Studies show that the average employee spends around 90,000 hours at work throughout their career, about a third of their entire life. Most people would cringe at that number. But how many of your employees would consider that time well spent?
When we get up in the morning and get ready for the day, we want to know that our work has an impact. We want to feel valued by our managers, respected by our colleagues and accepted by our inner critic.
How do we achieve that? Well, it has a lot to do with not just where we work but how we work and who we work for. As an employer, it is up to you to create an environment where these elements are accessible to every employee. If you focus on these five strategies as a guide for attracting and retaining good talent, what you will gain in return will be well worth the investment.
It has been said that 'your vibe attracts your tribe'. Having a strong brand identity will have high-quality talent knocking on your door even when you're not advertising a role.
While the heavy lifting usually falls on candidates during the recruitment process, employers have their work cut out for them too. So while candidates will polish up their resumes and carefully construct their cover letters to sell themselves, businesses should do the same. This means posting company updates on social media, keeping native content fresh, staying active within the industry and getting involved in the wider community.
Brand identity often hinges on three things – values, tone of voice and value proposition. Take the time to develop these elements, as they will play a huge role in defining what kinds of candidates you appeal to. Once candidates know who you are and feel a strong connection to your brand, they're more likely to actively seek out opportunities within your organisation. They might even use a tool such as LiveHire, a talent pooling system and partner of Referoo that allows candidates to "follow" particular companies and be notified when a position becomes available.
People talk. People also post reviews, and a bad rap on Glassdoor could send potential candidates running. That's why it's so important to celebrate your employees' wins and share them with the world (or at least your LinkedIn network). Employees who feel valued and respected in their role are far more likely to become brand advocates and share their experiences with their wider professional network.
This is where having a great referral program comes into play. If your employees love where they work and are genuinely invested in the company's success, they'll share your motivation for wanting to attract the top talent. They might share opportunities with their past colleagues, which will see your talent pool grow organically.
Open and ongoing communication is essential to the hiring process. Nobody likes to be left in the lurch, and the last thing you want is for an unsuccessful candidate to taint the rest of your talent pool with reports of a negative experience.
Remember, just because a candidate isn't a fit for one particular role doesn't mean they won't be perfect for an opening further down the track. Candidate care means nurturing leads on an ongoing basis, so they remain in your talent pool and are more likely to be open to new opportunities that pop up later on.
Contacting every single applicant sounds impossible (especially when one job listing can attract hundreds of candidates), but there are plenty of integrated systems that can ensure no applicant slips through the cracks. Referoo can be used in conjunction with Australia's leading ATS and CRM solutions to ensure every candidate is handled with care.
There are some extroverted people who thrive in social environments; they're the first ones to sign up to corporate events and conventions and love connecting with new people on industry forums. However, for others, networking can feel like a bit of a drag. That said, it is crucial to getting the word out about your company and will pay off in spades when it comes to securing great talent.
While we wait for face-to-face events to make a comeback in most states, digital networking is where it's at right now. Be sure to get involved in industry round tables and tele-networking events where you can. You might even have a go at hosting your own webinar series!
This ties in with your brand identity but is worth calling out on its own. Proudly displaying the qualities that are important to your company will help to attract the right candidates. People are beginning to realise that money isn't everything – today's candidates want more out of their careers than a paycheque. Working for an organisation whose values align with their own is the best way to inspire great work, loyalty and even advocacy.
As an employer, you might consider offering paid leave for employees to volunteer with charitable organisations, or you might endeavour to become a certified B-Corp or release a social impact report. Whatever it is that matters to your organisation, tell the world about it, and watch the talent come rushing in.