Several recent conversations have made me stop to ponder how today’s employment landscape is throttling growth. Before COVID, the level and degree of heavy lifting to find, hire and keep talent was already daunting. And today, it’s a straight-up 'seller’s market' for bright men and women re-entering the job market or looking for a new position. If your firm is struggling to find, recruit, and keep talent (and nearly all we talk with are), plan for this to go on for quite a while. Staggering data to see; according to the March 2021 US Bureau of Labor Statistics: · US Job openings were at an all-time high of over 8 million, and · The US labor force had more than 2.1 million fewer people than a year earlier. This is an extremely challenging talent reality. And, landing new talent is especially brutal within the manufacturing sector, where the number of job openings is more than double compared to a year earlier. How bad is it? Beyond the too-frequent stories of candidates who were hired, accepted, and then pull out at the last minute to jump to another offer elsewhere, we’re now hearing stories of recruiters calling on new hires two weeks after they’ve started - to see if they’re again entertaining new offers. Ouch! Making matters worse, we’re hearing more stories of candidates who were hired, accepted, and then pull out at the last minute to jump to another offer elsewhere. And if that’s not bad enough, some recruiters are now calling on new hires two weeks after they’ve started - to see if they’re again entertaining new offers. Ouch!
Try this recruiting move: In this hyper-competitive hiring space, give your recruiting team a distinct edge. Tell your team to lead with your company’s clear vision of where it is going, its core values, and its solid growth strategy. What the job is/entails and pays is important, but your firm’s vision, values, and strategy for success matter more than ever before for today’s job seekers. The fact is that post-COVID, candidates can and are becoming more selective. Amy Cell, CEO of AmyCellTalent sums it up nicely, "candidates from execs to techs today value work with purpose and they want a good fit, especially if it means they have to commute." Great! So share why your company makes a difference, its goals for growth, the challenges ahead, and the problems you’re asking a recruit to help the team address. Amy adds, "Talk about why people are staying, and highlight the cool, innovative, good for the environment/community, and other things going on that promote the company, community, and individual success." Lesley Delgado, President of Strategic Recruiting Services, takes this a step further. She suggests conducting "stay interviews" to really understand what resonates with your employees today, and then make a point to integrate why people stay with your growth strategy story. She explains, "People choose today to work in firms because core values are present and being lived out (or not), they understand the overall growth strategy that how they fit in (or they don’t), and the overall environment and culture is attractive (or it’s not)." Dan Russell, Vice President at Trion Solutions, Inc. gets right to the point. "People are not chasing money. Jobs that a year ago paid $10-12/hr are now paying $20-22/hr, yet they still can’t find people." He adds, "People recognize that money is important and talent will demand a price tag, but an organization that has a clear and defined purpose, mission, and success strategy is very attractive to someone. More and more, we see people aligning themselves with companies that have similar views and outlooks on how they want to grow, impact their community, and create culture. They are attracted to, align with, and flock to being part of something as opposed to just having a job." Communicating your strategy to potential recruits – and your current team – is especially crucial during times like these when major uncertainties continue. As Dan points out, "People want to know the plan and how they fit in. If you don’t tell them, they’ll make their own assumptions. If they assume the worse, they’ll worry. If they assume the best, they risk feeling blindsided." So tell them. Tell them with clarity what your firm’s strategy is – and their – success. Tell them you’re making a strategic hire. Tell them how they can contribute and make a real difference. Tell them for reasons -- above and beyond the job posting -- that they matter. And of course, truly mean it. Happy recruiting! Loch June 2021 Newsletter - Strategy Matters by Loch McCabe