Recruitment – How to win the battle for talent

For quite some time now, the goal posts for business have had to change.  Not just in terms of how they need to operate in order to meet customer or client expectations.  But also how they attract desired talent, and perhaps more importantly retain them by meeting employee expectations.

Here are Culture’s top tips to attract and retain top talent.

  1. What message does your business communicate?

Nothing hurts a business’s credibility more than inconsistency and mixed messages.  This is no less true, when considering it from the context of attracting a future employee.  Is the message your company gives out on its website in line with what’s present on your other platforms?  Does the content and tone of an advert for a new role, tie in with what a potential candidate will see when researching your company as a potential match?  Will their conversation with your people resonate with what they have previously read, seen and heard?

A consistent message and picture of what your organisation values, across all touch-points, be it in the form of text and images on line, to what they hear and see during an interview process, will give your business a clear, defined and coherent voice when attracting new people.

  1. The role of a company’s culture in retaining top talent

Consider what type of culture you want to create within your company.  Your recruitment process and the type of individual you employ, will directly influence this.  We’re all aware of terms such as ‘engaged employees’ – ‘inclusive culture’ – ‘flexible working hours’.  And it seems virtually obvious to say that if your company can create a culture whereby its employees feel valued, they will be actively engaged.  More than 80% of millennials have said they are actively engaged at work due to an inclusive culture.  The take away is, the more your company can create a culture where your employees feel valued, work in an inclusive environment, and have a voice that wants to be listened to. They will positively promote your company, work harder and want to remain with you far longer.

  1. “It’s all about perception”

As Bob Hoskins once said, ‘its good to talk’.  Well be under no illusions, any perspective candidates will be using a myriad of platforms to research your company, and weigh a company’s own self portrayed image; the one they see on your website, on LinkedIn etc.  With that of what actual employees, past and present, say about you.  You cannot please everyone all the time, however these platforms can be a source of valuable feedback and insight into a specific area(s) which needs focus to put right.  If left unchecked, it could prevent that right-fit candidate from applying.

  1. Will your existing employees be credible advocates?

We are more likely to listen to our peers than an organisations marketing department, irrespective of how slick it may be.  It is therefore paramount, that the message and inclusive, valued employee culture your company should be striving for is not only credible, but is reflected in your employees and workspace.  Just like you can tell if someone is genuinely smiling by looking in their eyes, a prospective employee will be able to decipher whether the blurb coming from the interviewer regaling them with how good the work place, environment and culture are, is genuine or not.

Your goal, should be to want to have your prospective employee walk through a vibrant workspace, witnessing your current employees working, being able to soak up either that hive of activity or simply seeing another person genuinely turned on and engaged.  Have your interview rooms in a space of the building so you can show off this genuine, healthy working environment.  Be mindful to how you may also capitalise on this good culture, and employee engagement, by providing a defined space your employees can ‘own’ on professional networks and intranets.

  1. Everyone’s a customer

Remember when we spoke about perception.  Well a candidate who didn’t end up becoming an employee is just as able to review your company on what their experience was up to the point of going your separate ways and placing this in the public domain for others to read and take note.  It is therefore important to deliver a positive, consistent and well managed journey.  Being transparent with not only what you expect and are looking for in a potential employee, but what they can expect from the interview process, timelines, stages and when the final decision is due to be made.

  1. Are you visible?

Make sure you’re in the space where your top talent is.  Seems an obvious one, but as that sticker on the back of an articulate says, ‘if you can’t see my wing mirrors, I can’t see you’.  You may have to be creative in order to create this visibility, be it through sponsoring professional events, facilitating social or industry ‘best practice’ networking, or good old-fashioned advertising in an industry relevant website or trade magazine.

Specialist recruiters are invaluable in this area and will be a brand of their own in a given space.  Business’s like to use the word partner more and more when describing their ideal client / customer relationship, but never has this word been more relevant or important to how a company should view their recruitment relationship.  Invest time in the relationship, not just to gain applicants with the desired skill set, but as we’ve spoken about here already, getting the right cultural fit to complement your existing workspace environment should be just as high on a clients list of wants.  It’s no coincidence that Culture Recruitment's strap line states: ‘fit is everything’.

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19th November