You just gotta love the connective power of the internet. I recently exchanged thoughts regarding employment branding with a recruiter in India, through the LinkedIn space. While that in and of itself is pretty amazing to anyone over 30, who grew up in a world without the internet and cellular phones, it's the content of our conversation that I thought was more interesting.
This recruiter had asked a question about how you find good talent to work for companies that don't measure up to the industry standards in regards to things like employee benefits, compensation, appreciation, etc.
This is a question and challenge that I face daily. Even in India, this recruiter is able to get the employer to understand the theory behind building an employment brand, and how that affects their ability to attract top talent, though when it comes to implementation.... well, let's just say the theory loses its importance and shine. I have spoken to many employers across New England about this very same issue, and have seen the very same wall put up when it comes time to actually create and develop the employment brand.
Ultimately, the idea that a company has to promote its strengths specific to the employment market in order to attract the right type of candidate is well accepted. Unfortunately, and somewhat surprising to me, most employers don't put in the time and energy necessary to create, develop, and communicate this employment brand. While I can preach about the value of attracting better candidates- increased productivity, increased customer relations, decreased turnover costs, decreased customer service complaints, decreased employee dissatisfaction, decreased cost of employee retention programs (if you attract the right people, you don't have to pay as much to keep them)-, I cannot FORCE employers to put branding up on the priority list, and assign the necessary resources to make it a reality.
To the recruiter from India's point, how do you expect to get good talent if you don't keep up with industry standards? Well, there actually is a way to do this. In fact, it's as easy as understanding your own employee's engagement to your company, understanding EXACTLY what kind of employee is best for your company, and communicating in the right spaces with the right message to reach the right people and motivate them to apply. If you don't pay as well as other companies, but you have a very good mentoring or training program, you're ideal candidate will be different from someone who has the best pay in the industry, with no real mentoring or training program.
What we see from many employers is that they don't take the time to really assess the profile of their best potential candidates. It's easy to go with the flow, and say you want someone with the best skill level, best education, and teamwork attitude. But is it true? Does your business need someone who works great in a group environment... or do you really need someone who can be left alone to get their job done reliably and without interruption? Do you need to attract people with the very best skill level... or would those people FEEL overqualified and uncomfortable in your milieu if they were hired- can you train those hard skills? Do you really want the person with the best education, or will that person disrupt the current environment in your workplace?
I always remind employers that the person they hire tomorrow will have to work with the people they employ today. That sounds elementary, but there is much more to consider in that statement than you might first think.
I'd love to hear your comments on how you identify the best candidates and attract them to hire, if you don't offer the best salary or best benefits, etc. Click HERE to add a comment. Thanks for sharing!
We have moved to Wordpress! Posted by Jason Links to this post The Recruiting Front Lines has evolved. At the beginning of the year, I changed jobs within my company, moving away from Outreach and Education, and into my new role as Director of Business Development. While I remain closely involved with our field activity, I am now more focused on strategic partnerships, social media, and the world of internet recruitment resources. As I have made this change, the focus of my blog content has also changed. Recently, I began to feel that many of the ideas I had for blog posts would not fit within the framework of The Recruiting Front Lines. This was a cause of some frustration, as I felt that I was either misrepresenting my content with the title of my blog, or that I was stifling my writing because I felt it didn't fit. To rectify this situation, I have created a new blog home, now on WordPress. I am still ironing out the wrinkles, but feel that it is far enough along that I can move all my past content, and begin posting all new content, at the new address. I would like to formally welcome everyone to come check out my new home at jasonblais.com. I can't wait to hear what you think! Best Regards, and Thank you for your time and attention over the past 18 months. Jason