific needs.