4 Things Your Talent Won’t Tell You

134195454Pulling in the top talent isn’t easy, especially for staffing agencies. As much as a third of your potential candidate pool may also register with one or more of your competitors. And, overall net promoter scores with temporary workers fell from 45 percent to 42 percent over the past year. When a job seeker with niche skills and/or highly specialized experience comes along, you need to put yourself in their shoes if you want to have the best chance of making the connection. Here’s what your potential talent may be thinking but not telling you, and some ways to address their concerns.

1. Your applicant intake experience impacts my decision to work for you. For 75 percent of applicants, the experience they have when interviewing or applying for a job influences their decision to work for you, according to a recent study commissioned by Montage. Applying and interviewing are both significant parts of the overall candidate experience, which starts before a temporary worker even applies and extends all the way through the placement. In the current war for talent, every advantage helps. Spend some time each year “secret shopping” your own application process to see if it’s organized, streamlined and welcoming to applicants.

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2. Skype was tough to use for that interview. With the tech-savvy nature of today’s business world, applicants aren’t likely to admit that connecting with you via Skype was frustrating. But in a recent Montage study of 200 active job seekers who interviewed via Skype, less than a quarter agreed that Skype was easy to use for the interview4. With no technical support, each person must install the application and test their connection completely on their own. If you want to attract the candidates most in demand, consider using a video interviewing solution that’s purpose-built for hiring. As the data show, that first impression matters, and you can optimize its power by using it to market your talent pool to end clients as well.

3. If you’re late to the interview, I’m already losing interest. When a talented applicant is waiting, punctuality is more than common courtesy — it’s actually a necessity. Eighty percent of active job seekers said they are left with a negative impression of the company if the interviewer is more than 10 minutes late. Be realistic when scheduling and pay attention to punctuality as a best practice in your firm. Then, in those few situations when you do run over the clock, offer a genuine apology and a valid reason for your tardiness to win over your candidate.

4. Your decision to hire me shouldn’t take more than two interviews. When asked how many rounds of interviews are too many before it impacts their perception of the company, 41 percent of job seekers said more than two, while 67 percent said more than three. The majority of applicants may consider too many interviews an inconvenience or even a red flag indicating disorganization or indecision. For staffing agencies, that perception can mean the difference between a bench full of the best talent or a pool of mediocre workers. It’s essential to ask the right questions and get the right people involved during that first — and hopefully only — on-premise interview.

Talented Individuals Have Choices
No industry understands the value of the individual more than staffing. So when enticing top talent into your agency — whether in person or virtually — you need to be at the top of your game. Secure their loyalty and, in exchange, place them into rewarding ongoing assignments. The research cited above proves this fact: Talented individuals have choices. They are influenced by how they are treated. Speed and efficiency are critical in hiring.

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Patricia Hughes
Patricia Hughes is vice president of strategic alliances at Montage, where she leads all partnership strategy, pursuit and management for RPO, MSP, technology and referral partners.

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