Key Questions for Recruitment Teams to Answer in 2021

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David Rice
02/03/2021

recruiters 2021

Recruiting in 2021 is growing in complexity as employee expectations change and work models continue to evolve following the success of the forced shift to remote work.

As companies begin to move past the pandemic, they’ll do well to not forget the things that have made hiring efforts more effective in the remote world. As Criteria’s 2020 Hiring Benchmark Report notes, use of video interviewing increased 159% over the last year among managers in the U.S., Canada and Australia.

That is no small trend and it’s something that has been met positively by candidates looking to join organizations. The way that company goals and next steps are communicated and transitioned to onboarding processes, how companies manage to show their humanity in digital environments and how smooth of a process they create for hiring in a remote world will impact their ability to hire and retain the best talent.

In a world where 76% of employers expect hiring to surpass pre-pandemic levels in 2021, a majority of candidates want to continue working remotely. That’s not necessarily a bad thing as workforces no longer are bound by geography, but therein lies a challenge ahead for recruiters.

With that in mind, here are some key questions recruitment teams have to ask themselves and find answers for in order to find the people they need in 2021.

What is Your Experience?

As previously mentioned, video interviews are up and so is the use of new screening technology and candidate feedback surveys. But the candidate experience starts with where they find you, which is why it’s important to optimize the application experience from the locations where a job listing can be found. Use career sites that make it easy for candidates, with straightforward processes and a website that is fast and easy to navigate.

Once they have expressed interest and you have identified someone as a candidate, regular communication through channels they feel comfortable with will help keep them engaged with the opportunity. Provide supplemental materials on what it’s like to work for the company and conduct your follow up processes in a manner that reflects the professional nature of your organization.

Interviews should fit into their schedule and provide them with an opportunity to meet not only future superiors, but also potential colleagues. The view into who they’ll be working with and what their experiences are is incredibly valuable to a candidate and will show that the company is proud of the employee experience they offer.

Is Diversity Reflected in Leadership?

More than ever, people are in search of credibility on diversity and inclusion. The business case for D&I is clear in terms of its impact on creativity, productivity and profitability, but if diversity is not reflected in leadership, it may be more difficult to convince diverse candidates to join the company. Many companies are still overseen by majority white, majority male executive boards and a lack of diverse representation at the highest levels of the organization may be seen as indicative of the true culture of the organization.

As C-Suite turnover has increased during the pandemic, there has never been a better time to ensure that bias is eliminated in the recruitment process and diversity is being represented at board level all the way through management and entry level staff. Anything less will be recognized by employees as a failure to meet a modern standard for diversity and inclusion and candidates will look to find a company that reflects their ideals around this social issues.

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How are You Using Social Media?

Social media can be a powerful tool for employer branding, but beyond that, it’s become valuable in the recruiting process as well. You can use it to get openings in front of specific candidates simply by participating in the right conversations. For example, if you want to hire a developer in the Houston Texas area, you’d want to post your position with a hashtag relevant to that audience, such as #devjobs and #houstonjobs.

On LinkedIn, search for communities that speak to the niche you’re looking to hire for. Need a content person? Post a position in a group specific to content marketing or journalists.

In addition to this, you’ll want to post your own content regularly focused on your employees and culture. Showing the character of the organization and encouraging your current staff to help out can go a long way. And finally, your recruitment team itself should have a significant social media presence in order to build a reputation with recruits that will encourage them to make person-to-person contact through that platform.

What Does Your Post-Pandemic Workplace Look Like?

According to research from Gallup, around two-thirds of people currently working remotely want to continue working that way. For all the horrors of the pandemic, it has also shown people what they can achieve without commuting and how they can balance their lives with work in a remote setting. As you’ve likely heard by now, there is no going back.

As 2021 continues and vaccines are rolled out in mass numbers, the question many companies are pondering is what does a post pandemic workplace look like? Several say it’s going to be something of a hybrid approach, with employees working remotely part of the time and in physical locations part of the time.

“We’re trying to eliminate the phrase ‘when we come back’ from our language as an executive team,” Rhonda Hall, CHRO at University Federal Credit Union said in an interview the HR Exchange Podcast. “The senior leadership team is working together cross functionally to determine what things look like going forward. Are we going to require everyone to come in five days a week? I don’t think so. Are we going to allow them to work remote 100% of the time? I don’t think so. We’ll be somewhere in the middle.”

What is Your Talent Mobility Strategy?

Professional growth and development is a big concern among candidates as they look for positions which will set them up for the long term future and seek out companies that provide them with a variety of pathways forward. That isn’t always up either.

Career mapping and creating customized journeys that allow employees to shift into different roles and in some cases, even different segments of the industry will go a long way toward making candidates feel like their future is in good hands with your company. Following a year where many were expected to take on new tasks and reach into areas typically outside the realm of their job description, providing ways for employees to become more well-rounded professionals capable of helping the organization in a variety ways is good business that employees appreciate on a personal level.

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