Despite a disruptive year with COVID-19, worker layoffs and more, many companies find themselves facing similar hiring challenges in 2021 that they were facing before COVID-19. There’s plenty of opportunity to grow, if only you could find enough good workers.
After many layoffs in Spring 2020, many workers are back to work. Others are less motivated to jump back into full-time jobs with lucrative unemployment benefits. “How can you compete with someone getting paid well to NOT work?!?”
The key to being successful in a competitive hiring environment is to “put on your marketing hat.” The same mindset you use to attract great customers can help you attract great workers in a world where hiring is more competitive than ever.
To be successful, we must change our mindset. The approach you see on this billboard no longer works:
Did you see a problem?
It’s two words… “NOW HIRING.”
If you are using those words to promote your jobs, you are probably disappointed with the results the past few years. “Now Hiring” just doesn’t work like it used to. Here’s why:
You need to focus on the people you’re trying to reach, NOT the job you’re trying to fill. Your hiring process is about THEM, it’s NOT about you.
In the past two years since publishing this article, Spire worked with more than 100 local employers in Northern Ohio and helped them improve their hiring and retention strategies through campaigns and hands-on workshops.
One important starting point was helping those employers eliminate the “Now Hiring” mindset.
If you really think about the words, “now hiring” has a self-centered focus to it. Like,
“I know you all have been waiting for months, perhaps even years, for the privilege of working for our company, so let me declare that we are NOW HIRING.”
[cue the applause]
And when you say those words, suddenly eager, well-qualified workers line up with their resumes just hoping for their shot to work for you.
This might have been more effective in 2009, when a lot of people were out of work and they just wanted a chance to work somewhere. But not today. People have jobs, and they need a good reason to make a change.
So how do you do this?
You need to make your hiring process about the ideal worker, NOT about the job.
I suggest starting with your job posting or job description. Grab a copy of a recent job posting from your company. Ask yourself three questions:
Personally, I’d often rather hire the right person instead of the right qualifications. I want someone who will love their work and do it well after they get some initial training more than someone who has the required number of years but may not enjoy what they do.
Sometimes the highest-potential job prospects have the most self-doubt when applying for jobs. Don’t scare away good people. Help assure them that you will equip them to be successful.
To help you nail this, download our Job Description Planner. It’s a simple fill-in-the-blanks worksheet that will help you create a highly engaging job posting that is focused on the needs of your ideal worker. We include an example that will give you fresh ideas to help you improve your job postings.
With your job posting focused on the needs of your ideal worker, now it’s time to create an ad to match. You’ll want to promote your job opening on social media. You may also want to post it on job boards, help wanted ads, maybe even local billboards.
But in all of your promotion, eliminate the “Now Hiring” mindset. Instead, turn your focus to the worker and why they will love working for your company.
In Part Two of this article, we will go deeper about what motivates those ideal workers to apply for your job openings and what demotivates them in their current job. We’ll share another free resource you can use to not only reach workers more effectively, but also better retain the great people you already have on your team.