Hiring staff in the current climate
Despite the apparent economic downturn and need to work remotely, recruitment is still very much relevant. To hire effectively in the current climate, you’ll need to think critically, use innovation and manage expectations in light of the circumstances.
The need to hire employees will always be prevalent – even in a bear economy and a bleak-looking market. Modern history has taught us that there will always be organisations and industries that will continue recruiting people to come on board and fill certain roles.
But, as we stand in the face of an economic downturn and a global health crisis, there’s no such thing as ‘business as usual’ – and that includes the approach taken when bringing on new staff.
Recruitment methods that are used in a thriving economy are different to the ones that need to be used now, and it’s up to you to adapt to the changes and take the appropriate approach to hiring in the current climate.
If a position within your organisation opens up and you need to undergo an effective recruitment process in the current economic climate – here are a couple of ideas that will help you attract, lock in and effectively onboard the right person for the role.
Construct the role based on the climate
In a thriving economy, it is far easier to hire full-time employees who focus on specific areas. When demand is high, you can invest heavily into sales and marketing, and when you’ve got a big team, there are several full-time roles that are needed to manage it.
Once things become tough, the narrative changes. It suddenly becomes harder to justify those roles as they are and many of the existing position descriptions will inevitably need a facelift.
Restructuring a position description to be relevant and effective during a trying period for an economy isn’t as simple as it might sound. A delicate balance of realism and optimism needs to be struck, and each role needs to be viewed as a dynamic work in progress if it is to be effective.
A primary area of consideration that needs to be taken into account is the level of commitment required in order to fill the existing gap on the team.
Roles that might have been fit for a full-time commitment may need to be changed to part-time, or as priorities shift, a role that was once only part-time may become needed on an ad-hoc basis in anticipation of heavy fluctuation.
Reforming position descriptions is also about considering how to get the most out of an employee when the traditional methods of performing certain tasks becomes impractical.
Take a sales associate for instance. In normal circumstances, a large portion of their time may often be dedicated to travelling to meetings – but considering the lock-downs and restrictions, travel isn’t really an option, leaving the employee with more time than they know what to do with.
Seeing as most sales associates need to be involved in the business in a full-time capacity to effectively grow the business, adjusting the position description for new sales associates to include responsibilities that make up for the lack of travel time is key in making the most of the circumstances.
Read: Tapping into your employees’ hidden skillsets
Start leveraging HR-tech
The human resources space is no stranger to technology. Over the last decade, countless tech-based solutions that improve all facets of HR have been developed, deployed and utilized by businesses across the globe.
Read: The rise of HR technologies
One area of HR in particular that has been receiving plenty of tech attention of late is the recruitment and interview process.
Traditionally, there has been an expectation that recruitment must have a strong interactive element to it in order to be effective.
While the initial analysis of a candidate may have be done remotely, recruiters and decision makers have been known to make their final call based on body language, conversation flow and the ‘gut instincts’ they feel when meeting the candidate in person.
Read: How to test for logical reasoning in an interview
However, thanks to the incredible advancements of technology, making recruitment decisions without shaking hands isn’t only doable, but has its advantages.
For example, AI-based interview platforms are becoming one of the most trusted ways for recruiters to make unbiased decisions about candidates. The platforms use machine-learning algorithms that help make the interview process much more about relevant skills and capabilities, rather than backgrounds and assumptions. These interviews are held via video and are completely location agnostic – making them a perfect fit for the current climate.
Prime time for innovative mindsets
There is no shortage of negativity taking place around the world at the moment, and many business owners are being faced with unforeseen and unthinkable challenges and learning curves.
But, in a time of crisis, there is a unique opportunity to try new things and innovate your way through to the other side.
Coming up with innovative solutions to existing problems is the key to successful leadership. When challenges present themselves to complacent managers, it doesn’t take long for them to raise their arms up in despair and write the situation off entirely.
Read: Management versus leadership – bringing out the best in your employees
Forward thinking and entrepreneurial managers, however, face these challenges head on and look for innovative and out of the box ways to solve ongoing problems.
Whether it be adjusting position descriptions so they handle flexible and volatile circumstances, or trying new tech-based systems that always seemed unnecessary or over the top – the way to bring on new employees during a time like this is by bringing them into an environment that is infused with innovation and the readiness to venture into unchartered territory.