Labour shortages in key sectors has been a hot media topic recently. With key vacancies in sectors, such as hospitality, transport and manufacturing rising, here are some tips on how to avoid a “Dry January” within your own business. This post will outline how an effective recruitment strategy may help increase engagement and prevent staff shortages for a healthy workforce.
What are your workforce looking for?
When advertising for new positions, it is important to consider what employees find attractive about jobs in order to market your organisation to them.
The Good Work Index (CIPD, 2021) suggests the following as a benchmark for what can be considered a ‘good job’, and therefore the steps that may take your recruitment strategy to the next level:
1. Pay – are you offering a competitive salary for your staff?
Consider browsing recruitment pages (such as LinkedIn or Indeed) and taking a benchmark salary for the roles you are offering to ensure the pay you are offering is competitive to stand out from the crowd.
2. Job security – does the job you’re offering provide long-term security?
Workers that don’t have to worry about the security of their job may be free to do their best work, with the potential of improving your bottom line. Moreover, considering the costs of replacing and training staff on temporary contracts, it may be useful to offer permanent positions within your organisation where possible, rather than zero-hours or temporary roles.
3. Learning opportunities – does your business promote continuous learning through on-the-job training or external training courses?
Organisations that have a strong learning culture may have 30-50% higher engagement and retention rates (according to Bersin & Associates). With fewer than half of employees feeling that they have progressed within their career in the last five years (RSA/Populus), it may be time for your organisation to foster a learning culture to get the most from your team and the top talent through your door.
4. Skill use – do you use your team’s skills to their full potential?
You wouldn’t keep your best striker on the Subs bench, so don’t keep the talents of your workers shied away! If you’re interviewing a candidate with unique skills, why not consider how you can fit those within the roles you currently have on offer? Could any of your roles be revised to bring the most out of your team members?
5. Task variety – does your workplace allow for a diverse range of tasks to be allocated to each team member?
A workload that is repetitive or mundane may negatively impact job satisfaction or the purpose that employees are able to find within their work. With this in mind, it may be important to keep things interesting and increase the variety of tasks within a role. This may help your organisation stand out to prospective candidates in the recruitment process and result in more applications as a result.
6. Task discretion – are workers able to manage their own workload where possible?
Employees may value the ability to manage their own workload. While this may not be practical in roles where there are specific tasks to complete through the day, there may be more creative ways to get on board. For example, a chef working in a restaurant may not be able to manage their day-to-day workload when it is dependant on customers. However, they are able to manage any extra responsibilities leaders are able to delegate to them – such as creating a system to make the kitchen more organised, for example. Here, it may be important to think outside of the box depending on the nature of the roles within your business and how leaders can energise employees.
7. Job demands – do the demands of the job fit the skills of your team?
It may be wise to assess the demands of the roles you are advertising. A role that is too demanding may deter applicants, while a role that is too easy may prevent applications from those seeking a challenge. Pitching it just right may ensure that you hire the right amount of team for the work on offer, allowing your business to run sustainably.
8. Control over start and finishing times – are workers able to work flexibly?
In a world post-Covid, it may be the desire of more workers to be able to control their working hours as a result of additional factors, such as childcare and working from home. Advertising flexible working hours and the ability to work from home may open the talent pool to those in different locations to where your business is based, allowing you more choice in your recruitment.
9. Opportunities for participation – are employees able to provide feedback to the leadership team and participate in staff meetings?
Finally, one of the best ways to engage employees is by involving them within the decision-making process. This may help employees to feel valued while adding creativity into your organisation with new suggestions from those closer to the ground and who may be more positioned to be able to provide valuable insight into company trends. For example, waitresses who hear customers comment on the pricing of menu items may be best positioned to explain why footfall in a restaurant may have declined over the last month. Highlighting opportunities for participation on your job advertisements may help foster a candidate’s investment into the company as a whole from the get-go.
Here are nine ways in which an organisation can help bolster their recruitment strategies to encourage more applicants and engage existing team members to prevent turnover and staff shortages. It may be important to think beyond a typical job description to consider what makes a job a ‘Good Job’, and how to implement these factors to effectively market your business to prospective candidates.