3 Simple Tips for Developing a Recruitment Plan

In my last post, I discussed ways the unemployment rate makes HR’s job challenging and how the skills gap adds to that. While these issues may seem new, they aren’t novel concepts. There are always going to be skills that are high in demand and low in supply — although these skills may not always be the same. There are also always going to be ups and downs in the unemployment rate, but don’t worry because people will always be looking for better jobs (or maybe even just something that’s different from their current role), so you’ll always have the ability to attract new talent. These changes in the job market are what makes being a human resources professional challenging and exciting! Below are some tips to help you in filling the roles that may cause challenges.

#1 Look at employee potential, and not just current skills and experience

You may have heard complaints from recent college grads about how job descriptions for entry-level jobs require you to have 1-2 years of experience. In addition to experience levels though, there are a number of skills listed on job descriptions as “must haves,” even though some of those skills would be easy to teach on the job.

When looking at job applications, especially during times when unemployment rates are low, and supply of in-demand skills is low, consider looking at candidates for who they can be rather than who they currently are. Given some on the job training and maybe a class here or there on the weekend, can you mold them into the perfect employee? You may need to bring them in with a lower title, and that’s fine, especially if you can promote them once they’ve developed the necessary skills to perform well. In the end, you’ll have an employee who is thankful for your patience and investment in their development.

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#2 Look into training as a way to keep valuable employees

One way to keep the top talent you’ve acquired and also manage any skill gaps within your company is to put more emphasis on education and development. Do you have some all-star employees who just doesn’t fit into your current organizational structure anymore? Consider paying for them to take a class in a new, more relevant field that they’re interested in or even allowing them to take a learning sabbatical to dive into a new field. There are plenty of courses online, but there are also a lot of options for those who prefer classroom settings. General Assembly is an organization that is well-known for providing courses in high-demand fields. Maybe you just hired someone, but they could benefit from a little job-specific training or developing a new skill. Showing new employees that you’re interested in helping them in their development can go a long way in keeping them satisfied and engaged.

Keep in mind that it might not be enough to pay for the class(es), you should also be working with your employees to make sure that they still have time for themselves and their families. If they have all of the skills but are too exhausted to use them, that’s not going to help you or them.

#3 Improve your employee value proposition (EVP)

Your EVP includes everything you are doing to make candidates want to work for you more than another company. It’s similar to a USP (unique selling proposition)–which is something that makes your company unique in a buyer’s eyes. Your EVP is essential in making it easier to attract passive candidates and to ensure that your top picks don’t get away. Training (mentioned above) is one way to add to your company’s EVP, but there are many more.

  • Flexible work arrangements are common, and are attractive to potential candidates. Candidates want to be able to take time off to go on vacation and spend time with friends and family. Make sure your employees are able to maintain a healthy work/life balance with flexible work hours, PTO, and work-from-home options.
  • Strong company culture is a great way to show candidates that your company is about more than just the bottom line. Culture is playing an increasingly important role in employment decisions, and it may just be the piece of the puzzle that you need to attract top talent in other companies are fighting for the same candidates.
  • Show off your company’s values to attract candidates who appreciate purpose-driven companies. The same values that create a USP for customers may be the something to highlight for potential employees. Does your company donate a portion of proceeds to charity? Do you only use furniture made out of recycled goods in your office? These are unique characteristics that may attract highly skilled candidates who share your values.

No matter what the employment landscape looks like, there will always be challenges, and there will always be something that you can do differently than your competitors to attract the right talent. In some situations, you may be able to look internally to find all-star employees who you can train into a new role. In other situations, you may need to accept paying more for the candidates with the skills and experience that your company needs. Finally, it may be as simple as offering opportunities to work remotely. You never really know what exactly will influence a candidate to choose you over another opportunity, but remember, you can always ask them what will help them make up their mind.

Jordan McElwain
Jordan McElwain is a digital marketer and writer who shares her knowledge of the latest trends in B2B news and software.

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