Employers: Thinking outside the box to attract the right candidate for the job


The holidays are over, a new year has begun, and most of the part-time seasonal holiday jobs have come to an end. That leaves many of those seasonal part-time workers wondering if they should find another part-time or even a full-time job. And that provides a great opportunity for businesses that need to hire.

The key to finding and hiring a great employee is matching the right people to the right jobs. The current business climate, with “Help Wanted” and “Now Hiring” signs commonplace at many businesses, suggests that’s not always as easy as it sounds.

Attracting the ideal candidate
Employers have the most hiring success when they develop a vision of the ideal job candidate for their job opening and market their job offer to that ideal candidate specifically, rather than creating a general or generic ad. Ads and job descriptions should be as specific as possible and should include the information that will appeal to the ideal candidate and provide that candidate with an incentive to apply for the job in the first place.

In the current market, where there are often multiple employers competing for candidates, employers need to be sure their job offers are competitive and put their best offers out there. Pay, benefit packages, longevity bonuses, profit sharing, time off, and flexibility are just a few of the things potential employees compare before applying for or accepting a job offer. Company culture should also be carefully considered. Word gets around about how organizations treat their employees, and employees talk to their friends, family, and acquaintances which paints a picture of what working for the company is like, for better and worse.

Thinking outside the box
Employers may need to think outside the box of traditional hiring practices. Instead of hiring one full-time employee to fill a position, for instance, they may have more success hiring two part-time employees. Part-time positions, especially those with flexibility, open the position up to an entirely new pool of candidates, such as individuals who are retired or semi-retired, attending college, have kids in school, or just don’t want to work a full-time job.

Employers could also consider whether certain jobs might be structured differently to appeal to more candidates and in particular, the kind of candidates they want to hire, with the qualifications and work ethic they seek. Is working from home an option? Flexible hours? Etc.

Delivering on promises
Most importantly, employers need to deliver on what they promise, to retain both new hires and current employees. They need to ensure their current employees are also being adequately compensated and fairly treated in comparison to the new hires. Otherwise, they could lose their current staff and have to start the recruitment and hiring process all over again. Employees working for a company who learn new hires have a better “deal” than they have, despite their years of employment and dedication to a company, can become upset or disgruntled and even quit.

But the promise to employees is about more than just pay and benefits. More and more employees are concerned with the culture at work and how employers and employees interact with one another. It’s not just about the paycheck; it’s about how they feel when they’re at work. And it’s not just about jeans days and pizza at the plant. It’s about the everyday interactions, employers showing confidence in their employees rather than micromanaging, and how management treats employees on a daily basis.

Employees want to feel like they’re doing something that matters and making a difference, for the company or the community or the world at large, based on their particular contribution.

Managers make the difference in how employees view their contribution based on their interactions and communications with employees. There’s a saying that employees don’t quit companies, they quit managers.

Employers need to ensure that all of the managers in their company are delivering on the promises the hiring managers make. And that everyone, from the CEO to the maintenance and janitorial staff, are fairly treated and feel valued and respected and have a genuine understanding of how what they do for the company matters in the bigger picture.

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