The ability to attract top talent takes more than just a posting on a job board, a newspaper ad, or a sign in a storefront window. Many small businesses must compete with larger companies for talented recruits without the luxury of internal recruiters or head hunters to conduct searches and interview candidates.
However, there are some cost-effective ways for small-business owners to compete. For example, here are some areas to focus on:
Here are some other areas to focus on to help your small business be a recruiting contender.
You may not have a considerable software budget, but there are affordable recruiting software options that are designed for small businesses. The appropriate technology can help you vet candidates, become better organized and expedite the hiring process, so you don’t lose good candidates by being too slow. Moving away from relying on an email inbox or Excel spreadsheet helps you stay current and agile in your hiring practices.
Recruiting software can help level the playing field and allow your business to compete with larger companies.
Since you’re not a large conglomerate, you should have greater flexibility in hiring top talent. For example, your pitch to candidates should emphasize the availability of flexible hours, direct access to management, remote work, opportunities for advancement, continuous learning opportunities, community involvement, and even the flexibility of paid time off. These elements help you show an openness to being flexible and accommodating.
Offering remote work also highlights your business’ embrace of innovation. The advantages to both employees and employers from remote work are endless.
Another option that many small businesses overlook is altering their hiring strategies. You can visit colleges in your area to get to know the guidance counselors and ask them to pass along your information to promising young graduates. Social media can also be beneficial; it’s a great tool to leverage employment options that benefit you and the community.
Liz Frazier writes at Forbes, “22% of recruiters surveyed have already invested in new recruitment advertising techniques like Snapchat and text message-based recruiting. Regarding the actual job postings, 65% of college seniors agree that most of the search results from job boards they’ve used are irrelevant or not a good fit for them.”
One of the most significant issues with small businesses is failing to plan for long-term opportunities for their employees. As members of Generation Z move into the workforce, the employment market must shift with the times.
Another critical factor to remember: members of Gen Z are the first true “digital natives” in society. They grew up with all the latest innovations, including smartphones, the internet, social media, and mobile real-time connections, so they expect to have a digital relationship with any potential employer.
Look beyond the potential of the people you interview. In addition to having the right skill sets, think about how they will complement your business. Broaden your thinking to include people who are a “culture-add” and a culture fit.
Being a culture-add means bringing something different to the position, whether it’s a new design, a new experience, a new vision, a new approach, an innovative strategy, or just a fresh perspective. An employee who is a culture-add accentuates what already exists in your workplace culture and brings a different dimension that is sorely needed.
As a small business owner, the competition is fierce when hiring top talent, but with some diligence, there’s no reason you can’t level the playing field and compete with larger companies.
Previously posted at TalentCulture.com on August 1, 2019