Any business hiring today has to learn how to compete in an employment market that is fiercely competitive and challenging. Thanks to a number of factors related to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are experiencing record labor shortages, with many potential employees opting to retire early, strike out as freelancers, or seek out alternative employment arrangements. It’s harder than ever for employers to find and keep quality, talented candidates. Without the right talent, companies will struggle to innovate and lead in their respective industries, and more and more of their long-term employees will jump ship in favor of newer, flashier opportunities. For these reasons, building a sustainable talent pipeline is crucial, even as it may be all the more difficult during this challenging labor market.
Why build a sustainable talent pipeline?
A sustainable talent pipeline means that companies can quickly and efficiently fill vacancies with relevant hires, keeping disruption in operations limited, even when experiencing higher rates of turnover. When you hire well, candidates don’t leave as frequently, which further strengthens the longevity and productivity of your workforce as a whole. No company can succeed on a large scale without a serious strategy for finding and maintaining their talent.
What makes a sustainable talent pipeline?
Though during this unprecedented labor shortage it can be tempting to try to solve your staffing shortages with short-term fixes, what you really need as a long-term, predictable plan. No short-term plan or a single good hire can make up for a lack of strategy in the long run. In order to build a pipeline of talent that is constantly providing your organization with new qualified candidates, your team will need to invest the time and resources into creating a sustainable, self renewing strategy for finding new hires year after year.
Companies are finally waking up to the fact that employee diversity is both a positive contribution to workplace culture and a necessity. But building a diverse workforce doesn’t happen overnight, and hiring the occasional candidate with a different background can’t account for a massive lack of diversity in your organization overall. It’s an ongoing process that needs continuous attention and, as previously stated, a concerted intentional plan for both attracting diverse hires, and creating an environment in which those people feel comfortable and happy working. No one wants to be the token diverse team member. Put some time and effort into making sure that your talent pipeline is attracting candidates from many different backgrounds. By doing so, you can even make it easier to hire in the future by recruiting from a larger pool of candidates, such as non-traditional students, former military service members, and those without a college degree.
Staffing your organization isn’t just a matter of finding interested employees, but also making sure that your candidates are qualified for the position you have vacant. Generally, the more challenging and important the role, the more difficult it can be to find suitable candidates, especially when relying on job search functions like advertising or your corporate social network.
How to build a sustainable talent pipeline
Keep the talent you already have
The best way to find new talent efficiently? Retain and upskill the talent you already have. It sounds trite, but especially in a labor market such as the current one, considerable energy needs to go into maintaining your current workforce. Why? As the market gets more competitive, new employers will offer your employees better perks, higher salaries, and promotions to leave their current positions. If your team has lost a few team members and been unable to replace them, chances are that your remaining team is dealing with a larger-than-usual workload, increasing strain and the likelihood that they’ll jump ship to go somewhere else. But it’s not just these problems that contribute to turnover. Poor management or lack of growth opportunities also lead employees to seek greener pastures.
Make your hiring process candidate-friendly
In today’s competitive market, candidates have the upper hand in negotiations, and often will turn down multiple job offers before finding one that suits them. Companies have to work harder than ever to impress applicants. This means your team may want to take a look at your hiring processes. Are they as candidate-friendly as they could be? Efficiency-focused hiring tools like one-way interviews may be okay in most circumstances, but candidates can find them off-putting, so for the time being, you may want to consider an audit of your hiring process.
Take stock of the employees at your organization that have stuck around for some time and succeeded or been promoted. What qualities do they have in common? Can you identify some common threads? Taking a big-picture view of things can help you identify your priorities so that you know exactly what you’re looking for and where to look for it.
Work with a recruiting firm
Third party recruiters are highly effective at sourcing qualified candidates for organizations of any size. Tech Talent South specializes in placing diverse, qualified tech candidates in entry level tech positions across the country. If you are looking for the perfect tech professional for your business, contact our recruiters today to see how we can help.