Keep Your Crew: Creative Ways to Attract and Retain Top Talent

Business.com / Hiring / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

Due to changes in recruitment practices, wading through talent pools is no longer the primary manner in which to recruit top talent.

How does the person in charge of hiring in your business measure top talent?

Recruiters surveyed in the United States use three main avenues. Turnover or retention statistics (57 percent), hiring manager satisfaction (42 percent), and new hire performance evaluations (40 percent) round out their methods.

Top talent is also gauged by tenure and how quickly a candidate has been promoted. Due to changes in recruitment practices, wading through talent pools is no longer the primary manner in which to recruit top talent.

Companies must be far more proactive if they want the best candidate. They can't drop bait into a pond and hope for a bite. Attracting and retaining top talent requires relationship building.

Related Article: How to Recruit Top Talent (Even if Your Company Isn’t Cool)

Create a Current in Existing Talent Pools

In the U.S., recruiting highly skilled talent is a top priority for 30 percent of more than 1,600 individuals surveyed by LinkedIn. These respondents either source new talent or manage client relationships and/or a recruitment team.

Of the organizations surveyed, close to 70 percent either agree or strongly agree that other recruitment firms are their biggest obstacles in recruiting top talent. With the understanding that company promotion leads to more revenue, more and more U.S. companies use branding as a means to get an edge over the competition.

These companies recognize the value in creating dialogue and building relationships with potential candidates prior to recruitment. As a result, company promotions are transitioning away from traditional job boards (33 percent) to online professional networks (60 percent).

Initiate Referral Programs

Globally, employee referral programs recruit 32 percent of quality talent. In the U.S. job boards account for 39 percent, employee referrals 43 percent, and social professional networks 44 percent of new hires. But companies have found that it's less about quantity and more about quality.

Related Article:Super Sneaky Recruiting Tips You've Never Considered

So they've begun to rely more heavily on employee referral programs. If you don't have an employee referral program in place, here's why Zao.com suggests you should:

  1. One candidate is hired for every five referred as opposed to one for every 100 job board candidates.
  2. Relatedly, referral candidates are high quality candidates that are five times more likely to be hired.
  3. Companies retain referred employees at a rate of 46 percent. The job board retention rate is far lower, at 22 percent.
  4. Referred employees are high performers in comparison to any other recruitment avenues.
  5. Looking for a great cultural fit? Referrals typically fit right in because your employees already have a good sense of your company culture.
  6. Referrals offer your highest return on investment.

According to a Gallup study, employees with a best friend at work are seven times more fully engaged than other workers. Additionally, employment satisfaction is bumped up by 50 percent when employees have close working relationships.

Lastly, if a referred candidate is hired, CareerBuilder found that it makes existing employees feel as though they've made a positive contribution to the company. When trusted to play such an active role within the company, employees tend to feel more connected to their organization.

This CareerBuilder guide shows you how to successfully implement an employee referral program that: 

  • Motivates your employees to participate
  • Communicates all aspects of the program to employees
  • Helps you measure its effectiveness

Invest in Retention

Internal recruiting is one of the best ways to retain the top talent you've recruited and hired. But in the U.S., internal recruiting has been found to occur sporadically, on a case-by-case basis. This indicates that many employers drop the ball once they recruit top talent.

Even though internal recruiting is one of the most direct avenues toward employee retention, only 24 percent of global organizations surveyed in 2015 have a well-defined internal advancement program. In the U.S., only six percent of close to 4,000 recruiters surveyed considered internal hiring and transfers amongst their recruitment priorities.

Related Article: Millennials In the Workplace: How Will They Affect Hiring?

Why recruit top talent without a plan to retain those new hires? Here are some employee retention points to consider: 

  • Create an onboarding experience for new hires that not only welcomes them, but also helps them transition into the company and develop new skills.
  • Open communication, supportive and trustworthy management, and confidence in employee abilities are some benefits of creating a positive work environment that would encourage employees to stick around.
  • Internal advancement options help employees envision a long-term commitment to your company.

What about you? How do you attract and retain top talent?

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