Published: 3 December 2020

Recruiting and retaining the best talent should always be a pivotal part of your business strategy and will ultimately be instrumental in the success of any organisation. Creating the right culture isn't easy but here are 5 simple tips that will help you along the way -

#1 – Recruiting starts with crafting an appealing Job Specification

You would be forgiven for thinking that in a market with high volumes of job seekers, it should be easy to attract new talent. The reality is, that with such high volumes of applicants, it becomes a harder task to find the ideal candidate. Before you even embark on your recruitment campaign, understanding who you are seeking to attract and why they should want to join your organisation is key.

Crafting an appealing job specification takes more than simply writing down a list of the role’s activities and candidate qualifiers. Written correctly, it will showcase your business and create a strong level of appeal that will attract the right calibre of candidates to apply to your role. Mastering the balance between providing enough detail to create that appeal and keeping it concise enough not to bore the reader is a difficult task.

Here’s a link to a more detailed guide as to How to craft an appealing role specification.

#2 – Show us your good side

When it comes to recruiting and retaining talent, it’s important to ensure your organisations “Social image” reflects the positive aspects of why it’s so great to work there. Offering potential new employees an insight into your culture will go along way towards building their desire to want to jump on board. We all live in a very “Social” world these days, with so much information available through just a couple of clicks, you must make the most of every opportunity to tell your story.

Most job seekers will be familiar with LinkedIn (other social channels are available!) and you can almost guarantee that before they consider applying to a position with your business, they will have checked out your LinkedIn company profile. Checking out things like your testimonials, social activity, latest news etc.

If your company doesn’t have a profile set up, it’s worth considering starting to build one, here’s a link to How to build a LinkedIn company page.

Creating a social identity for your business will help to promote your USP’s, create appeal and offer candidates an insight into the plus points of working with you. A slight note of caution though, remember bad news often travels twice as fast as good, so consider your content carefully.

So go on, show us your good side!

#3 - Do your “Perks” work?

“Customers will never love a company until the employees love it first”. – Simon Sinek

A recent study found that almost 70% of employees ranked additional benefits as equal or greater importance than their basic salary. Although, not the only way to engage your current/prospective employees, the benefits you offer should always rank as a high priority.

Aon’s Benefits & Trends study of 200 organisations asked which benefits their employees regarded as appealing.  The results conclusively found that flexible working hours and the option for agile/home working ranked as the top two most important perks for employees. The study produced some interesting results regarding other benefits such as holiday entitlement too, where 89% of all employers questioned, offer their employee’s 25 or more days annual leave.

One thing that the current Covid pandemic has highlighted is the importance of work-life balance. Sure, we may love the company we work for but we value flexibility and our time off just as much. Perhaps it’s time to review your employee benefits to see if they are adding real value to your attraction and retention strategy.

#4 – L & D is Key to retaining the best talent

It’s not often we hear the phrase, “Job for Life” anymore. Whilst most employees are unlikely to stay in the same role for their entire career, we should at least be encouraging them to remain in the same organisation by promoting learning & development opportunities.

Whenever I engage new candidates, “Ongoing personal and professional development” often features highly on their “wish list” of employer benefits. If you’re passionate about offering opportunities for development, then it’s vital to ensure you shout about it at every stage of your recruitment process. Sending out the message that you invest in your people will go a long way to helping to attract a high calibre of applicants.

Having a strong L & D strategy will always have a positive impact on retention figures too. Up-skilling your employees will maintain motivation levels and ultimately keeps your best talent engaged. Developing your current team will also offer a great payback when it comes to recruiting for future roles.

Alongside engaging Bespoke Recruitment, L & D could be one of your best recruitment tools when it comes to overcoming your future staffing challenges

If you don’t already have a Learning & Development policy, it's worth taking a look at CIPD's Guide to creating a Learning & Development policy

#5 – It's always wise to recognise

One of the best ways to improve your recruitment and retention rates is the ensure you create a “Reward & Recognition” culture.  Recognition will always have a positive impact on boosting your employee's morale. We all like to feel appreciated for our contribution, no more so than in the current climate where wellbeing may be a little fragile.

Adopting a culture of recognition for those that have gone that extra mile will often help to boost overall productivity too. Reward and recognition schemes don’t necessarily need to have big budgets thrown at them, sometimes something as simple as a “Thank You” can go a long way. It’s often the smallest gestures that have the biggest impact.

Showing your appreciation can take many forms from simple recognition emails, Gift cards, Extra Days holidays and of course the classic, (but still one of the most powerful)  “Employee of the Month” awards.  I recently had the pleasure of being informed that a candidate I helped to find a new role in August had been awarded the client’s, “Employee of the Month” just 3 months into her tenure.  Do you know who informed me?....she did, she was buzzing, feeling so welcomed and valued as their new employee, she couldn’t wait to tell me. The feeling she got from a simple recognition was priceless.

So if you are looking to give your retention rates a boost, take a good look at your R’s!!!

Recruiting and Retaining the best talent will always be pivotal to the success of any organisation. Perhaps we should leave the last word on this subject to Richard Branson, who once said - “Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough, so they don’t want to”.