Most people saw significant changes to their lives and work during the last year. With most companies moving to a work from home model, employees found themselves adjusting their processes and embracing digital tools. After more than a year since the onset of Covid-19, businesses are starting to see signs of a return to normalcy. While some organizations are preparing to return to the office and others are committing to a permanent remote work format, one thing is certain: the competition for top talent is sure to be fierce. Businesses need to rethink their strategies and find solutions to recruit modern job seekers to stay ahead of the curve. We’ve compiled a list of three things you can do to attract and retain your best candidates in a post-COVID world.
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1. Offer Flexible Work Schedules
At the start of the pandemic, businesses and organizations scrambled to adjust to remote work scenarios. Meetings that once took place in the office were now being held virtually from living rooms, home offices, and kitchen tables. Now, with over a year of remote work under our belts, employees are finding that the newfound freedom and flexibility is something that they crave in their careers.
With vaccination efforts rolling out and a return to normalcy on the horizon, organizations are starting to ramp up their hiring efforts. Still, a lack of available and qualified talent on the market means that competition is fierce. While an entirely remote format might not be an option for all companies, finding ways to create flexibility in scheduling and the workday will be crucial for attracting and hiring the modern job seeker.
How can employers weave some flexibility into their structure if they plan to return to the office?
There are plenty of options that people can embrace, such as flex scheduling or hybrid work formats. In a hybrid model, employers create a schedule that allows employees to work from home for a portion of the week and the office for the remainder of the time. This allows some of the freedom that employees felt over the past year of remote work while also allowing for in-person collaboration and communication.
Another option that some employers are embracing is flex scheduling. With flex schedules, employers dictate a range of hours in which employees are expected to complete their workweek. For example, an employer might allow employees to work anytime from 7 am to 6 pm during the week, granted that they complete a total of 40 hours of work by the end of the workweek. This gives some flexibility in their days to work around personal commitments, appointments, and family needs. The key to using flex scheduling, though, lies in clear communication. Ensure that all employees clearly dictate the hours they will be working so that everyone on their team knows when to expect responses.
2. Use Social Media to Source Candidates
Having a solid online presence in today’s recruiting space is essential for attracting and hiring the best candidates. 79% of job seekers are using digital platforms to connect with businesses and gather information about a potential employer. Curating a strong employer brand that resonates with your workplace culture can help you gain a leg on the competition and attract the most sought-after talent.
When it comes to young professionals, 41% cite using social media as a platform to search for and inquire about job opportunities. Employers should be utilizing their platforms to post about open positions and recruit both passive and active candidates. Chances are you are already using social media to recruit potential employees — 84% of employers say their recruitment efforts involve using social media to some extent. By advertising open positions across a range of job boards, your website, and your social media channels, you can expand your reach and create a wider talent pool.
3. Modernize Your Benefits
In 2021, employer benefits are focusing more on flexibility and employee wellness. The in-person benefits of your office pool table are no longer relevant if your employees are working from home. As you start your recruitment efforts, take some time to review the benefits you offer employees and find ways to reinvigorate your benefits package to reflect the needs of modern workers better. Some benefits to consider include:
- Technology stipends — if your organization is continuing to work remotely, consider offering your employees a stipend to purchase technology or resources that will help to create a more enjoyable and productive work environment. Employers can cover some expenses, including a stipend for internet and WiFi, printing supplies, or other office supplies.
- Childcare and caregiving support — over the past year, many employees have expressed the importance of having childcare or caregiving support from their employers. Working parents have the additional stress of providing care for their younger children, and 40% of working women have considered leaving their jobs due to increased caregiving responsibilities. To help retain these valuable employees and reduce the stress they face, employers should consider offering childcare services or benefits such as extended parental leave or paid family support.
- Mental health support — 70% of working professionals have said the past year was the most stressful of their career. Heightened levels of stress and anxiety can cause employees to drop in productivity or feel signs of burnout in their role. When employers offer mental health support such as telehealth and telemedicine benefits and stress management advice, employees will often see lower rates of stress in the workplace.
- Mentoring programs — mentoring programs are a cost-effective way for skilled employees to train and guide new hires. What’s more, employers who implement mentoring programs see significantly higher retention rates than companies without a set mentoring structure.
- Student debt assistance — the mounting student debt crisis affects millions of employees, hindering their ability to save for retirement and other financial goals. Thanks to recent provisions in stimulus packages, employers can continue to offer assistance for employees with student loan repayment programs.
- Emergency savings funds — this past year demonstrated to many the necessity of having an emergency fund to cover the cost of unforeseen financial struggles. Many employers are looking at offering resources to educate employees on managing finances and creating a fund to draw upon in times of need.
COVID-19 has affected many of our old processes, including how we recruit and retain employees. As your organization begins to ramp up your hiring efforts, make sure your strategies reflect the wants and needs of modern job seekers.
With Caliper’s Precision Series, you can maximize employee strengths and develop areas of improvement through practical skills development — resulting in engaged, productive employees. Reach out to our team of experts to learn more about our science-driven solutions.
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