When it comes to talent acquisition, the process is as much about vetting applicants as it is auditioning your company to them. It’s all well and good to have a well-written job description, but if you haven’t done the work behind the scenes to really understand who your company is and who you’re looking for, and then communicating this effectively, you run the risk of attracting the wrong talent, or hiring someone that’s not the right fit.
So how do you cut through the noise in a talent short market and attract high performers to your business? Fundamentally, by effectively communicating what makes you different, how potential applicants can benefit from joining your team, and sharing your company’s vision for the future. Let’s break it down in more detail.
Define who your employee is
Rather than simply focussing on the job requirements & relevant experience, also consider:
What you want
- What values should the applicant hold (what aligns with your own/business values)?
- What career progression are they after? Are they able to grow & climb the ladder with your business or are they someone who’s happy to stay long term in the same role?
- How long do you need them? Is it a short term gig or long term role?
- What personality traits fit with your business & team culture?
What’s a deal breaker?
What will you not accept? Defining the deal breakers early means shortlisting is simple. Don’t be too harsh with this though. It’s still a talent short market and you may strike a line through someone that can be shaped into a perfect fit once they’re employed.
Frame all content from an applicant point of view
People are naturally self centred, and rightly so. They’re all about what’s in it for me? So tell them! Why should they work for you and how will it benefit them?
Do you have team building days, events, extra holiday time, rotating Saturdays for site staff or 5 day weeks for office based staff? How about health & wellness – meditation, fitness, wellbeing programs? Do you provide learning, training, etc? How about a 10 in 14 roster, extra sick leave and RDO’s?
Share how you support your employees’ mental health & wellbeing
This is a big one these days. Construction is moving towards really considering mental health and wellbeing and reduction of hours and/or days is a big part of that. Ensuring adequate family/down time is imperative.
How are you addressing mental health & wellness and what initiatives do you offer to provide better work/life balance to your employees? Look back at some of the things you’ve already outlined in the last section. Most importantly, share what outcomes someone can expect in their work life and home life when they utilise your employee support & initiatives.
Showcase your construction sector experience & your ‘why’
Sharing your why draws in the best-fit people; the ones who share similar dreams and are inspired to join you on your journey.
Questions to ask yourself:
What sectors do you work in? Are you planning on expanding into others? What’s your vision for your business in these sectors? What legacy are you creating?
Why do you build in your chosen sectors? Why did you choose them and why do you continue to choose them? Not only does sharing your why attract the best-fit applicants but may lead to interest from amazing people who may not have considered your business as an option before.
Highlight the personal career gains of learning from your leadership team
What can the applicant expect to learn from them, and why should that matter to them? Who will they work with and learn from?
What do your leaders bring? Consider experience in years, roles, tiers, sectors, etc. How do your current employees learn from them? Mentorships? Training? On the job? In meetings? Outline what’s priceless about that leader and their experience and how the applicant can utilise their learnings to enhance their knowledge, career & future prospects.
Share your grand company vision too
What are you trying to accomplish? What’s your grand goal? What difference are you creating in the world? Don’t just state the outcome or goal, explain WHY it’s important to you and your business. This goes beyond your sector experience. It’s the blood that courses through your company veins and when everyone is beating with the same heart, business magic happens.
Ideas could be:
- Building innovation, tech and robotics
People connect through feelings and emotion, not through corporate words that don’t tell them the story behind the brand.
How do you improve the lives of your team and why does that matter?
Your people – this is probably the most significant and yet the least talked about difference you’re making in the world. How are you improving the lives of your employees? Making a difference in your employees’ lives translates not only into a better workplace, but a better homelife, partner and children relationships, family & friendships and even interactions with random strangers. A happy person emanates that energy throughout each and every part of their day. Sometimes a smile or a kind word can be a significant ripple of change in someone’s life, and happy, fulfilled people smile and act with kindness wherever they go.
So how are you making a difference in your employees’ lives? Why do they love coming to work? What do they feel they’re part of? What difference are they trying to make in the world through their work? Your current employee’s personal work visions and values are super magnets when it comes to attracting like-minded people to your business. Ask them why they love working in your business and use these words in your job ad content.
Talent acquisition is a changing landscape and to get the best bang from your job ad buck, the onus is on you to sell what’s in it for the applicant, rather than what’s in it for you. Taking the time to understand what attributes your company requires to grow your team, is a vital first step in the hiring process. Considering how much money is spent finding, hiring, training and keeping the right talent, it’s definitely time well spent. Once you’ve got this down, you can move on to communicating your values and vision, and attracting a gun hire with a shared dream to join you on your business journey.
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