There are a number of reasons why your business is not attracting the best candidates. I want to focus on these four key mistakes which I see companies make on a daily basis...
Part of the service at Few&Far is advising you on all of the following points and make sure we secure the best talent for you. Right, that’s my plug for Few&Far done…on to the details.
I don't mean this in terms of revenue, innovation, or people... I'm sure your company is fantastic. I mean they are better at attracting candidates. At the moment, the market is extremely buoyant and there is a huge amount of competition for talent, therefore it's even more difficult for your opportunity to stand out.
The best people want to work with great teams, on interesting, new products in a fun and fast paced environment.
That may be exactly what you have, but are you portraying it effectively? I would recommend looking at a few similar jobs online for different companies and see how their job descriptions read.
Are they just outlining what they want from a candidate or are they talking about the opportunity, the growth, the team and the culture? Now look at your job descriptions.
How do they compare? Also look at the same companies’ social media, look at their "Careers" page and compare that to yours too. Who would you want to work for? If you were a candidate, who would you choose?
Whether you’re a start-up with a minimal marketing budget or a larger business struggling to change your image, think about your brand perception & visibility as it’s hugely important when hiring.
You need your business and opportunity to reach the ears of your potential candidates so how do you do this? The first way I would suggest is using a specialist recruitment agency (obviously I would say that!) to tap in to a network of headhunted candidates who are not actively looking and have already been screened.
Recruiters can sell your business or new proposition effectively and understands what the specific candidates’ needs are. This targeted approach should provide you with a range of strong candidates very quickly and saves you a lot of time. However, I'm aware that some of you can't use agencies, so here are some alternatives:
Job adverts on specialist websites
(like Mindtheproduct.com for Product people) which are a lot cheaper than agencies but require time from you to filter through the potentially hundreds of applicants to find the one or two (if you're lucky) gems.
Sponsoring an event within the community
Have a look at meetup.com for the skill set that you are looking to grow and get in touch with the groups. They love to hear from companies that will buy them beers and pay for the venue and in return they will give you a 5 minute slot to talk about what your company is doing and what you're looking for, maybe put your logo and opportunities on their group too! It's a great way to get your opportunity in front of 100-500 relevant people who are not actively looking and help change people’s assumptions about your company (If needed).
Using social media effectively
This is another great way to draw attention to your business. Make sure you use your team by getting them to promote vacancies via LinkedIn.
Getting an internal referral
is a great way to find strong people and it should give you some peace of mind if a member of your team knows them well. Maybe think about an incentive for members of staff who refer candidates that you hire.
Everyone wants people to come in to their business, take a pay cut because they love it so much and be there for at least three years.
The truth is, the digital space as a whole has been growing incredibly quickly and there are not enough strong candidates out there. This has ultimately driven up salaries.
The majority of the time, my clients don't know what the average salary and package is for the position they're looking to hire. This is an important point because if you are paying 10% or more below the market average, most candidates won't bother applying or attending interviews.
It's important to know what you are competing against. Speak to a specialist recruiter, run through the role with them and they should be able to give you an indication of what the average market rate is for free (well we do anyway!).
Think about the last time you interviewed a candidate. Did you know the candidates motivation?
I'm not talking about the generic "I want to work with a great brand". I'm talking "I want to work closer to home and have some flexibility because my wife is pregnant and I don't want to be too far away when we have a young child".
Understanding the candidates’ needs is absolutely key to making sure that you are selling your role in the right way to the right candidate and giving yourself the best chance of securing the top talent.
When we send across a shortlist and after every interview, we'll explain the motivations and concerns of each candidate to you. This allows you to highlight the information that the candidate needs to know and you can also address any concerns. This is all part of the service.
Although this is not an exhaustive list, this should hopefully give you an insight into how I believe you should go about securing the best talent.
If you still feel as though you could use some more tips on how best to sell your proposition, feel free to give us a call and we'll be happy to help you with it.
- Nick Charalambous, Co-Founder at Few&Far.