In a job market as tight as this one, it’s critical that organizations have the right hiring strategies in place to attract top candidates. The best way to recruit the best talent to your organization is to have a well-defined process and have a candidate-centric process in place.
Some of the hiring strategies shared below may seem obvious, but we see far too many organizations fail to deliver on the basics. Quite simply, hiring the best requires calculated effort by HR and recruitment teams; we’ve outlined our top 10 hiring strategies to help ensure a successful hire.
Top Hiring Strategies for 2020
1. Write a clear and comprehensive job description
Before you take your position to market, you’ll need to start by writing a compelling job description. Your job descriptions should provide candidates with an accurate overview of the role’s responsibilities and specific skills required to fulfill them. The position details should focus on the kinds of relationships needed to be built with customers and partners and the optimal style of leadership required.
We’re seeing more employers include a psychographic profile in their job descriptions and place more importance on cultural fit. We’d still like to see more organizations improve their job descriptions by making them more candidate-centric. Candidates are interested in what makes the organization a great place to work and the ways the can make an impact in the position they’re considering. A great job description will include these details and be written in a way that attracts top candidates.
2. Conduct an employer brand analysis regularly
You will need to know how your industry’s A+ executives are perceiving your employer brand. Resources you should use to monitor your organization’s brand include:
- Employee surveys to discover insight into your culture and what factors determine their contentment and/or dissatisfaction. Find out what is unique about your organization.
- Sites like glassdoor.com have rankings and reviews from current and past employees. It is important to read these periodically to identify how your organization is being perceived as a whole. What perceptions need to be overcome?
- In-depth interviews with candidates to understand how well you met their expectations and to identify areas of improvement. How did they feel about your hiring process? (Our research shows a huge disconnect between the experience that organizations think they deliver and the experience that candidates have.)
- Exit interviews with employees leaving your organization.
3. Deliver an optimal candidate experience
Use the data collected from your employer brand analysis to create your employer value proposition statement that will drive your messaging to candidates. Your message should authentic and realistically depict what it’s like to work at your organization. Map out every touchpoint, starting with the job posting and application process, and strategize on how to deliver a positive experience that is consistent with your employer brand. What message needs to be communicated to candidates at what point?
4. “Sell” candidates on the opportunity
Generate a list of three or four “sizzle” points that will be used to market the position and organization to prospective candidates. For example, is the position a great opportunity to build a team from the ground up? Does it require developing a strategy for an innovative project or improving customer satisfaction? Understand what will appeal to candidates and make sure you’re highlighting what is great about the position throughout the process. Identify what the community has to offer prospective candidates. What would entice someone to relocate to the area? Highlight any additional “perks” associated with the role. Are there opportunities for overseas travel? Extended vacation time or incentive bonuses?
5. Streamline the hiring process to yield faster results
Use your internal pipeline for succession planning within your organization. Invest in your high-potential talent to give them the skills and experience they’ll need to advance when the opportunity arises. Not only will this help you get the exact qualifications you’re looking for, but it will also go a long way in improving your employer brand. You should also nurture your contacts and leverage referrals because referrals from within your network often make the most successful hires. Always make sure you have a candidate shortlist and are casting a wide net to select from. Working with an executive search firm that has an extensive network of top-quality candidates can help tremendously with this.
6. Be transparent about your hiring process and timeline
Once your internal team is aligned on the steps you’ve defined in your hiring process and your proposed timeline, it is crucial that you share it with your slate of candidates so they know what to expect. Block times for interviews as the search is starting, making sure you’re planning around holidays, business trips, and vacations.
7. Simplify your application process
Given the Salary History Bans that are in effect for several states, your applications should be adjusted. Include “expected” or “desired” compensation packages instead of historical information. Eliminate the current or previous compensation question from all online application forms and consult with a legal expert to ensure these online application forms are fully complying with current legislation. Make sure you fully evaluate your application and trim unneeded questions.
8. Communicate with candidates about their status
No candidate wants to feel like your hiring process leads them into a black hole, submitting an application only to wait a long time before ever hearing about where they stand. Providing timely feedback is a good way for organizations to differentiate themselves and impress top tier candidates. Create and share a communications plan with a clearly defined process for how and when candidates will hear from you as a first step. Our research shows that that better communication is the #1 area job seekers feel that employers should focus on to improve their candidate experience.
9. Collect feedback from candidates about their interview experience
Our Kirby Partners surveys of director level and above candidates, conducted in 2019, revealed that there is a disconnect between what candidates expect versus how HR leaders feel about the candidate experience their organization provides. Less than 20% of the HR leaders said that they regularly request feedback from job candidates. Getting timely insight from candidates is the key to knowing where your process falls short and what specific areas need improvement.
10. Set up your new hire for success with a strategic onboarding program
Effective onboarding is a process that starts at offer acceptance and continues on through year one; it reduces the time it takes for a new hire to be effective and integrated into their new organization. There are four key stages in a new employee’s onboarding process: before they start work, day one, week one, and week two and beyond. Follow an onboarding checklist to make sure all important steps are taken to promote their successful transition.
Implementing these hiring strategies will place your organization ahead of the game and in a position to hire the new decade’s top talent. Partnering with an experienced executive search firm like Kirby Partners can also elevate your hiring success. Contact us today to learn how we can assist you with your hiring needs in 2020.