Hiring before the end of the year? Here's what to keep in mind.
Whether you need to fill open positions before the holiday break, or you’re looking ahead to hiring right in the New Year, it’s never been more important to have solid recruiting and hiring processes in place.
Competition for talent remains fierce, with demand for workers continuing to outweigh the number of job seekers on the market today. For employers already struggling to fill positions, neglecting the recruiting process for even a few weeks could mean falling months behind in the quest to attract skilled workers.
Putting the right people in the right seats is a time-consuming process that takes skill and recruiting expertise. Most positions take a minimum of eight weeks to fill in the best of times, while others can take three to six months. Without the right elements in place so you can hire fast and effectively, your business could be losing valuable candidates to other offers.
With this in mind, here are five end-of-year hiring tips to set your business up for success in the New Year.
Five essential steps for end-of-year hiring success
1. Make a plan
To achieve successful recruiting and hiring outcomes, it’s necessary to plan ahead so you can avoid rushing and making a bad hire. Before you skip directly to the hiring process, develop a staffing plan that includes a list of future hiring needs, the dates they need to begin, and how long you think it will take to fill each position. This will allow you to work backwards and realistically know if you’ll be able to meet your end-of-year hiring deadline — or if it’s more reasonable to expect to fill the position in January or beyond.
2. Adjust your compensation
Employees increasingly desire positions that offer flexibility and a positive company culture, but compensation is still a top priority. If you aren’t putting your best foot forward with your pay and benefits, you could be losing the war for talent.
There are three basic steps to ensuring your employee compensation is competitive and fair:
Conduct a job market analysis - A market analysis will tell you the current market value of your positions so you can determine if the pay you’re offering falls above the average market rate, at market rate, or below the market rate for similar jobs. (Tip: determining market rate is time consuming and difficult to accomplish, so hiring an HR expert can save you time and money in the long run.)
Audit your pay structure - Conduct a pay equity review to find out if you’re paying too much, or too little, for each role — either within your own organization or compared to other similar roles in your industry. Even if a pay disparity is an oversight, your business is still vulnerable to fines and discrimination lawsuits if you’re not in compliance with equal pay laws.
Enhance your benefit offerings - When a top candidate compares job offers from different employers, a superior benefits package that goes beyond the basics may give your business the competitive edge. To maximize your end–of-year hiring budget, consider offering non-cash benefits like flexible work arrangements and employee development opportunities.
3. Advertise right
Take the time to create attention-grabbing job descriptions that include a brief overview of each role, key responsibilities and qualifications, and how it contributes to your organization’s vision and mission. An ideal description should showcase your organization’s benefits, culture, and uniqueness to spark interest and separate yourself from the competition, while maintaining accuracy and compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
Then, to reach a pool of the best candidates, advertise your positions through a variety of channels, including:
Your company careers page
Major online job boards
Industry-specific job boards
Your professional network
4. Fine-tune your hiring process
If you don’t have a standardized recruiting and hiring process, or it just isn’t providing the results you desire, the end of the year is the ideal time to improve your approach. Key elements of an effective recruiting and hiring process include:
Qualifying standards - Boxes each applicant must tick to move forward in the hiring process, helping to narrow down your applicant pool to only the most qualified candidates
A compelling recruiting pitch - How you communicate your company’s special attributes and offerings to a potential job candidate
Standard interview questions - Questions that screen for specific successful behaviors, demonstrate fair and consistent hiring practices, and enable hiring managers of any experience level to more effectively interview and select the best candidates
Employee assessments - Pre-employment testing that measures technical skills and cognitive ability, as well as behavior, temperament, and personality traits
Clearly defined interview steps - Standardized, repeatable steps (for example: screening interviews, hiring manager interviews, and a final round of in-person panel interviews) that will set you up for success throughout the year
5. Use technology
End-of-year hiring right involves many moving parts — but the good news is, you don’t have to keep track of it all manually. An applicant tracking system (ATS) will allow your business to efficiently collect and filter applicant information, organizing job candidates based on essential qualifications such as experience and skill set. And since most payroll software systems offer an ATS option, you don’t have to invest in a costly new system to speed up your end-of-year hiring.
Hiring before the end of the year? We’ll help you hire fast so you can focus on running your business.
Our team of expert HR Advisors employ proven recruiting strategies for sourcing and vetting top talent to put the right people in the right seats, faster. We’ll handle the whole process for you so you can confidently grow your business with high-performance new hires.