Instead of focusing on unique candidates, how about stressing what is unique about your company and appealing to top talent?
Employee churn costs your company money, time, and success. Finding the perfect snowflake, or the unattainable purple squirrel is a pipe dream for a company without a vision of itself, or a good understanding of its “employee value proposition (EVP).”
Your hiring manager or recruiter can fill your recruiting pipeline with applicants who have the features you want on paper, only to find your chosen candidate turns you down, or worse, they leave within six months of hire. If you are approaching your talent needs with curiosity, an informed background, a stable hiring metric, and a resilient, positive company culture, you have created a recruiting cycle unique from most—and your firm will gain the benefit of the effort.
We are a recruiting and search firm for Midwestern companies looking for professional candidates in operations, technical, engineering, executive, CRM, and more. We handle sourcing, selecting, and advancing the kind of talent for which the corporate world is currently “at war.” With more than a decade in the field, we have deep talent pools, but our focus is understanding the EVP. So what are we really talking about when we talk about uniqueness?
Unique is a two-way street
If you are looking for specialized skills, the first stop is your EVP. Even just a few years ago, employers did not need to worry too much about marketing their company to top talent picks. With plenty of qualified candidates, applicants were vying for too few jobs and happy to get the nod.
Fast forward to today, with a tight talent marketplace and employers left with job vacancies that need to be filled. As the “war for talent,” has progressed, “engagement” has become important as a tool to attract and retain high quality employees.
Employee engagement and a company value proposition are not new concepts. They are terms used to talk about why someone would want to work at your firm, and how you might keep them interested in the company once they are on-boarded.
Dr. Brad Shuck, an Associate Professor with the University of Louisville Department of Educational Leadership, Evaluation, and Organizational development brings the concept of EVP home when he says, “A value proposition represents the psychological framework human beings use to make decisions. It is the why of the relationship.”
Your unique value proposition is what you have to offer to a candidate that leads them to employment with your company. Dr. Shuck points out that everyone has different drivers—you cannot create an employment landscape attractive to all comers. Yet an established, authentic EVP becomes a valuable sales and retention tool for hiring high quality applicants at all levels. Dr. Shuck defines three must-haves for your EVP:
Fair and appropriate compensation, however that looks in your company
“Dignity in work”
Overall “belief that individual work is meaningful”
Reducing churn, boosting retention, and finding the right candidates means a company, according to Dr. Shuck, must answer two questions:
Why would someone want to apply and accept employment with you company?
Why would they want to stay in your employ?
The first step in a successful recruiting cycle is to understand what your company needs—and has to offer.
When you work with HR or your recruiter to find high-level talent, make sure you can identify how the unique opportunity available at your company is appealing to the personality and skillset of the kind of candidates you seek.
When you take the hard look, it may reveal why you are, or are not, finding and keeping the talent you want.