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A wooden chess board with a leather couch in the background | Using strategy to hire talent in Lehigh Valley, Delaware Valley, Eastern PA

Top 3 Talent Recruiting Strategies for Small Businesses

For companies that aren’t the size of Google or Amazon, it can be challenging to attract top talent in today’s job market. With current national unemployment rates around 3.7%, a lot of small to medium sized businesses are experiencing empty seats, which is costly to the bottom line. These companies need effective talent recruiting strategies to stay competitive.

If this scenario sounds all too familiar, you’re not alone. Below are the top three secrets about how to effectively compete for top talent like seasoned talent acquisition pros do—from the experienced recruiting team here at RAI Resources.

1. Employer branding can really move the needle.

“You can’t sell it if you can’t tell it.” That’s a rough adaptation of a Beth Comstock quote that essentially posits that you need to tell a story about your company in order to ‘sell’ the position. This is where your employer branding comes into play. Developing and promoting your organization as an employer of choice within your industry and/or community to the targeted candidates and stakeholders you want is more important today than ever before.

Many organizations are clear about their brand to their clients and consumers, but have not given enough thought to the image and reputation projected to their current and future employees. This is unfortunate, because employer branding impacts recruiting strategies more than most people might think.

Here’s to how to start building your employer brand:

  1. Survey your employees. Why did they choose to apply to your business? What keeps them there? What do they love about their role?
  2. Take stock of your competitive intelligence. Who are your top talent competitors and what are their stories? How can you communicate your differentiators to stand out?
  3. Analyze the themes that you see. What from the first two action items can be incorporated with your company mission, vision and values? These themes are the crux of your employer brand.

2. Your tribe is one of your best sources for ambassadors.

Your current employees can be your best recruiting tools, especially in this competitive talent market. Whether it’s bringing team members to a recruiting event, sharing their professional profiles online or offering incentives for candidate referrals, your current employees can serve as  an extension of your talent acquisition team. Candidates love hearing directly from their would-be peers as to what it’s really like to work at your organization, what a typical day to day can consist of and what the company culture is like. It’s also true that employee referrals are more likely to be a strong culture fit, which positively correlates to higher retention and productivity rates.

Your senior leadership can also be a part of the recruiting process. When senior leadership takes the time to meet prospective candidates, that signals that they care about the people that they hire at their company. What’s more,  that executives tend to be some of the best sales people at the company, so use that to your advantage!

3. Be scrappy and get creative to help cut through some of the ‘recruiting noise’ out there.

When you are creative and authentic with your efforts, it resonates more with people. And it doesn’t have to cost a ton of money. If you’re a retail fashion business that experiences a lot of turnover, for example, you can create stories about your company on Instagram for next to nothing that impact your target audience right where they virtually hang out. If you’re a tech company, you can start a blog with weekly tech talent profiles on Medium. This also can be done at little to no cost.

However you choose to reach out in a unique way, you’ll need to determine where your ideal candidates are and what messages will resonate with them. Keep in mind that a company Instagram account or blog isn’t likely to go viral in just two weeks, so have patience. With time, consistency, and solid, authentic content, you can build your brand without a hefty investment.

Don’t have that kind of time to implement the effective professional search strategy you know that you need?

Do you have immediate recruiting needs that are vital to your business? We can help. RAI Resources is an experienced HR consulting firm that can bring your business the real-world human resources experience it needs to be successful and grow. Our experts have helped clients across many manufacturing, engineering, construction, professional services and more. We offer practical solutions and provide comprehensive support to help you recruit. On the other end of the spectrum, we can assist you with services such as outplacement, effective workforce planning, and more. RAI Resources services the Lehigh Valley, Delaware Valley, Eastern Pennsylvania and Central New Jersey.

Connect with our team today to learn more.