Discover 8 ways to overcome hiring challenges in the post-pandemic, new world of work.
The COVID-19 pandemic caused a profound disruption to the way we work. As employers were forced to adopt a remote work model, employees had time at home to think and evaluate their priorities. This meant either staying with their current role, or switching companies or industries altogether. What’s been most surprising is that now, over 2 years since the beginning of COVID, workers aren’t jumping at the chance to return to the office — or in some cases, to traditional work at all.
Nearly 4.5 million people resigned from their jobs in February of this year. According to Pew Research, the majority of workers who quit a job in 2021 say low pay (63%), no opportunities for advancement (63%), and feeling disrespected at work (57%) were reasons why they quit their jobs. Others say child care issues and lack of flexibility as their reasons for leaving. How can hiring managers, desperately in need of talent, surmount worker resistance and hiring challenges in a post-pandemic world? Here are 8 tactics to attract workers in a tight labor market.
Post-pandemic hiring tactics
Check out 8 ways to optimize your hiring process as we navigate the new world of work.
Create excellent job listings and use a wide range of channels
A recruiter’s secret weapon for hiring in 2022? A great job listing. Job listings are an employer’s first impression, and it’s critical to make a good one that stands out in a sea of competitors. How competitive is hiring these days? Take a look at the professional and business services industry, which had 2,065,000 new job listings as of April 2022.
Make your job listing pop by ensuring that job descriptions are clear without jargon or ambiguity. “Sales rockstar” isn’t descriptive the way “Regional sales manager” is. Job details should be just as concise and transparent. List everything a candidate needs to know, like daily tasks, management structure, starting pay, benefits, extra perks, and more. Make sure your company values and mission shine through, so the applicant knows if they are a good fit.
List everything a candidate needs to know, like daily tasks, management structure, starting pay, benefits, extra perks, and more. Make sure your company values and mission shine through, so the applicant knows if they are a good fit.
Secondly, don’t limit job postings to just a few sites. Expand outreach to new targets and channels. Even workers who aren’t actively searching may be open to taking on roles with higher compensation, more flexibility, improved mobility, and more. Actively look for and message potential candidates on LinkedIn. Additionally, post your listing on job sites such as:
Google is another great way to get the word out about your job. Use Google’s Job Search tool to get your job posting in front of candidates before they click through to a website or job board.
Customize the hiring process
A surefire way to get the attention of top talent? Personalize the entire candidate process. Determine what types of workers you need (i.e., new college grads, managers, or assistants) and customize the job ad, landing pages, forms, emails, and other communications to speak to that segment directly.
Additionally, infuse human contact into every touchpoint of the hiring journey. Ditch automated emails, at least once you’ve whittled the candidates down to a manageable size, to make interactions feel personal and not robotic. Address each candidate by their first name in all written communications. Personalized experiences increase the likelihood of candidates responding and can be instrumental in convincing them to choose your company over its competitors.
Consider “imperfect” candidates
Determine which skills, software, and processes are trainable and which ones aren’t. The job role likely has many requirements that can be taught “on the job.”
While it’s a recruiter’s dream to have a long list of candidates with impeccable job experience and skills that tick every box, it’s an unlikely scenario in the post-pandemic world or any world for that matter. Consider hiring candidates that don’t perfectly match the mix of skills and knowledge set forth on your job listing.
Determine which skills, software, and processes are trainable and which ones aren’t. The job role likely has many requirements that can be taught “on the job.” Effective managers and leaders can coach workers to reach the levels of expertise the job requires so that even “imperfect” candidates become ideal employees.
Ramp up hiring speed
Anyone that’s interviewed for a job pre-pandemic knows that the hiring process was long. In fact, it wasn’t unusual for hiring to take several months. In many cases, there were phone interviews, second phone interviews, in-person interviews, panel interviews, and final interviews before a company would extend an offer.
Although hiring the right person takes time, time isn’t on the employer’s side anymore. There is just too much at stake. As the demand for highly qualified candidates increases, expediting the time to hire becomes even more critical. Increase your hiring speeds by selecting candidates to interview quickly, reducing the number of hiring steps, and having tasks, like background checks, ordered ahead of schedule. Strive for
Make a hiring video
Company culture can be challenging to explain in a few words on a job posting. While this tactic may be more involved than others, it can make your company shine. Company culture videos are a great way to illustrate why your company is worth interviewing with. Try filming employees in various roles doing their daily tasks, asking them questions about the company, and keeping things as candid as possible. You can even add some humor to the videos, where appropriate.
Avoid scripting your videos as an overly produced clip may turn off applicants. Ultimately, a great hiring video showcases your company, your values, the types of workers, and their reasons for working there. You can post a hiring video on your website, on your social accounts, and you may even be able to embed it directly into job postings on some websites.
What’s your biggest 2022 HR challenge that you’d like to resolve
Answer to see the results
Social media is the perfect way to attract passive candidates on the platforms they spend the most time on. Many companies embrace social media to show off company personality and culture with employee highlights, team outings, and celebrations across the board. Social media can be a unique hiring tool, so post frequently and encourage applicants to direct message you with questions.
Some types of content to post include:
- Photos from events
- Employee testimonials
- Company culture videos
- A “day in the life” video series for each department
- A volunteer-work showcase
- Employee guest blog posts
Collaborate with employees and encourage them to make their own content as well.
Avoid an applicant wasting your time or you wasting theirs with an effective frequently asked questions (FAQ) section on your application/careers page. Be open and honest about your health insurance, 401(k), and paid time off policies. Thoroughly explain your hiring process, including how many interviews are typical and what onboarding looks like. Dive into working hours, remote working rules, or the hybrid work schedule. Most importantly, detail your starting salary for each position, so candidates know if the pay is within their required range.
Incentivize current employees
Ensure that any new job postings are thoroughly advertised internally first, and encourage your workers to share the posting with others.
The last post-pandemic hiring technique is to reach out to current employees. Ensure that any new job postings are thoroughly advertised internally first, and encourage your workers to share the posting with others. Incentivize your team to reach into their networks with an employee referral program. Most referral programs offer payouts to anyone who refers a hired candidate. This type of program can be a powerful way to snatch up top talent and to increase the chances of a new hire aligning with company culture.
Introduce your incentive program to all employees via email. Clearly explain the program’s parameters, the requirements for receiving the incentive, and current job openings. Include shareable links to each open job, so it’s easy for staff to send to potential matches.
Main areas to remember
COVID-19 sent a shockwave through businesses worldwide and jostled employees out of their normal routines, causing them to look deeply at why they work where they work. The “Great Resignation” brought a max exodus that the labor market hasn’t seen in decades, partly due to worker needs for pay, benefits, and treatment not being met. Even with a plethora of open job listings plaguing industries across the nation, there are several tactics that companies can use to lure in suitable candidates.
Employers should focus their efforts on creating amazing job listings and posting them to various channels. Job listings should be clear, concise, and free of jargon. Recruiters should post jobs on as many sites as possible to reach a vast pool of potential applicants.
Businesses should also customize the recruiting process by job type, consider “imperfect” candidates, and ramp up their hiring speeds. Recruiters can customize the recruitment process by segmenting job types and personalizing content. Additionally, openness to employees that may need additional training is critical to fill the talent gap. Time to hire speed optimization may also help companies secure talent.
Finally, it’s beneficial to have a social media presence that highlights a company’s culture, application pages with an effective job FAQ section, and incentives for current employee referrals. Social media can be the perfect way to show off company culture and engage passive job candidates. Website FAQ sections can answer questions and help an employee determine fit before they apply. Employee referral programs help engage employees in the hiring process while increasing your talent pool.