The U.S. Department of Labor‘s July 2017 jobs report showed unemployment at a steady 4.3 percent. With over 200,000 new jobs created and nearly everyone who wants one already working, pickings are awfully slim.
What’s in your talent acquisition bag of tricks when times are tough? With so few applicants on the market and more hard-to-reach passive candidates, you need to stand out. Here are 5 ways you can source better and more efficiently.
#1: Think About Relocation Assistance
The more scare the best talent the further you might have to go to find an excellent candidate. Telecommuting possibilities can broaden sourcing horizons for people who live across the country or even on the other side of the globe. But many jobs, such as in the medical field, require employees to work on-site. If remote workers aren’t an option, relocation assistance might help.
Leaving a secure job for a new one might be a nerve-wracking idea, especially considering the expense. Relocation assistance, says WorkPlaceGroup, might be just tempting enough.
Although it’s traditionally limited to high-level executive positions, more companies are offering a leg-up with moving expenses for non-executive roles. It proves that the company is serious and eases some of the anxiety that accompanies making such a life-altering switch.
#2: Offer Meaningful Work/Life Balance Incentives
More money gets almost anyone’s attention. But if the budget is already tight, it might not be an option. Fortunately, people aren’t just motivated by cold, hard cash. Creative work/life balance incentives can turn heads, as well.
A flexible work environment is becoming popular, not just for its ability to bring creative teams together but also to accommodate people who don’t operate best in a nine-to-five job. Fast Company says, ”try replacing the structured workday with an agenda of tasks to accomplish within a set window, then leave it to employees to figure out how best to accomplish them.”
Goal-oriented work days give employees a better sense of freedom and can lead to a tighter-knit team when a group works together to set a schedule and meet a deadline. This plays into the need for a sense of accomplishment and to make a difference, says Fast Company. According to a Telephonica study, 74 percent of Millennial leaders believe that they can.
#3: Build a Promotional Campaign That Motivates Candidates to Apply
After working hard to get a candidate’s attention, convincing them to follow through with an application might be something very different. It’s a big step, especially if they’re happy in their job, and one that sets a course of action in motion. ”What if I don’t get the job?” Or perhaps even more unnerving, ”What if I do?”
WorkPlaceGroup says incentives to apply can bring in more applicants. Author, Steve Linderer, explains that the company had a successful holiday promotion that spoke to applicants’ desire to do something good for humanity. Their ”Use Your Resume to Fight Hunger” campaign donated food to the Salvation Army for every application received. It was enough to nudge thousands of new applicants to follow through.
What social causes matter most to the people you want to recruit? It takes a little research and executive buy-in, but it could create a bountiful harvest of new applications.
#4: Don’t Just Build a Recruitment Brand, Manage It
Everyone talks about brand building. You need a brand to support an appealing offer to candidates. In fact, whether or not you create it, businesses that deal with the public will have a brand based on their interactions. Past clients have the power to shape brand image, which can either make you a job candidate magnet at best or a pariah at worst. But building a brand is only part of the job. Brand management takes strategy.
Fast Company says a business brand is shaped whether or not there’s input from the company. Check out the employer brand on Glassdoor to see what they mean. Then check out your image as a recruiter. Because employees play such a large role in brand image, Glassdoor is probably the best place to start investigating. Don’t forget about all social media channels, too.
You may find negative feedback about the employer brand or the recruitment brand. That’s OK because they’re teaching moments. You may also find positive feedback. Regardless of what people, all feedback is a brand management opportunity. If it’s negative, you know what needs attention. If it’s positive, you know which strengths to build on.
#5: Be Prepared for a Counter Offer
Expect some resistance after a job offer is made. As badly as you need qualified candidates, employers who already have them might not want to let go. If they give the employee a counter-offer, how will you respond once you hear the news?
The time to plan a counter-offer strategy is before you need it. Can the employer offer better pay or a creative vacation time or PTO option? Incentives can make or break the hard work you’ve done to match jobs with candidates.
Counter-offer incentives might require even more creativity, but the personal nature gives you a slight edge. After putting time and effort into sourcing the candidate, you know more about them. You’ll have a better idea about what matters most and can craft a counter-counter offer that really resonates.
The current full employment economy won’t last forever, but it’s probably here for a while. In the meantime, recruiters need to redouble efforts in creativity, strategic planning so bumps in the road won’t derail efforts, and managing a recruitment brand that makes candidates look twice.