The way of attaining and retaining candidates has changed enormously in the last 15 years.
The ‘War for talent’ was first declared by McKinsey & Company, a management consulting firm, in 1997 due to a high demand for talent which was exceeding its supply. Employers used to have great power and control over employees; however due to the fierce competition companies were facing to attain and retain talent, they started losing that power and control. In 2014 Josh Bersin, the founder of a leading industry research and advisory firm in enterprise learning and talent management, stated that the war is over and the clear winner is talent.
Remarkable transparency offered by the social media sites like LinkedIn, Xing, Instagram, and Facebook leads to candidates being flooded with job opportunities daily, and more importantly, it gives candidates an opportunity to do even more research on the company than a company could do on the candidate. Based on anonymous reviews that can be read on various job websites, conversations that can be had with other people, social media that can be visited, candidates can now decide within seconds whether they want to apply or work for a certain company. Around 78% of candidates make their decisions based on company’s reputation. All these factors take away power and control from recruiters and companies.
In order to attract the talent they want, companies need to be different and find unique ways of approaching candidates. Above all, they need to showcase themselves and build their brand. A strong brand often means a great workplace, high cultural values, and appreciation of ideas and differences. Furthermore, it is as important to go above and beyond for candidates from start to finish. Creating different job advertisements, improving and optimizing applications process, treating them with the utmost respect from the first interview, even if they are not the perfect candidate. Building a good relationship is important regardless if the candidate will work for you or not. If they will work for you and the feeling of respect and caring is mutual, you can be sure the candidate will give its best on the job. If the candidate will not be working for you, it is equally important to create a good relationship since they might refer you to their family or friends, but only if they had a positive experience with the application process.
Talent has so many options to choose from today. They no longer have to sell themselves to companies; now companies have to sell themselves to talent. If companies treat candidates as their own customers, if they wisely and carefully choose a way of approaching them, find out what they want and what they need, they are one step closer to attaining (and retaining) talent that will make their business bigger and better.
Author: Melita Ferjanic