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Edition 331 – Rare As Hen’s Health

Most businesses can’t find staff right now. Anywhere. No one is immune, it would seem.

In a recent conversation with my good friend and business mentor, Phil Symchych, who resides in Regina, Saskatchewan, smack bang in the prairies of Canada, he remarked that on local commercial radio at the moment, he is hearing more advertisements for staff than he is for businesses advertising their wares.

In terms of what is working and has worked in the past in terms of recruitment, here’s what I’ve seen that works:

  1. Paying recruitment bonuses to staff that introduce someone to the business – remembering that “like” knows “like”, so you only do it with your performers.
  2. Merely asking your team, who do they know? I’m surprised at how few business owners actually go down this road.
  3. Developing relationships with local sporting clubs. One client had a 20 year relationship with a local soccer club that created a steady inward flow of potential staff, both permanent and casual. Recruitment in that business was never an issue.
  4. Using Facebook and other forms of social media that are targetted to particular groups. For instance, I’ve had clients over the years, including today, that have focussed on attracting Irish & British travellers looking for work in Australia, via social media.
  5. Rather than recruit for experienced staff, taking on apprentices or trainees, then investing time and money bringing them up to speed to where you’d like them to perform. Yes, it is a long term investment and yes, it can fail. However, of those businesses that have done it, there’s generally a twofold return – firstly, those individuals are indoctrinated into how you do it (rather than you trying to snap them out of their old habits) and secondly, they hang around longer.
  6. Running business information events for people in your database and inviting clients, potential employees and other contacts along so they understand what it is you do and what type of people you’re looking to recruit.
  7. In the event you can’t source staff, then consider casting the net wide and seeking out good subcontractors. One business was able to switch out a fair portion of their regional work to subcontractors in local towns and cities rather than sending their own team on the road, which meant a contractual obligation that was previously unprofitable, finally turned a dollar. Another business found out that one of their subcontractors liked working for them so much, they closed up their own business to work full time for their client.

I’m not a great fan of online platforms such as Seek or Indeed. Whilst I accept they work for some businesses, I’ve often seen those forums become a dumping ground for candidates who bomb their resumes into job advertisements, rather than actually read the scope of the advertised position. I’m of the strong opinion there are more creative and effective ways to recruit rather than resort to the modern day equivalent of the classifieds in the Saturday newspapers.

This Week’s Tip

” Recruitment is an ongoing and multi pronged process. The sooner that business owners realise that,
the sooner they’ll have options regarding potential employees,
rather than merely accepting whomever has applied (and sometimes, that is only one person).”