Hiring sucks. From attracting to retaining, it’s a difficult process for you and your candidates.
Why? Everyone wants to win, and despite the overused phrase, there are very few actual “win-win” situations in business.
You want to get the best people to make an impact as quickly as possible. The best people want to get paid lots of money, love their job and never get stressed.
Ideal, but not easy.
Job vacancies remain high. Yet, employers struggle to hire, and job candidates can’t find their fit. Still, hiring and retention remain a top goal this year for employers, according to research from The Boston Consulting Group and Harvard Business School.
If hiring sucks, reputation is at risk
What’s more, if you don’t orchestrate an impressive hiring process, candidates might make you look even worse to other potential candidates. Nearly 20% said they’d take negative action against a company — perhaps social media slamming — if they don’t hear back from you, a Conference Board study found.
“It can lead to a reduction in the pool of future applicants,” said Rebecca Ray, Executive Vice President, Human Capital at The Conference Board. “By treating all candidates fairly and professionally, hiring managers can help shape the way they think about the company, even if they were not a good fit for the role.”
That’s a start, for sure. Now, here are seven ways to make sure your hiring process doesn’t suck.
1. Ditch the degrees
More than 70% of job candidates apply for jobs they’re interested in. Just about 55% apply for jobs they’re qualified for.
“This means that those who do not have the formal education required by many companies may not apply for a position, even if they gained the necessary skills and experience through other means,” says said Robin Erickson, Vice President, Human Capital at The Conference Board. “To increase the pool of qualified candidates and find the best fit for a role … remove degree requirements from job descriptions when they are not necessary.”
The Harvard researchers suggest looking for candidates with about 75% of the skills, knowing they’ll be able to pick up the other skills.
2. Broaden the scope
Invite candidates to apply for one or many roles — even those you aren’t necessarily hiring for. Then consider candidates for multiple roles when they have a lot of overlapping skills.
When you broaden the scope, candidates and you will look at more, maybe better, possibilities.
3. Condense the job
Rather than hire for full-time, long-term positions, offer more short-term paid projects, apprenticeships and internships.
This can help you reach a new candidate pool — people who aren’t immediately interested in long-term work. Then potential employees and you can figure out if it’s a good fit before committing to a full-time hire.
4. Open up an alumni network
Call on former employees to speed up the hiring and onboarding process. Stay in touch with and reach out to alumni with valuable institutional knowledge to come back.
Or, if they aren’t interested in a return, ask them to recommend other people or hiring channels to recruit candidates.
5. Broaden your scope
Find new candidates in hidden populations.
- Retirees: Many retirees want to unretire. Post jobs at senior community and living centers and churches. Make it easier for them to apply, eliminating some of the online assessments and applications.
- Previously incarcerated workers. Many organizations make second-chance hiring easier to facilitate nowadays.
- Neurodiverse. The neurodiverse population in increasingly interested in work and gaining skills to contribute significantly to employers.
6. Get more social
Keep a closer eye on social media platforms to find new talent. You want to watch out for layoff lists and posts about job upheavals.
Sure, that’s not pleasant news and may seem predatory, but it’s a quick way to find candidates who are likely eager and open to the hiring process.
7. Partner in your community
Get involved with educational and local institutions, such as community colleges, job centers and vocational schools.
Work with them to create or tailor curriculum, experiences and opportunities to build a talent pipeline that leads to your workplace. This way, you can streamline some of the process as you get familiar with candidates as they come through your programs. Same goes for them: They see and experience what it might be like working for you.