By Mary Runkel, Arvada Chamber Director of Member Experience
You have open positions. People are looking for jobs. So where’s the disconnect? We analyzed data in our first of this series, “The Perfect Storm Impacting Our Talent Pipeline.” Now we dive into tips for hands-on recruitment as businesses face new challenges to garner new employees.
What we do know is that it’s a job-seekers market. Therefore, the tactics you used previously might not work today. Focusing on the tactics below may increase your odds of finding qualified candidates and retaining excellent employees.
1. Re-Write your Job Description
- Ensure you are hiring for skills over experience. More and more businesses are moving beyond credentials to define the skills needed for a new hire. According to a 2022 Burning Glass Institute study, some 46% of middle-skill and 31% of high-skill occupations reduced degree requirements between 2017 and 2019. When employers drop degrees, they become more specific about skills in job postings, detailing the soft skills that may have been assumed to come with a college education, such as writing, communication, and being detail-oriented. This also opens their doors to the two-thirds of Americans without a college education, many of whom may have the skills qualification needed for your business. For a starting point on skills-based job descriptions, try a generator like the one at Skillful.com.
- Consider adding an “80%” disclaimer. Many people, often women or people from disadvantaged backgrounds, choose not to apply to jobs without having all of the listed qualifications. Consider adding language that includes a sentiment that not all listed skills, credentials, or experience is required. For example: “Though we’d like all candidates to possess certain skills, we acknowledge that people have different work histories and backgrounds with transferrable skills. Please feel encouraged to apply if you have 80% or more of the above qualifications. We’d love to meet you!”
- Review non-negotiables vs. “nice-to-haves.” When considering the requirements you wish future employees to posess, some may be necessary (credentials for technical positions) while others are preferred. If time, energy, and funding allows, consider adding “training available” in certain areas should a hire lack those skills. This can not only expand your amount of applications, but if done right, it could also contribute to the person’s loyalty to your company.
2. Consider Remote Options for new and Seasoned Employees
If you are able, consider remote work options, even for one or two days per week. COVID-19 has shifted the workplace and studies show people are as efficient or more efficient at home and without office distractions. Plus, according to a 2022 Pew Research study, 60% of workers with jobs that can be done from home say, if they have the choice, they’d now like to work from home all or most of the time.
3. Market the Open Position Widely
If you’re not finding recruitment success through your typical channels, you may be fishing in the same pond (or the wrong pond) for too long. Consider the below locations to share your open position.
- Arvada Area Job Board: A free resource open to all businesses and non-profits in the area.
- Other Local Job Boards: Connecting Colorado, Andrew Hudson’s job list (cost prohibitive), and the Denver Chamber of Commerce (must be a member to post).
- Job Boards for Diverse Hires: The American Association of University Women compiled this list of eight job boards for diverse professionals.
Also reconsider how you spend your recruitment money. Instead of pouring more money into ads and placement for recruitment, consider shifting funds to signing bonuses or employee referral programs.
4. Examine if Work-Based Learning is an Option
Apprenticeships and other work-based learning opportunities might be solid options for amplifying your entry-level pipeline. Then you’ll be able to upskill and promote internal hires to management or upper-level roles. Learn more by reading the Arvada Chamber’s Work-Based Learning Toolkit.
5. Remember Great Company Culture is More Important Than Ever
In a new report from Talentor, creating an environment in which employees feel holistically comfortable has become an important part of the employer branding strategy. In a recent study, 35,000 employees from 34 countries were asked what requirements they place on their employers. The result: 56 percent of employees between the ages of 18 and 24 would quit their job if it made them unhappy. Ensure that you are measuring employee satisfaction through surveying and marketing the best parts of working for your business. If you are hiring, make sure that culture, including spotlights of employees, perks, and outings, are showcased on your website and social media.