Guest contributor Alistair Brown of BrightHR gives advice on recruiting in the digital age
Industry-Leading Recruitment Tactics For Your Business
Recruitment has changed—the digital revolution has seen to that. Awkward old tactics are out of the window and new industry trends have emerged.
For the early adopters, the rewards are a streamlined hiring strategy, talented new staff members, plus saved time and money. Want to take advantage? Here’s how you can go about shaking up your approach to recruitment.
Take control of your brand’s image
In what’s considered a war for talent, you can start by ensuring you look the part. Start with your online presence—make sure your website is great looking and functioning well. If you haven’t left 2008 web design behind, potential employees may get concerned if you’ve not taken the time to upgrade (or, worse, you’re too hard up to do so).
Next up? Social media. Those accounts of yours should have unique web design, a clear and descriptive business profile, and regular updates. If a candidate lands on your Twitter account and you’ve not posted anything since 2015, it doesn’t send out a positive signal.
But there are other steps you can take to stepping your image up. How? Well, you can…
Upgrade your office
Remember, Millennials and Generation Z will be your driving workforce in a decade, so you want to start attracting top talent from these digitally minded sorts as soon as possible.
Taking the lead from point #1, you can give your office space a bit of a new look. These 14 office upgrade ideas are a good starting point.
Ultimately, it’s about being more appealing and keeping your staff members’ mental well-being at a premium. Think of interesting colours, plants, natural light, a few fun items like a video games console, and it can help a great deal (particularly for creatives—for any marketing department, it’s a must).
This is an inspired way to improve candidate experience during the interview process. Think of interactive videos, virtual reality, a coding challenge etc. These are video game type experiences that will be particularly engaging for younger generations—for you, they can be a much more focussed recruitment technique.
They work at their best if they’re customised for your business. Increasingly, some big names have used virtual reality games—that’s one example we can expect to hear much more of. 10 years ago, it was virtually (sorry) unheard of.
But the fact remains businesses now have to put on a more entertaining front for a new generation of employees. Drab environments of grey with a soul destroying focus on 9-5 work is falling by the wayside.
A progressive approach can start with your hiring strategy. You want to gain the best talent, so put the effort in with a novel approach to test their skills. Like to see some examples? Check out this post from GradLeaders.
Want to try out potential candidates before they start? Give them a trial run in your office.
Job auditions haven’t taken over hiring strategies, but if you have two top candidates you want to see in your workplace, then they can be a useful approach. This will allow you to see how they’re going to be on a day-to-day basis (at least in theory).
The downside? Nerves, or even a bombastic opening day, doesn’t translate into how they’ll perform on a long-term basis. Sometimes you just have to accept the uncertainty involved in recruiting.
Look for enthusiasm
Does the candidate with 10 years’ experience seem ideal, except his or her’s eyes glazed over 10 minutes into the interview?
Enthusiasm as a commodity is priceless, which is why less experienced candidates can be worth focussing on—they may lack outright expertise, but they genuinely want to be with your business.
It’s worth considering, as on-the-job training is much more commonplace these days.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has reached an incredible point. Chatbots are so proficient they can understand a person’s messages and will respond accordingly.
The benefits? The major one is you get automated software that can screen candidates and funnel the best through to the next stage of your process. It’s that pre-qualification ability that can save your business a huge amount of time and money.
You can even create a bespoke chatbot—your web dev team can work on it. Tempted? Find out more from LinkedIn.
Take a creative approach to social media
LinkedIn is an obvious one for posting vacancies, but with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube available you can reach a much wider audience.
Get creative with your posts—include eye-catching, bespoke images on them to draw attention to them. Add targeted hashtags, too, for anyone on the lookout.
Keep Glassdoor in mind
Haven’t heard of this website? Your business may well be on there and former employees could well have left a review about your business.
A lot of people like giving reviews anyway, but if it’s a chance to unload about an unhappy working experience, they most certainly will do so.
Candidates could get put off by negative reviews, so be sure to respond politely to your reviews to provide your side of the story.
Learn to recognise when you only need a freelancer, rather than a full-time employee. It’s still common for businesses to draft in a new starter with an impressive sounding job title, but not really have anything for them to do.
The good news? There’s a community of talented freelancers out there for you to reach out to. Freelancer springs to mind, but the beauty of the modern business world if you don’t have to limit yourself to the UK. There are creatives the world over who can work for you at the drop of the hat.
The benefits of a call
Finally, remember that you can easily interview candidates with a screening call.
It’s astonishing some businesses still insist on the ancient practice of dragging a candidate down to their office for an hour long interview. All just after a brief scan of their CV. It can be a colossal waste of time for all concerned.
With the advent of smartphones, plus apps like Skype and FaceTime, it’s easy to ring someone for a 20 minute chat.
Naturally, this is an essential method for any candidates you’re considering from abroad. But if you have someone 50 miles away, do them the courtesy of ringing for an opening interview. If it works out, then they can come down to your office for the second phase.
Alistair Brown is the chief technical officer of BrightHR in Manchester city centre. He’s responsible for managing creative projects that streamline human resources for clients. The HR consultant provides human resources software, and much more, to clients to streamline their day-to-day activities.