January 30, 2023

It’s currently more challenging than ever to recruit top talent – but that doesn’t mean that talent isn’t out there. It just means you need to think a little harder about how you approach every aspect of your hiring process!

In this post, we share five simple but successful recruitment tips that can help transform your approach to landing new hires.


1. Look for transferable skills - not the perfect match to narrowly-defined criteria

As we mentioned in our blog post introducing Dynamite Training, any company currently trying to recruit staff like they would have pre-pandemic is in for a rude awakening.

Before the first lockdown, businesses tended to be ultra-specific about what they wanted to see on a candidate’s CV. If the details didn’t match the spec, that person wasn’t getting an interview.

These days it’s not so black and white. ‘Exact-match’ candidates are far fewer and farther between, so the first of our five Simple recruitment tips is to open your mind and look a little deeper through each CV you see.

It might be that the candidate doesn’t have two years’ experience. Would six months do if you offer them comprehensive training? It could also be that they don’t have call handling experience, but they do have extensive experience in retail or hospitality sectors, where those customer service skills can transfer across.

It’s an intensely challenging market at the moment, so you’re far better off looking for a diamond in the rough over waiting for that one rare, polished gem to make themselves known.

2. (Re)structure your teams to offer an attractive career path

In our piece on the importance of ongoing talent management, we mentioned the problem created by the ‘glass ceiling effect.’ In other words, once your new hire masters their new role, will there be a role above them they can progress into? If the answer is no, and they ask the right questions at interview, they’re quickly going to figure out that you haven’t thought things through when it comes to career progression.

The second of our five simple but successful recruitment tips is to look at how you can structure your team if it’s a brand new one, or restructure your existing setup to make the vacant role more attractive for the longer term.

If you can communicate to applicants at interview that there’s the potential to become a more senior version of their current role – together with better pay and further training prospects – that could be very attractive. Likewise, if you can point to examples of other team members who have progressed into more senior roles within that team or the wider company, it will make your open vacancy all the more attractive.

Better still, this isn’t just something you should talk about at interview – you should shout about it in job descriptions and even on your company’s website. Make a big deal about the culture of progression you have within your organisation and people are much more likely to see it as a place they can progress their own careers.

Which, neatly enough, brings us to…

3. Use social media to pull back the curtain on your company culture

Social media is one of the very best ways to shout about what’s going on in your workplace.

It works so well because social posts cut through the typical barriers imposed by corporate communications – in several important ways.

For starters, at the business level, brand marketing is often handled by a very select set of people within a business. It’s something HR teams and hiring managers rarely get a say in, which can create a disconnect between the public face of the company and the actual experience of working there. However, they’re much more likely to be given access to the company’s recruitment Twitter feed, for instance – where they can then take pictures, videos and more that show the real day-to-day within the company’s walls.

And that’s often a powerful approach because from a candidate’s perspective, it comes across as authentic rather than curated. Social media is essentially an organic medium, and usually works best when it’s capturing a true-to-life, behind-the-scenes experience, as opposed to something sanitised by seven levels of corporate signoffs. That’s why using social media intelligently and creatively is one of our top five recruitment tips for any hiring company.

4. Simpify your application process

In a working world with fewer candidates looking to make a move, you need to do everything you can to make your application process as simple and straightforward as possible.

That might mean thinking on your feet and doing away with parts of your process that ask applicants to do a lot of work up front.

For instance, it might be that asking for a 1,000-word sample article, lengthy personal statement or several-slide annotated Powerpoint presentation has worked well for your hiring process in the past. But in the current climate, candidates are likely to be put off by that – and will opt to apply for the next most similar job spec that doesn’t have those criteria.

The fourth of our five top recruitment tips for 2022 (and, in all likelihood, the next few years) is therefore to minimise how much effort you ask candidates to put in up-front. The role, salary and company may all be very attractive, and in normal circumstances might warrant an attitude of “let’s see who impresses us most.” But this is a candidate’s market, and the businesses who adjust to that will be in the best position to fill open roles promptly.

5. Rethink onboarding

It’s tempting to think that a new hire with the right skills and experience can just be dropped into a role and expected to soar. But even if they’re a near enough ‘exact match’ for the job spec, your company’s culture, structure and working processes will be foreign to them. And, if you follow our advice from the first of our five top recruitment tips, they probably won’t be an exact match at all.

That just makes it even more important that you thoroughly think through your business’s onboarding process.

First impressions matter. In fact, one study says that between 28-33% of new hires quit in their first three months – with a lack of proper onboarding certain to be a contributing factor. The last of our five simple but successful recruitment tips is to invest in the right onboarding technology (e-learning courses, for example), and plan a rough structure for your new hires’ first days on the job that can be roughly replicated no matter which department they join.