6 ways to hire the right candidates in today’s tight labor market
The market is tight, but great talent is out there. Try these strategies to locate it.
In a time of record unemployment and a time when there are more job openings than job seekers, it’s harder than ever to find the right fit for positions you need to fill.
“Candidates have so many options right now,” says Stephanie Naznitsky, executive director of OfficeTeam, a division of Robert Half. “It’s important that a company sell themselves well and paint the picture of what the future will look like for them if the company chooses to bring them on board.”
Before you set out to make your next round of hires, look at our updated list of great hire best practices:
Really hone your job description
Make sure the job description has been updated and reflects what the job requires. If you can, have the outgoing jobholder give the writeup a once-over to make sure it’s correct. If the job description isn’t accurate, you’re setting the organization up for either a bad fit or quick turnover.
“I accepted a job as a regional HR manager, and the job description said, ‘25% travel,’” says Matthew Burr, a human resources consultant in Elmira, NY. “The job was 90% travel. After six months, I said, ‘This isn’t for me.’”
In a tight market, candidates can pick and choose among opportunities. “The more upfront and honest we can be in the description and in conversations, the better chance we’ll have of landing the ideal candidate,” Burr says. (You might even consider a video job description, which you can create at Monster Studios.)
Get your brand out there
It’s crucial that your company has a coherent public presence, and that it appeals to potential employees.
“HR departments and marketing departments need to work together to make sure their brand identity is well conveyed and aligned and consistent,” says Linda Pophal, owner and marketing communications consultant with Strategic Communications in Chippewa Falls, WI.
“What exactly is it we want to be, how is it supported through our products and services, and how are you going to communicate that when we’re in the process of filling a position?”
People who are applying to spots at your firm should understand what your brand means and how it’s reflected in the specific job available. If you need some guidance, consider The Foundry, which helps companies build better, more compelling career sites.
Video job ads are a great opportunity for candidates to get a better feel for a company and for the job in particular. They bring your firm to life, so to speak, giving you another way to attract potential applicants. In fact, eight out of 10 Americans feel that a video of a recruiter talking about a role as part of a job ad would help them better understand a job opportunity, according to Monster’s 2019 State of the Candidate Survey
“Candidates can get a good sense of where they’ll be working and who they’ll be working with,” Pophal says. “They can also use augmented and virtual reality to actually let job applicants put themselves in that position to get a sense of what it would be like.”
Consider how much time people spend on screens and engaging in interactive content. “It’s definitely an interesting model, and it’s probably going to be the wave of the future in order to attract and engage some of the younger generational talent,” Burr says. Monster Studios can help with a variety of video projects.
Incorporate search tools
Technology can make your search for the best hires easier. In a market where the ideal candidates may be employed elsewhere, or in which there are many applicants for one position, knowing how to search and using the right tools will not only save you time, but can get you better results.
“There are certain tools that are really helpful to screen through resumes in a portal,” Naznitsky says. “And there are a number of tools out there that I’ve found larger companies tend to use because they have more response to particular jobs.”
For instance, Monster’s SearchMonster tool allows users to search for and engage qualified candidates in a variety of ways. The platform allows you to narrow or broaden your parameters as necessary and drill down for additional information when needed.
SearchMonster also delivers qualified candidate matches ranked and scored based on your criteria. Candidates are scored based on their strengths and depth of skills.
“[Tools like this] would help recruiters screen out people who may not have any of the required skills,” Naznitsky says.
If you’re looking for the 100% perfect worker, you may never find him. Consider the potential of the candidates you’re seeing, rather than trying to check all the boxes.
“We absolutely need to be open to people that might not be a total fit, but we can help build their skills,” Burr says. “Companies need to look outside of just the degree requirements and see what they’re bringing to the table.”
For instance, are they motivated? Do they have a desire to succeed? Are they engaged and willing to work hard? “If they possess those skills, those qualities and traits, that should take a very high consideration, provided you have a good leadership team that can train them in the fundamentals,” Naznitsky says.
Develop your existing employees
Consider your current workers your brand ambassadors—everywhere they go, they’re advertising and informing people about what it’s like to work there. In finding the right people to work for you, it’s key that your current workers spread a good message about your company.
“Employees are a very trusted source of information about a company and whether it’s a good place to work,” Pophal says. “It’s important that they’re saying positive things.”
That means crafting a great workplace culture and creating a company that fits what you’re selling. “You can’t just pretend you’re a great place to work,” Pophal says. “It has to bea good place to work, and employees have to like working there.”
Monster has the tools and technology to help you attract and hire the right candidates, even in a tight labor market.