There’s a lot of “buzz” about attracting, retaining and engaging employees these days. Now that the economy is improving and there’s more movement in the job market, the job seeker has more choices. A recent study reported that 70% of employees are looking for a job. Another study reported that only 40% of employees are still engaged after 6 months on the job.
The Times They are A Changin’
If you think you can continue to recruit and hire people the same way you did even 3 or 4 years ago, think again. In addition to the improved economy, the world has changed dramatically since 2008. Think of all the new technologies, legislative and compliance changes, and there can now be 5 generations in a workplace. Boomers are retiring or wanting part time work and Millennials now make up almost 35% of the workforce. This generation has totally different expectations about work, what they want in an employer and how they want to contribute. These are just a few of the changes, new dynamics and challenges that employers are facing.
So if you think you can hide your head in the sand and it will go away you, your business will soon be “irrelevant.”
Hasty Hiring Mindset
Keep in mind that hasty hiring is very costly. Sometimes there’s an attitude of:
- “just get someone in the door” “
- “I need a warm body”
- “I need someone to fill that seat.””
If your organizational culture reinforces these kinds of attitudes, re-read the first paragraph. Because you will have a revolving employment door that will cost you tens and even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Hidden Hiring Costs
For example, we all know that “time is money.” Yet, we forget to count the time spent in reviewing resumes, interviewing and temporary fees or search firm placement fees – those are all real dollars.
One also must include the training time needed to get the person on board and functioning somewhat competently. From my experience, people in most non-exempt positions will take about 6 months before they are relatively skilled in job duties but it can take a year before they are competent to perform all job duties. For an exempt position it can take a year to two years to be fully functioning, depending on the complexity of the work and adapting to the culture. Calculate the salary and benefits and we’re talking significant dollars. If benefits and employer contributions are about 40% of base wages, a $25,000 position becomes $35,000 and a $50,000 becomes $70,000.
If you have a revolving door in these positions you’re wasting a lot of money without much return on your investment. In this case of $25,000 wage earner who leaves in six months, you’ve wasted over $17,000 and will start the process over again. You do the math…
5 ideas to attract the right people – the people who will stay:
1) Have clear job descriptions. It sounds obvious, yet unclear accountabilities and experience requirements can result in a poor candidate selection pool. In addition, a well written position description saves the recruiter or hiring manager time by screening out unqualified candidates.
2) Highlight the best features of your organizational culture in your job posting. This will help attract the people who want to be in that kind of environment. Not everybody wants an onsite gym or to bring their dog to work. There are people who are looking for a solid, stable workplace or one that prides itself on service.
3) Post the job opening in places that your best-fit employees will be looking. Which online job boards are the best? Internal referral bonus programs can often be a good solution.
4) Ask relevant job related questions when you interview people. Ask for examples of how they performed XYZ, based on the accountabilities of the job description.
5) If you have core values or know the traits of the people who do best in your work environment, ask appropriate, (aka legal) , questions about how they demonstrated those core values or traits on the job. For example, how do they manage multiple priorities? Or provide an example of excellent customer service in a sticky situation.
Watch for the next blog: Another One Bites the Dust – Part 2: Corporate Culture and the First 90 days.
Marty Stanley is a national speaker, author and consultant on organizational change. As a former human resource executive in three dramatically different cultures, she can help you save time and money … and make more money by attracting and retaining the right people.