Recruitment in a competitive marketplace

A shortage of suitable candidates means employers are having to up their game to find the right people
by Brian Gorman


With staff shortages at their highest for many years, employers are having to come up with new ways of attracting the right people.

In 2022 “employers either rose to meet the demands of their candidates or they failed to attract the talent they needed to keep operations running smoothly,” according to a Forbes article.  

The article includes tips on how to attract staff:

  • Have a strong employee referral programme. Candidates referred by a trusted source are more likely to be a solid match for the position.
  • Employers should “cast a wide net” in the search for talent, including through career fairs and job boards.
  • Show potential hires how they can grow and learn within the business and assure them you don’t expect them to stay in the same place for years.
  • Ensure you have a “strong employer brand” to attract the best and the brightest.
  • Show flexibility in working practices, in relation to working from home, and working hours.
  • Ensure you have a diverse workforce.

Clarity of job description

It is vital to be clear about the role and its duties, according to an article on HRnews. "If a job description isn't straightforward, applicants may avoid putting themselves forward for the role as they may not feel fully qualified or may even assume the job is not challenging enough.

Salary is always important and could “make or break” a candidate’s decision to apply, says the article. It advises researching what competitors offer for a similar role and adds: “If your salary offerings aren’t as high as others, then ensure to make a point of the other interesting perks your company may offer, such as flexible hours, hybrid working, private healthcare, or life insurance cover”.

The article points out that interpersonal skills are also important, as a candidate has to fit in with the team, reflect the company values and represent the company, so employers should look beyond job skills. “If someone shows the right attitude and is willing to learn, it can sometimes even be more suited to upskill the candidate with the right mindset, than changing someone’s attitude!’’

Higher expectations Candidates now have higher expectations when applying for roles, according to an article on Reworked by Michelle Hawley.

“Today’s workers don’t just want a job with competitive pay and benefits. They also want a company they can trust and a place where they feel they fit in and have a purpose,” writes Hawley, drawing from research published by McKinsey in 2021

Hawley says the recruitment process, “when done right, can attract higher quality candidates, assist in promoting a strong sense of culture and, ultimately, cultivate a well-rounded, positive employee experience”.

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Published: 03 Feb 2023
  • Soft Skills
  • Recruitment

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