HR 3 January 2018

Five things you shouldn’t do if you want to attract top talent in 2018

New year is the perfect time to address your recruitment strategy
New year is the perfect time to address your recruitment strategy

How will your small company attract top talent in 2018? Here, co-founder of job listings site Adzuna, Andrew Hunter, offers five helpful recruitment tips.

As we begin the new year, there’s sure to be an influx of potential applicants looking to start afresh with their career. With this in mind, it might be time for your company to scrub up on how it can attract top talent.

With the growing number of millennials joining the workplace, combined with the growth of more small businesses and startups, it has never been more important to be at the forefront of your industry to attract top talent.

What better time to start than at the beginning of a new year, to make sure you are going over and above to ensure you are getting those top candidates this 2018.

Read more: January job exodus set to hit technology, travel and leisure businesses

As a business owner, it’s important that your company grows alongside your future employees, and is willing to meet their expectations. Why should you expect top candidates to join your team if your company isn’t standing out as the most elite in your industry?

A recent global study revealed that Switzerland is leading the way, both in terms of attracting and retaining top talent. Meanwhile, the UK comes in at a surprisingly low twenty-first. It’s likely that the career opportunities, job stability and strong focus on work-life balance in Switzerland is what encourages candidates to stay.

In the 2018, UK firms should be looking at the techniques used successfully in places like Switzerland, and be learning from them. Here are five things you should never do to attract top talent to your business.

(1) Keep your employees in the dark

The majority of job interviews don’t give a deep insight into what working at the company will be like, and a lack of transparency can be off-putting to job candidates.

If an applicant leaves a job interview feeling like they’ve been kept in the dark on purpose, or not received an accurate portrayal of what the job role will be like, they’re unlikely to be enthusiastic about working for you.

This doesn’t mean you have to give every detail about your company away at interviews, but make sure that your company culture, expectations and an accurate outline of what the job will entail, are fully understood by the candidate.

(2) Overlook the importance of company values and ethics

As a brand, all employees represent you. If your company appears to have poor ethics, or has perhaps received backlash for offensive behaviour in the past, candidates are unlikely to want to be associated with you.

There is no better time to evaluate and refresh the values and ethics of your company than at the start of the year. Before you begin the hiring process, consider things that would attract you to a job and implement them into your own business.

Make your mission statement and your company culture clear on your website in order to prevent unsuitable candidates applying for roles, saving both yours and the job hunter’s time this year.

Also, take the time to think about the work perks and benefits you can offer employees, and stay true to your word. If you’re advertising flexible working, for example, make sure you stick to that.

(3) Fail to keep social media profiles active

Over a third of the global workforce is expected to be made up of millennials by 2020, and brands need to keep up in order to appeal to millennial job hunters, who are renowned for being active on social media.

The only thing worse than not having a social media presence is having an account that isn’t regularly updated. A Twitter timeline that’s been neglected since 2012 suggests to potential applicants that as a brand you’re lazy, that you don’t interact with customers and that you’re out of touch.

Begin 2018 by setting up a weekly schedule for your company to contribute to the social media world, and across the year monitor the difference it makes in attracting employees.

(4) Lose touch with digital trends

Keeping old and unreliable equipment could lead potential employees to feel that their quality of work will be poor, or they’ll be unable to keep up with the advance of technology that other companies may be using.

Buying high quality devices and technology for the workplace should be seen as an investment, not a waste of money. Quality software can enhance employees’ jobs and help them learn new skills which, in turn, will undoubtedly benefit your business.

(5) Be ambiguous about career progression

If a candidate can’t see a clear career path for them when they interview for a job, they’re unlikely to want to join your team. Having no sense of purpose or direction, combined with feeling unable to see how hard work is paying off, will deter job hunters.

If you’re a new business or startup and you don’t currently have a finalised structure of job roles in place, be transparent with candidates. Explain and prove to them that they’ll have the opportunity to progress within the business as the company grows.

As we get into the full swing of 2018, there’ll be many potential candidates determined to fulfill their new year’s resolution to find their perfect job. With this in mind, there’s never a more important time than the start of the new year to ensure you’re doing everything you can to attract top talent.

In order to improve your business, it’s vital that you find the most suitable and skilled employees possible, so ensure you leave plenty of time for the hiring process. Take the time to carefully plan out the role you want to hire for, the competitive benefits you can offer interviewees, and where you see candidates progressing to.

Andrew Hunter is co-founder at Adzuna, a search engine for job ads visited over 10m times per month.

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