Talent Acquisition

The Best Talent Acquisition Strategies for 2023

Why are so many organizations continuing to handle employee recruitment like it’s an auxiliary cost item to be left to the HR people, when it’s really a core business function with direct links to the profitability and the long-term success of an organization?

The quality of an organization’s talent is the engine that drives its business growth.  Knowing as much, we are suddenly faced with a critical need to modernize our talent acquisition strategies to fit the current job market.  Organizations that still aren’t giving their HR professionals a seat at the decision-making table are simply installing unnecessary barriers to their organizational growth and profitability.  In fact, one out of three business leaders in the U.S. will tell you that the lack of talent in their existing workforce is what’s currently stalling the growth of their company.  

That’s not all.  Making talent acquisition even more challenging is this historic quitting spree, dubbed the “Great Resignation” - seemingly brought on by a sudden and widespread desire for better compensation and more job flexibility.  A staggering number of 75.5 million people told their employers to “take this job and shove it” last year, and that’s just in America alone.

Welcome to what a real job seekers market looks like – a market where candidates have extraordinary negotiation power and where candidates are suddenly reconsidering what their professions mean to them on the deeper level, even having the gumption to up and leave what may appear to be a perfectly comfortable employment situation if they have a mind to do so. 

Understanding Talent Acquisition

Talent acquisition strategies have been in a constant state of flux over the past 18 months as every industry clings desperately to its talents, but the definition remains largely the same.  While recruitment is chiefly defined as any effort to rapidly fill a vacancy, talent acquisition merits a broader definition.  Talent acquisition is best defined as a strategic effort to attract uniquely talented candidates that are capable of filling key roles in an organization.  Talent acquisition strategies target candidates that demonstrate an ability to apply their skills in a way that contributes to the growth, profitability, and success of an organization in the long term.  

To understand talent acquisition as it applies to the current job market, we need to concede that, for now, much of the power rests with the candidate.

Another alarming factor - one out of every five employees will be looking for greener pastures at some point in the coming year.  Let that sink in.  Their first move will be to go to current employers with new requests, like working remotely or more money.  Either employers will be receptive to these requests from their existing employees, or they’ll experience higher turnover rates in the coming months.  It’s that simple.

That’s because, in a sense, the “Great Resignation” represents a revolution.  The best candidates want to be courted and know they can negotiate from a position of power in terms of asking for working conditions and the type of benefits package one would’ve only seen in Silicon Valley just a few years ago.  

Fortunately, talent acquisition strategies are evolving so you can use the ones mentioned below to successfully attract talent in a job market where candidate expectations have reached an all-time high, and where candidates are content to simply wait on the right company to meet their needs rather than taking the first offer that comes in.

Strategy #1: Build your Employer Branding

Being able to attract the best candidates is directly linked to how favorably your organization’s brand is perceived, particularly online.  This is especially true for organizations trying to attract the younger generations.  Millennials and Gen Z candidates are more interested in exploring employment opportunities with brands that they are familiar with.  In fact, 8 out of 10 Gen Z candidates have expressed an interest in following more brands on social media sites, including LinkedIn

A company with a reputation for being a great place to work and where people can accelerate in their careers is a successful talent acquisition strategy in itself.  Always anticipate that the best candidates will research your organization online, and make sure your organization is using social media to promote a positive work culture.  An organization’s employees should be encouraged to interact with their company’s content by leaving comments on posts and sharing their content of their own.  Using videos and images of employees at work (or working from home) is an authentic way of showing the human side of an organization and it can be a remarkably effective talent acquisition strategy

In fact, a powerful and positive brand can even reduce hiring expenses.

Strategy #2: Prove that Your Organization Understands the Younger Generations

Those organizations that can show they understand the younger generations are the best positioned for achieving long-term growth and success.  This is especially true considering that, by 2025, Gen Z will represent 27% of the global workforce.  It’s that simple.  

Millennials (ages 25-40) and Gen Z workers (ages of 18-24) are the first generations that are, essentially, global – especially Gen Z candidates.  Their connections with the world are achieved through digital means and they are heavily engaged in social media.  Yet many organizations still claim to have difficulty recruiting younger workers because they view these candidates, especially Gen Z candidates, as an enigma or as a riddle to be solved.  That’s a shame because the fastest growing and most innovative companies have built up a preference for drawing on the skills and ambitions of this new and younger segment of the workforce by showing that they do understand their needs.

