Recruiting is challenging enough when employers get to control most aspects of a hire. In a Candidate-Driven industry or geographic region, the task becomes several degrees more difficult, when the pool of talented individuals qualified for a role are in low supply, with a high demand for their services.
That said, there are several actionable strategies that you can easily implement, to improve your chances of landing the talent that you desire, even when there are multiple companies, all vying for the same candidates.
Check out our guidelines to recruit and land the right people with no regrets, in a candidate-driven market.
Build Your Company Brand with Targeted Marketing Aimed Towards Candidates
Smart companies take the time to create an image and brand a company culture long before the need arises to make critical hires. By cultivating a positive work environment, offering enticing incentives to top performers, and investing the resources to show snippets of your company workplace in social media outlets that your ideal candidates would likely see, will pay off dividends down the line. While all companies understand the need to invest in advertising aimed towards customers, very few seem to grasp the importance of building a truly wonderful place to work from an employee perspective, and then investing resources in an advertising campaign aimed at future hires. By consciously doing this, companies can create an image of such a fantastic workplace, that qualified candidates in the field will want to seek them out .
One of the most effective ways to do this was recently highlighted by a company that created a fun video, that had various employees talk about their jobs, work life balance, showing footage of company parties, award ceremonies, etc., I found it extremely effective in painting a picture of a wonderful, fun work environment and would expect that that one video that HR created will give them a substantial advantage when vying for candidates.
Establish Practical Salary Boundaries
In a Candidate Driven market, salaries naturally rise as is the case in every low supply high demand scenario. The same candidates that were thankful for an interview last year are suddenly able to negotiate higher salaries according to their skills and experience.
And while they have some right to do so, pushing the salary demands too high often means they don’t get the job at all.
Before bidding wars over candidates happen, it is critically important that you decide on a number before things progress too deep in the recruitment process. Ideally, you will want to agree on a salary high enough to be competitive and make the candidate happy, but not too high a number that you simply can’t pay or will regret down the line.
Bringing in a new employee for a substantially higher salary than their colleagues doing the same job runs a very high risk of having the other team members learning about this and suddenly you are faced with two equally undesirable choices; either having to raise everyone else up to match your new employees comp package, or risking an entire team of disgruntled employees.
Comprehend the Relevance of Demands
So you and the candidate settle on a salary, but their expectations do not halt there. Naturally, any candidate today will expect benefits, and in a candidate-driven industry, that list of demands will often be bigger.
From company-provided cars to gym memberships to pet insurance, demands in a recruitment process with the candidate having the upper hand can be stronger, and can easily get out of control. While it’s true that employees deserve more than just a conventional health plan in their benefits packages, you obviously cannot meet every demand.
Employers that come to the offer stage with a realistic understanding of the current marketplace, candidate pool and a clear idea of what they are willing to do to entice someone to join their firm, has multiple benefits. Not only will they not agree to demands in the heat of negotiations that they will eventually regret, but also, just like children, candidates pick up on situations where the decision maker is not firm in what they are willing and not willing to agree to, and ultimately feel better when there are clear lines and they can be confident that they got the best deal possible, rather than feeling regret that if they had pushed for more, they would have received more.
Consider what they are asking for. Is a company car usually offered to an employee in the position you are looking to fill? To what extent will you be fulfilling their travel expenses? It’s critically important that you finalize details such as these before bringing the candidate on board.
Offer a Reality Check
Even during the recruitment process that occurs in a highly candidate-driven market, the employer can turn to a fact in their favor every time: a candidate is never the only candidate. You may find a candidate who has it all—perfect skills and ideal persona for your company—but between various unrealistic demands, hiring them is not feasible for the company.
Don’t hesitate to give them the reality check—they are not the only candidates you are considering.
After all, even the most talented candidate needs to find a job. And if they are truly perfect for you, chances are you might be perfect for them. A reality check can help everyone find what they need.
We have seen countless candidates over the years negotiate themselves out of an offer, by being unrealistic in their demands.
It is critically important during the negotiation period that both sides remember that the goal is to create a long term happy marriage, and if haggling over the size of the ring becomes acrimonious, or if the hiring manager gets the feeling that the candidate is unrealistic in their requests and will never be happy, the deal is lost.
We are constantly coaching candidates in candidate driven markets that while the current conditions may result in them getting a more lucrative offer than otherwise would be expected, they need to be realistic in their requests, and not ruin their chances of employment by being unreasonable in their demands.
Many industries in specific geographic areas have a shallow pool of candidates and companies that employee them to begin with, and we all know that supply and demand can be a fickle thing. Times change, and candidates would be wise to remember that the same hiring manager that they are holding over the barrel for an exorbitant salary may very well be the same hiring manager in a few years time that has a coveted job or maybe the ONLY job that interests them.
Being realistic in expectations is something that a good recruiter can help with, By sharing insider knowledge of local salaries and incentive packages, we can often times steer candidates away from shooting themselves in the foot by demanding more than is reasonable from an offer stand point.
Work with International Search Consultants to find the perfect candidate
ISC can help you navigate the hiring challenges of a candidate-driven market. As headhunters specialized in executive recruitment, we enable managers to reach the most qualified professionals in sales, finance, construction, real estate and other industries.
Since 1999, International Search Consultants has been delivering exceptionally talent candidates to our clients interview table, and assisting in the interview process.
Please call us today for any critical fill hiring needs that you may have, we have experienced recruiters, with access to the best technology available to strategically target very specific candidate skill sets, available to arrange introductions , and assist during the interview process.