If anything, the global impact of Coronavirus and the wave of the Great Resignation that followed has heightened the labor shortage situation.
Statistics state that the American workforce witnessed the lowest candidate application rate in the past 50 years despite 6.665 million job openings in 2021 alone.
The hiring landscape has changed drastically, hinting recruiters to optimize their approach with changing times.
With a candidate-driven market and changing priorities of job seekers, candidates now expect more than just a good paycheck.
While compensation packages remain a priority, job seekers also treat company culture, recognition, and values as a yardstick.
But how and what exactly can the recruiters do to hire employees during labor shortage?
Let's find out.
1. Highlight the Company Culture
Currently, job openings are available over and above their demand, making candidates selective about their employment opportunities. As a result, companies are struggling to close their positions.
The availability of so many employment opportunities boils down to how well companies treat their employees and the work culture.
Recruiters must stand out in front of job seekers by showing them why their company is an excellent workplace.
Recruiters can help improve their client's work culture by–
- Holding peer review sessions and focusing on hiring efficiently, not hastily—leaving a positive impression on candidates.
- Not just highlighting the milestones of your client but also talking about the achievements of their employees like promotions, recognition, and rewards.
- Introducing new hires on their social platforms and encouraging existing employees to interact with the posts to demonstrate teamwork and show support.
In a nutshell, showcase how much your client cares, appreciates, and respects their employees.
2. Leverage Your Candidate Database
Try revisiting your existing candidate database when filling vacant job positions during a labor shortage.
Recruiters don't realize it, but their database is a goldmine for candidate sourcing!
Dig up old applications you received earlier for the same profile and reach out to these candidates via a warm call or email.
As you catch up with these old candidates, behave like a salesperson who wants to showcase all the good things an open position offers.
The passive job seekers from your database can significantly reduce your hiring time for a position.
It's also essential to proactively nurture old candidates via a pipeline to prepare for future open positions.
3. Showcase Benefits in Job Descriptions
One of the most obvious ways to attract more candidates is to give them what they seek.
Most working professionals became accustomed to remote work during the pandemic.
So why not offer them as much of that as you can?
Here are two suggestions to incorporate into your job descriptions:
A. Work Flexibility
Work flexibility is advantageous to employees as it makes up for excellent retention and candidate attraction techniques.
This calls for recruiters to up their hiring game now.
So here are some ways you can offer candidates work flexibility:
a) Give candidates the option to choose a working model, including—a hybrid, remote, or a work from office model.
b) Offer candidates the freedom to choose their time to start work or keep a two-hour flexibility window. Don't restrict them.
c) Let new hires enjoy a rotational shift policy where they can choose if they will be working on their predefined tasks in the morning, evening, or late at night.
Implementing such policies and mentioning these benefits in the job description would do wonders!
You can implement an employee scheduling software if you are worried about attendance management and tracking work hours.
B. Benefits & Compensation
Providing benefits and compensation related to health and wellness can give you a competitive edge as this has become a priority for today's job seekers. These benefits will also position your company that values its workforce.
Here are some benefits worth implementing and mentioning to attract candidates:
a) Appoint a therapist to check employees' mental health.
b) Paying workers fairly for overtime and regular hours.
c) Offering health insurance or benefits that offers free online consultation and other benefits to keep a check on the overall well-being of workers and their families.
These benefits are an excellent way to attract talent and make existing employees loyal, reducing attrition.
4. Don't Overlook Employment Gaps
The pandemic brought unfortunate incidents for everyone in all aspects of life, and mass firing was one of those incidents.
Employment gaps were seen as an alien concept before the pandemic.
However, the stigma around the employment gap, intentional or unintentional, is still prevalent.
To promote equal opportunities, LinkedIn recently started giving options to users to reason their employment gap.
It's time companies become more accepting of employment gaps by starting with untapped groups like moms, freshers, retired or senior people, or ones who lost their jobs.
Recruiters can use this opportunity to approach these groups on social media platforms and prioritize these applications.
As word spreads in the job market, this would position you as a great recruiter and help you close positions quickly, even with an acute labor shortage.
5. Optimize the Application Process
Look back at times you were looking for a job and applied at various places.
Did you apply to companies with a very lengthy application procedure?
Sometimes you would have, sometimes you might have left the application halfway, and sometimes you dismissed the idea of applying there.
So, the idea is simple.
Make your job application process as quick and easy as if you were in a candidate's position!
A long and complicated application would lose great potential hires, and that's not a risk employers want to take during a labor shortage.
Ask only for necessary details like a resume, cover letter, last drawn salary, notice period, etc.
Follow the best practices and don't ghost candidates whether the application is rejected or accepted.
6. Improve Employee Onboarding
Employees decide in the first six months if they wish to stay with a company or not, and in a job market that's so candidate-driven, it would happen even sooner!
Make sure you have a solid employee onboarding structure for your client to introduce new hires into their system for higher employee retention in the long term.
Ask your client to follow a few best practices like prepping their work desk, assets like laptops, and other essentials. Introduce new hires virtually to every employee if the work model allows with a session of online teambuilding.
New hires can also be assigned mentors, and remember to check up on them via surveys and personal interactions.
A custom onboarding solution is a training tool that can make fresh hires effective contributors to your client's organization.
A strong onboarding program will ensure higher employee retention, meaning you won't have to fill the same position again.
7. Leverage the Right Recruitment Technology
Using a robust recruitment software is vital to speed up the process and increase hiring efficiency.
Recruitment software ensures positive candidate engagement, helps build a solid candidate database, and manages the hiring process right from sourcing to onboarding.
Here are a few things to consider when investing in recruitment software:
- Does it allow candidates to update their profiles?
- Can it visualize the candidate pipeline?
- Can it source directly from LinkedIn?
- Can it send and track emails?
- Can it prepare reports and dashboards?
- Can it automate specific tasks in the hiring process?
Looking for more tips and must-have features to consider when buying a recruitment software?
In Final Words
Redesigning your recruitment process can help battle such testing times for businesses.
Suppose you do it right and offer the best benefits to your employees, like flexible work hours and considerate work models. In that case, recruiters can navigate through labor shortages well enough.
By incorporating these strategies, attracting and hiring employees during labor shortages will becomeHR cakewalk.
Saurabh Wani is a digital marketer at ZoomShift, an employee scheduling tool. He has worked as an HR Recruiter for over three years before moving to marketing. HFRIENDSing and can be seen binge-watching F.R.I.E.N.D.S. when not working.