Employers, it's time to look in the mirror

You will hear lots about the candidate driven market but what does this mean?

It means that candidates are holding most of the power in the job market and they have plenty of choice. Now add to this that people have been working in very different way over the last year, how you recruit, entice and retain them must also be different.

I ran a poll on LinkedIn. The results were interesting to say the least! Salary was the least important thing to job seekers and ability to work from home was top priority!

What would be the most important thing if you were changing jobs?

Ability to work from home 38%

 Salary 14%

 Flexible hours 28%

 Progression opportunities 20%

As a recruitment agency we are being asked daily, “do they allow work from home?” Many jobs can’t be done from home but if they can, why can’t this be offered? This is new, it’s scary and it involves trust and good communication but “if you always do what you always did, you’ll always get what you always got”. Employers have to change to attract top talent in a candidate driven market. Don’t be left behind.

If a candidate has two comparable offers and one offers flexibility then they will get the acceptance. All because you need to physically “see” people at their desk 9-5pm. This may mean you have to train line managers, influence the board or invest in remote technology.

If you are recruiting and aren’t getting the right level of applicants don’t simply jump to increase salary. Are you offering or highlighting your understanding of the modern workplace? Maybe you can offer flexibility around core hours to allow a parent to drop their child to school or someone to attend a sport event late afternoon. It’s about the needs of the business of course, but also the needs and lives of your people.

Whilst we are seeing counter offers and some flaky job seekers, in the main this is a serious job market and job seekers are more focussed than ever on what they are looking for from their next employer.

Benefits, flexibility and work life balance win over salary. Employers need to look at their offering and up date thinking and culture.

There is also the old school thinking of “if they can’t attend a 10.30am interview then I don’t want to see them”. They are working! Everyone’s time is important so show respect for the candidate’s time. Rigid interview times is an indication of an employer that doesn’t value the applicant. Of course, interviews are challenging to arrange but those that will run an accommodating interview time will start to create that positive image of the business.

And finally, interviews are two ways. Sell a realistic dream. If you have people within your business that have worked their way up, talk about it! If you are impressed by someone’s experience, tell them. Don’t be so formal that you terrify your job seeker. If you want to see a real person, be your authentic self at interview. People accept jobs from people they like!!!

So, yes, the candidates have the upper hand right now. But, with some small tweaks and some thought you can be the better offer without simply flashing the cash and this will all reflect in your bottom line!.

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