The younger generation of employees entering the workforce are wildly different from the previous generations, but there shouldn’t be any mystery in terms of attracting the best of them because their expectations are very clear.

To attract younger workers, your talent acquisition strategies need to account for the following:

  • They prefer to work from home (at least, on occasion) or wherever is comfortable
  • Diversity and inclusion are a priority
  • Your organization should promote a work/life balance that is healthy
  • Social responsibility on equality, inclusivity, and environmental issues are key

The Gen Z segment is poised to become the most dominant force in the workplace and the time to demonstrate that you understand their nuances and values is now.  Organizations that don’t will get left behind in the race for talent.

Strategy #3: Practice Recruitment Transparency

Your first point of contact with a candidate is likely to take place online.  From that point on, it is incumbent on the employer to set a positive example of what candidates should expect from this new relationship.  Prospective employees have long been reporting that they would like to see a more empathetic response from employers once they apply for a job.  Even as far back as 2020, almost 70% of the global applicant pool was saying that employer responses were the main thing about the hiring process they would like to see improved.

Recruitment transparency lays a solid foundation for these new candidate relationships by keeping them constantly informed about the hiring steps, and it reduces their anxieties by letting them know where they are in the hiring process.  Ultimately, by practicing transparency, your candidates will feel that you respect them and are likely to reward this respect with candid feedback of their own.  

Adopt a practice of posting your organization’s stance on diversity, the hiring of relatives, and the fact that your organization wants to give existing employees first dibs on an open role. This type of transparency is (for now) rather rare and gives external candidates an inside glimpse of organizational culture.  People are more willing to approach what they feel they are familiar with, and employment is no different.

Strategy #4: Build the Employee Experience

The best candidates are also well-informed candidates, and modern talent acquisition strategies need to acknowledge that candidates have higher expectations now than they had just a few years ago.  But let’s pause for a moment to define what we mean by “candidate experience,” which is, essentially, any number of interactions a candidate has with a recruiter (or software) during the recruitment, hiring, and selection processes.

Being proactive in communicating with every candidate in an applicant pool, and throughout each step of the recruitment process, is how organizations are building a more positive candidate experience, and it is an excellent strategy for yielding more qualified applicants.  In fact, 54% of Gen Z candidates won’t even bother to apply if an organization’s application methods seem outdated.  There is a rapid adoption of HR technology happening across a wide array of industries to make application processes more mobile-friendly, since most younger candidates won’t apply if they can’t use their smartphones.

There have been remarkable innovations in HR technology recently that allow organizations to build more engaging and positive candidate experiences, and many of them are using artificial intelligence (AI) and other technical means to not only keep their candidates informed but also to empower candidates to take more control over the hiring process, such as being able to schedule their own interviews, etc. 

When you effectively communicate with candidates throughout each step of the recruitment process and you engage them in those processes by giving them options to, for example, interview remotely and allowing them to self-schedule for interviews, they are considerably more likely to have a positive experience with your company.

Strategy #5: Employee Retention

In this highly competitive job market, organizations are clinging to their talent as desperately as ever.  And why not, losing employees means more costly efforts and spent resources to find and hire replacements.

HR professionals and organizations are increasingly putting resources in their employee retention efforts and using it as a talent acquisition strategy.  Frankly, those that aren’t willing to engage with their employees in new ways or aren’t willing to listen to their request for new benefits, like working remotely, are increasingly likely to see higher rates of employee turnover.

In the coming year, organizations need to go beyond creating a positive office environment and ensure their employees that they have their best interests at heart, making them, perhaps for the first time, feel seen, heard, and valued by organizational leadership.  

Employees who feel they’re being set up to succeed in their existing roles are likely to grow into a positive, energizing workforce for an organization.

Strategy #6: Adopting a Hybrid Workforce Environment

As the world moves past the pandemic, some organizational leaders are hoping for a gradual return to the traditional 9-5 office environment where everyone comes to the office – they’re likely to be disappointed with the results.

