Hurray for spring! A beautiful time of year where everything seems to come to life.

You see a world more colourful. It even smells better. Opportunities abound. 

And not just at home, but at work too.

It’s the first quarter of the new financial year. Over the last 2 months you’ve been handed your budget (one that never arrives on time!) and can now turn towards executing your plans for the year ahead.  

One of the first things you might want to do is hire a new team member. Acting with speed is paramount. The later you leave it, the less likely you’ll get the return you’re expected to deliver.

Problem is, no one applies.

The good news, it’s not just you, other businesses are feeling it too.

This graph explains. During springtime it’s a candidate’s market. There’s plenty of work – job openings are at the highest – but the volume of candidates searching for work is at its lowest.

This analysis, by global jobs site Indeed, of Australian searches shows the seasonality between the supply (of job postings) and demand (of job searches).

As a candidate, you’re more likely to think about looking for a new job in the new year, once bonuses are paid and projects have drawn to a close.

Come January when you’re open to offers, employers have closed shop as it’s the holiday season. Here the market reverses. It’s an employer’s market, with an oversupply of job seekers for fewer jobs listed.

So how as an employer, do you avoid the sting of increased competition when hiring in springtime?

Here’s Four Spring Solutions for Hiring.

Each will breathe new vigour (and rigour) into your hiring process, to avoid the temptation of lowering your (hiring) standards in the face of fierce competition.

Don’t have time? We’ve got you covered, with eleven tech tools to make the process better and faster.

1.Be the Job Post That Stands Out (for the right reasons)

Offering flexible working arrangements is one of the most effective strategies to attract and retain talent.

With 96% of employees wanting flexibility yet only 47% having access, employers have a great opportunity to stand out.

See the number of applicants swell when you offer flexible working options in your job post.

Go a step further. Advertising directly to job seekers who are specifically seeking flexibility.   Here are a range of job boards with a pool of talent committed to working flexibly. 

Flex job boards – 

  • Puffling– offers a community of talent open to job-share, contract, part-time and full-time flex roles. Great if you have senior roles to fill.
  • FlexCareers– a great option with more than 120,000 job seekers wanting flexible work 
  • Beam– yet another way to access flexible talent

Candidates are seeking employers that care about the same things

67% ofactive and passive job seekers are shopping for companies that can demonstrate their commitment to diversity & inclusion. 

Yet another opportunity to stand out in a crowded marketplace. Show off your commitment to diversity and inclusion through your policies and procedures, your above the norm commitment to paid parental leave, openness towards flexibility, diversity of your workforce and more!

Before advertising on the WORK180 job board you’ll be asked to successfully complete an online audit of your progress towards diversity and inclusion. This gets published so applicants registered can decide if you’re the sort of company they want to work for.

2. Attract More Applicants by Changing the Language in Job Postings

By improving the language and words used in job postings and job descriptions you stand a much better chance of attracting a larger and broader talent pool.

We know that otherwise qualified and suitable women are less likely to apply to job posts where they feel they are unlikely to fit in.

Try the free *Gender Decoder to help you identify words commonly used in job postings that turn women off.

Here’s how it works.

Another solution is *Textio, an augmented AI (Artificial Intelligence) writing tool, which highlights words and phrases less likely to attract talent and provides suggested changes. This tool costs but you can try it out for free.

*Disclaimer, unlike all the other tools mentioned in this article, neither of these are Australian innovations. However, they make a sizeable impact and will benefit Australian companies looking to improve their hiring outcomes.

3. Don’t Fish in a Pond, Fish in a River – Diverse Candidates will Open up your Talent Pool

Rather than advertising your job posts on the same job boards and getting the same poor response, consider these options which will give you the added benefit of diversifying your workforce.

  • Olderworkers – job board has over 55,000 registered mature age jobseekers ready to work 
  • LGBTI jobs– allows employers to connect with the LGBTI community looking for work
  • Refugee talent– matches refugees with employers

4. Don’t Lower your Standards, just because Competition is High with Fewer Candidates.

It’ll cost 2.5x the salary if you make a hiring mistake. Can you really afford to compromise on a quality recruitment process just to put a bum on a seat?

This applies anytime of the year, but there’s more reasons to get it right when competition is tough because of the increased chance of getting it wrong. Don’t be tempted into thinking it is better to take any candidate than none. 

With 8 out of 10 hiring decisions impacted by unconscious bias, i.e. based on how well a candidate is perceived to fit in rather than how well they can do the job, there’s ample room for improvement.

An objective, data-driven assessment process designed around comparing and ranking candidate capability is critical. One where candidates can show you how capable they are rather than solely relying on CV’s notoriously bad for screening candidates.

Here are two tools to help.

  • Vervoe is an AI powered skill testing tool, providing an objective assessment of a   candidate’s ability to perform the role. In effect substituting the inferior but traditional CV screening process. The effect is to hire on merit not background, at scale. It takes the pressure off hiring teams as the entire process is automated. The assessments are automatically generated and scored. 

If you’re looking for an end-to-end recruitment tool that not only removes bias from the screening process but also the interview process then here’s another option.

  • RemiPeople is an online tool that applies the science of behavioural economics to create a series of nudges to strip bias from each stage of the recruitment process. Unconscious bias is the number one problem that interferes with quality hiring decision making. RemiPeople applies ten (10) proven debiasing techniques to the recruitment process. Trying to manually implement each of these techniques would put onerous burden on already stretched workplaces and they simply wouldn’t do it. By digitising an evidence based de-biased hiring process, RemiPeople offers workplaces an accessible web application to find quality and diverse employees quicker.

If you’re an employer happy to leave jobs unfilled or not interested in hiring employees that’ll give your business the edge, then these tools aren’t for you. If you have a vacancy that you want to fill now and care about achieving your goals through great people, then this is for you. 

Which tools will help you most avoid the sting of hiring in springtime?

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