It’s difficult to say which is a bigger challenge for employers: recruiting or retention. After all, hiring great people means nothing if they leave within their first year. And that happens — a lot. Companies with low turnover tend to provide employees with what I call the three “Characteristics of Retention,” which are culture/values recognition, community impact, and continuous learning. But just having those cultural attributes nailed isn’t enough.
“Before we go any further, you should know this about me: I’m going to be honest and open with you, whether it’s something you want to hear or not.”
While that statement makes for an interesting article introduction, I started with it for a different reason: It’s also what I tell employers at the beginning of our recruiting relationship.
Most of the time, to fill most jobs, you don’t need the help of a recruiter. That’s a bold statement coming from someone who recruits candidates for a living, but it’s true. And it’s not something every recruiter is willing to admit.
These days, many recruiting firms have a dirty little secret: They find candidates in the same ways and in the same places you find them. They’ll check LinkedIn, they’ll use Indeed, they’ll access Monster and CareerBuilder tools, just as you would. There are no longer any magical proprietary databases that hold treasure troves of job candidates that can’t be accessed by anyone else.
Companies continue to look for ways to make sure the talented employees they hire become onboarded and then engaged in the company’s values as soon as possible in that first year.
It’s never been more important for your company to refine its core values. With competition for top talent heating up, these values will make or break your recruiting and retention efforts. They’ll help determine who is attracted to your jobs and, if your values are authentically grounded in your company’s culture, they’ll help ensure your new recruits will be valuable team members for a long time.
It’s not going to get easier, folks. The talent gap that we’re facing in today’s workforce, specifically in tech and engineering, is going to get wider and wider with no end in sight.