Finding and recruiting new employees is no easy task. As top talent is moving from one startup to another, they are looking for a rewarding, professional environment that values their individual talents and provides career development opportunities. For well-known companies, attracting the most talented individual can be as simple as posting a single Facebook or Twitter update. But, for smaller businesses without a well-known employer brand, it can get rather difficult to find great talent interested in an opportunity to work for them.
Where big companies have people lining up for the chance to join their organizations, small to medium sized businesses may end up waiting months for the ideal candidate to appear on their roster. This is particularly true when it comes to hiring for technical roles where evaluating a candidate’s skill set and ability to think outside the box becomes a strenuous task for recruiting teams without a well thought out process.
With that said, leveraging these 9 employer brand strategies can help you not only attract great technical talent but stay ahead of the curve.
Maintain your public image
In today’s internet-driven world, the best candidates find out everything they possibly can about a company long before they walk into an interview. This comes as no surprise, considering the amount of information about startups readily available on blogs and sites like CrunchBase and Quora, as well as Twitter and Facebook, networks frequently used by executives, investors, and founders.
This, coupled with official websites which detail all the products and services offered by a company make it a lot easier for candidates to find out what they will be walking into. Ensuring that your internal team takes the time to maintain a public profiles which accurately reflect what your company has to offer and how employees feel is crucial to making a lasting first impression.
Invest in thoughtful job descriptions
Always focus on the fine details when posting a new job description. If the position you are offering has flexible working options, make sure to include that information in the posting. It’s perfectly normal to state that all the specifics can be tailored towards meeting the needs of both the company and the employee.
Try to include as many specifics as you can regarding the job in question to avoid misunderstandings during the interview process, or worse, once the candidate has already been brought on as an employee.
Know your competition
Staying ahead of the competition is essential for developing any business, but the same can be said about maintaining a healthy pipeline of great candidates that are eager to join your team. Invest time into researching what others in your space are doing as a means to develop a detailed and enticing presentation which details how your company addresses employee benefits. Keep in mind, the recruiting process is a two way street - you are selling the company as much as the candidates who is looking. Whether your company offers competitive pay, opportunities for a promotion or simply has strong relationships with customers; make sure to incorporate these selling points within your job offering.
Honesty is the best policy
There’s a very fine line between pushing a sales pitch and highlighting the best features of your company to a potential hire. The more experienced candidates can easily detect when someone’s trying to sweet talk them into a deal, so make sure to paint an accurate picture of how your company functions and the responsibilities they will be taking on. Although making a positive impression is a priority, be candid around the growth areas your team may be experiencing.
Offer training opportunities
Hire with foundational skill set and potential in mind. Of course finding the perfect candidate is ideal but it’s important to identify candidates who can grow into a role. Building a strong team involves bringing on people who will become a valuable asset over time through training opportunities. Although larger competitors could easily offer a more attractive salary, many developers prefer incubator-type environments where they can grow with their teams and do work that creates a direct impact on the product they are working on. Keep in mind, it’s not just about what the candidate could do for you but what your company could do for the potential employee.
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Create an internal referral program
This is the era of professional and social networking online. With people sharing some of the same interests, it’s safe to say that your employees could potentially be connected to dozens of potential job candidates. Take time to share information regarding current openings and encourage referrals.
A hub for new and exciting ideas
Many startups invite guest speakers in order to not only keep their employees engaged but also informed about the latest industry trends. Exceptional speakers attract engaged and highly qualified audiences, which makes inviting them one of the best tactics you can use for scouting new and up-and-coming talent. Finding a potential candidate is as simple as picking the one asking all the right questions after the presentation. Be on the lookout for such individuals and entice them by offering entrepreneur training or working on a project that is particularly engaging to them.
Know their career goals
Most software engineers tend to work on open-source projects or new technologies, which have the greatest potential of becoming bankable assets. They realize that they will be evaluated based on public domain information associated with their name. You can’t expect them to remain in your company for more than a few years and it’s important to show them that you understand that they have plans for the future. Showcase company alumni starting their own businesses or offer to introduce them to professionals in your network they may connect with.