COVID demonstrated a new way of working productively, and it eliminated the need to be tied to a desk.  In fact, of all the trends sparked by the pandemic, the hybrid workforce model is one that is expected to be a long-term change for many organizations.

And it’s a change that can be remarkably effective in boosting the results of your talent acquisition strategies.  Candidates’ interest in finding remote work has accelerated a mind-boggling 460% between June 2019 and June 2021.  The best candidates want the option to work remotely, so make it a component of your talent acquisition strategy.

Simply stated, organizations that are willing to adopt a hybrid workforce are going to have better success recruiting higher-quality candidates than the organizations that choose not to, especially in this kind of job market.  Organizations that insist on clinging to the pre-pandemic tradition of requiring all employees to work from the office are simply going to run into trouble attracting good talent.  The best candidates want flexibility, and offering them an opportunity to work remotely is a huge incentive.

In fact, reports show that most professional recruiters believe that their organizations are at a liability of losing the best of their existing roster of employees if they don’t soon adopt a hybrid workforce model.

Strategy #7: Promote Upskilling

The Great Resignation has shown organizations that their employees desire more development opportunities.  They want to work towards certifications and credentials that will give them more earning potential and upward mobility.  These upskilling programs give employees peace of mind knowing their future is being considered by their current employers.  Organizations that have adopted the practice of upskilling their workforce should promote the fact on LinkedIn and other social media sites because of how well these posts can help organizations to attract new talent. 

Upskilling has evolved to include those important “soft skills” like interpersonal communication and empathy-building skills that are so noticeably lacking in our existing workforce, and it is one of the newest methods that recruiters are using to prompt candidates to give their organization a serious look.  Using a talent acquisition strategy that promotes your willingness to make direct investments in your workforce shows a commitment to employee growth and can help organizations build a great reputation online.

Strategy #8: Embrace Technology (and Promote it!)

Speed and agility have become the marquee advantages to recruiting successfully in this job market.  As organizations struggle to keep up with the breakneck pace to find the right candidates amidst “the Great Resignation,” they’re increasingly turning to innovations in HR technology to achieve the speed and agility they need to compete.  For many organizations, their recent history of adoption of these new technologies has been so successful that they now consider technology to be their competitive advantage.  To compete for the best talent in what is most decidedly a job seeker’s market, these technologies are proving to be very effective in accelerating and improving both recruitment results, and they are also helping to automate many of the HR processes that run in the background. 

The most time-consuming component of the recruitment process is having to screen resumes.  Talent acquisition strategies married with the right technology can give an organization the capability to reach five or even ten times the amount of candidates they would ordinarily each using traditional methods of recruitment, and still be able to effectively screen them in half the time. 

Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) have been around since the nineties, and whereas they were originally designed as a repository for applicant data, they have evolved significantly and now come with advanced technology that lend enormous support to an organization's talent acquisition strategies.

Manatal ~ The Best SaaS Platform for Your Talent Acquisition Strategies

In modern society, advancements in innovative HR technologies are rapidly becoming the foundation for many successful talent acquisition strategies, and, in many cases, they serve to accelerate their effectiveness. Manatal is trusted by customers from more than 130 countries for innovative solutions to the world’s most perplexing recruitment challenges, with a SaaS platform that makes the entire recruitment process simple and enjoyable for recruiters and candidates alike.  

Of all the ways an organization can use Manatal’s platform to augment their talent acquisition strategies, the intuitive AI technology is where the company truly stands apart from the competition.  With Manatal’s impressive AI and machine learning capabilities, the results of an organization’s talent acquisition strategies can be remarkably more successful.

Manatal – Free Trial & Free Demo

To see for yourself just how supportive Manatal’s AI-powered SaaS platform can be for your talent acquisition strategies, the company is now offering a free trial of their ATS software via their website, or you can also book a demo with one of the professionals who can share specifically how the Manatal platform can work with your talent acquisition plans for 2023.  

Clearly, the “Great Resignation” has upended traditional recruitment acquisition strategies, and organizations are discovering that what worked yesterday is no longer reliable, especially as society goes increasingly more digital and mobile. For the first time in history, we are seeing talent acquisition strategies being fitted to modern society by placing employee benefits and perks at the front end of the recruitment process, and it’s yielding remarkable results in this difficult job market.

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