The New Year has passed, and 2020 invites us to shake off any business mistakes that plagued us in 2019 (we’re looking at you, Peloton ad). If you found hiring to be a challenge in 2019, then it’s time to join thousands of businesses that are rethinking how they find and retain talent. Here are a few tips to help you overcome recruiting challenges in 2020.

Employer Branding = Hiring

Your marketing strategy doesn’t just need to drive sales; it needs to promote your company’s brand to potential employees. Data shows that 9 out of 10 candidates would apply for a job with an employer that actively maintains their brand, and it takes 5 to 7 impressions for people to remember your brand. So if you need talent, you need to ensure people are seeing your content! Work with your marketing team to build a marketing strategy that includes content tailored to your recruiting needs. Put some thought into how your content can show off your engaging work culture.

Rethink “Culture Fit”

Each of our recruiters has seen a candidate denied a job offer solely based on the employer’s requirements for culture fit. While we won’t deny that personal characteristics can matter when it comes to forming a work culture, we have seen people try to maintain their company culture a little too tightly. A few years ago, one of our recruiters watched a team agonize over hiring a qualified candidate just because he didn’t bike to work. Make sure that your ideas about culture fit aren’t too strong. Leave room for diversity of thought and opinion, because diversity is a strength.   

Benefits and Flexibility are King

A 2015 poll found 57% of US employees report that benefits and perks are their top considerations before accepting a job. Of the 54 benefits and perks offered, healthcare, vacation/PTO, and retirement/401k were the most important. While prioritizing benefits may seem like common sense, it becomes even more important when you know that a whopping 90% of Millennials consider benefits their top priority! So, if you’re noticing that the younger folks you want to hire just aren’t accepting your offers, it may be time to find a way to ramp up your benefit options. Offering flexible work options is also another great option; for many young employees, it’s their most desired benefit. If you already have strong benefits, ensure you help candidates understand how your offerings compare to your competitors. 

Interviews are Marketing Opportunities

A 2019 survey by Talentegy says it all: 82% of job seekers would share a positive candidate experience, and 69% would share a negative one. This means that you need to expand how you think about conducting interviews; they aren’t just opportunities to get to know a candidate, they’re opportunities to create passive brand advocates. So while only one candidate can get an offer, every candidate can walk away with a positive impression. Furthermore, a positive impression will only increase the chances that your favorite candidate will accept the offer. Take a look here to see our deep dive into what evidence-based research says about how to leave a positive candidate impression.

Staffing Model Options Exist

Though outsourced recruiters are often a great way to find talent in a crunch, not every staffing agency works for your needs. Most large agencies work on a contingency fee, which means that they’re paid a percentage of the candidate’s first-year salary after a hire. Though this works for many roles, it isn’t always the best model for you. In the worst cases, it incentivizes pushing ill-fitting candidates in hopes that the agency receives a fee. Some agencies that offer this model use large teams of junior recruiters, which can be a drag when you’re conducting high-level searches, and it may negatively affect your brand reputation. Due to the drawbacks of contingency placement firms, some recruiting companies have started offering an hourly based model which creates more of a partnership utilizing senior level recruiters as consultants on each individual search.