Insights into the forces shaping our industry.
Part 1: Branding Your Company to Attract Top Talent
Interviewing isn’t just about bringing a candidate in and asking them questions. It’s an opportunity to sell your brand and company. Eighty four percent of the candidates I placed were employed when I contacted them. Candidates are not actively looking and need to be courted. If you want to attract top talent, you need to have a top notch recruiting process. Here’s how to represent your company:
1. Make sure every interviewer has a strong answer to: why should a candidate quit their job to work for your company? Explain what sets you apart from your competitors. Have your top three candidates speak with a champion or cheerleader of your company; ideally, a long-term employee who’s energetic and enthusiastic. Enthusiasm is infectious!
2. Respond in a timely manner; within 1 – 2 days! The candidate is anxiously awaiting your response the second their resume is sent. Timely schedule interviews, provide candidates feedback, make an offer, etc. Timeliness may be difficult if you are posting jobs on your own and receiving dozens of resumes with irrelevant background; however, when you are working with an industry specific recruiter, such as Egret Consulting, you’re presented 2 – 4 qualified candidates, who have been recruited to your company. You should be able to quickly determine which candidates to move forward. Delays can suggest you’re not serious about filling the position or your company is slow at making decisions. Candidates will assume these delays will carry over as an employee. Candidates are, also, naturally paranoid…delays imply you don’t like their background, or you’re making an offer to someone else and stalling them as a second choice.
3. Carefully plan the face-to-face interview. Ensure the booking process is clear, seamless and the candidate understands who is booking the trip. If the candidate is booking the trip, explain how and when they will be reimbursed (this is especially important for sales people who book travel on a regular basis). If your company is booking the trip, make sure it’s an easy process and is booked in a timely manner. If the trip requires a hotel, house the candidate in a nice, 3+ star hotel. Inform the candidate about the area, suggest places to eat and/or take them out to dinner. If you treat them to dinner, it should be with the person they will report to. If not, choose someone who will be working with them closely. If the position requires relocation, offer to fly out their spouse and let them stay an extra day or 2 to tour the area and look at houses (this can be done in a second interview).
Each part of the recruiting process is a branding opportunity. Every person and meeting is a chance to show how great your company is. People talk if they have a bad experience. You only hire one person, but you want the other candidates to leave with a strong impression of your company; they work in the industry as well!
Stay tuned for part two…
Brooke Ziolo is a contingent and retained executive recruiter working exclusively within the Lighting Industry. To learn more about how she can help your Lighting company, LED company or Lighting Design Firm attract talent, check out her biography, LinkedIn profile or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.