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The secret to hiring and retaining the best talent

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The secret to hiring and retaining the best talent

Your job isn’t over when you find and recruit top talent.

It’s challenging.

As a HR professional, you have to attract the right talent, nurture your people and help them grow into a role. And you need to do it in such a way that your business benefits.

The problem is you face stiff competition from other companies who are also looking to recruit the best talent from a challenging job market and even from inside of your company.

So, how can you find and retain the best talent, help them succeed at their jobs and keep your company thriving?

Getting recruiting right 

According to a 2015 LinkedIn worldwide survey of HR professionals, the three biggest obstacles for attracting top talent are: finding candidates in a high-demand job pool, agreeing on compensation and facing competition from employers.

If you want to overcome these obstacles, know that attracting the right talent starts before you conduct your first interview or even place a discovery call.

It starts with communicating to the job market what your company wants… and what it will offer talented employees.

“Increasingly people are less compelled simply by financial reward and are seeking other things as well,” says Jon Ingham, strategic HR consultant and author of Strategic Human Capital Management. “It’s that total reward proposition that needs to come across.”

It’s about understanding how people work best. So, factors such as flexible working, professional development or an appreciative environment, can be highly influential in a candidate’s decision-making process.

Competing on talent

Many HR managers and directors worry about competing with other companies for top talent and wonder if they can recruit someone without breaking the bank.

So, what should you do?

“Try not to compete,” advises Ingham. “Firstly, that’s expensive and secondly it doesn’t really help you retain people.”

“If people only join [a business] because you’ve offered a higher salary than a competitor, they won’t stay for long. Eventually, someone will offer them a higher salary.”

If you’re concerned about what your competitors are offering, you’ll stand a far better chance of attracting top talent if you and your business communicates clearly why you’re an attractive employer.

“An innovative reward proposition can be part of showing [talent] that [a business is] thinking differently,” says Ingham. “If you do that smartly, very often the type of people you want will be different to the type of people your competitors want.”

Onboarding your new employees

Your job doesn’t end once a talented candidate finally signs a contract. To justify the investment of time and resources, it’s vital that top talent commits to your business. As an employer, this requires a proactive approach.

Jon recommends HR managers and directors who want to increase retention should prioritize enabling new talent to build relationships with colleagues.

“One of the things many [HR professionals] forget is the team-based element of an organization,” he says.

“If you can help people form those relationships firstly you can help them perform effectively. Secondly, you will directly reduce retention because you have given them a social network in the workplace as well.”

Once people feel welcome in your business and part of a team, they’re less likely to leave because of conflict or because of  your business’s management style.

“People join organizations [but they] leave people,” says Jon. “It’s not just about a manager relationship, it’s about relationships with lots of people in the business.”

Growing new recruits into super star performers

Companies who offer opportunities for professional development will naturally attract talented employees, as will those HR managers who go the extra distance to help new hires grow professionally within their roles.

So, how can you help new talent succeed and contribute to your business’s bottom-line? “A lot of smart organizations are redefining recruitment from getting somebody into the organization to [hiring] somebody who is performing in their job,” says Ingham.

You can help talent in their jobs by providing 360-degree feedback, graduate development program, courses and external institutions and even cross-functional project assignments.

“It’s not just about coming in on that first day into the office and doing an induction program. [Talented employees] are getting ongoing coaching and mentoring within that first six months,” says Jon.

The secrets to success

You don’t need superpowers to succeed as a HR professional.

Start by communicating clearly to the jobs market what your company offers and how you stand apart from your competitors. This will help you avoid competing directly with others and reduce the costs associated with talent recruitment.

Once the contracts are signed, the real work of on-boarding talent into your company beings.

Then, it’s up to you as a smart HR professional to ensure new recruits feel welcome and valued and that they have what they need a week, a month and a year into their role. Because the secret to your success lies in the hands of your company’s best people.

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