How to Attract and Recruit Today's Technical Talent

11 March 2019

Whether it’s Millennials or Generation Z, it seems that candidate attitudes and values are one of the major barriers to recruitment. 

Evidence from our own recruitment process suggests that technical candidates know what their skills are worth, or even over estimate their market value. We advise and prepare candidates for the realities of the market. Most of our SME clients do not have the time or resources to reach candidates on this level until interview stage, which can often be too late. We find that clients who are proactive with their candidate attraction can save massive amounts of time later in the recruitment process.

 

HOW CAN YOU ATTRACT CANDIDATES WHEN THEIR VIEWS, VALUES AND NEEDS CAN BE SO DIFFERENT?

We could separate each generation and attempt to attract them individually but in our engineering and technical team we take a broader view. We believe that if the company and role are right for a certain candidate and you have promoted and advertised them correctly, the rest takes care of itself.

 

WHY DO TODAY’S CANDIDATES TEND TO TURN DOWN OFFERS OR TAKE COUNTER OFFERS?

Again, we could go into the specifics of each generation’s salary expectations and hunger for progression, but we believe that candidates who are likely to turn down or take counter offers, should never have been progressed to interview or offer stage in the first place. We should take the time to learn our candidate’s motivations and requirements after meeting them, allowing us to focus only on the positions that they are highly likely to accept. We understand that this can sometimes be challenging for companies to achieve but again, a little time spent at the front end of the process can save a lot of time at the finish.

 

HOW DO WE ACHIEVE ALL THIS, PRACTICALLY?

Example

Client A, a Civil Engineering Consultancy was struggling to attract Civil Design Technicians as it seemed that five or six of their rivals were also advertising similar roles at the same time. Each time they managed to attract a candidate through their regular advertising they were lost between setting up the first interview and offer stage. The candidates were telling the firm that they had not only been in with their rivals but had also received a better offer. 

The natural reaction was to blame the size of the salary the other firms offered and move on to further advertising. 

When the Client reached out to our Engineering and Technical team, we were delighted to help. Our approach was to think less about the candidates who were originally in process and more about the candidates who had never applied to any of the six or seven companies in the first place. It didn’t matter which generational group these candidates were from, we were going to attempt to attract them all through a series of methods: 

Direct Approach: Our first approach is always to our database of candidates, but putting that aside, as most firms don’t have access to one, we considered all of the online platforms candidates may use including: LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Engineering magazines, University Jobs boards, Snapchat, Pinterest etc. Where possible, direct approaches were made, and suitable candidates were brought in to meet with the team. This approach tends to work for candidates who use their media platforms to network and not simply browse. 

Attraction Methods: It can be key to choose the right day and time to use each method, as well as the right online platform. Apart from the usual posting of ads with eye catching pictures, we find that a large proportion of candidates like to gain most of the information on a firm or role straight away. This led us to construct a job specific video with a personal touch, to go out in the evening when candidates usually browse. All of the methods of attraction led back to a quick and easy application link. 

These processes delivered 10 brand new candidates, five of which were perfectly skilled and experienced for the role. Four candidates had remarked that they had seen the previous job postings from the firms, however they had not been interested enough to apply. They were keen on a firm who had tried an innovative new approach to recruiting as this was the type of firm that would suit their own values and needs. All candidates thought that a firm seemed more personal and trustworthy when they were able to see an actual person describing the role. 

Client A had been recruiting for the role for two to three months and now it had been filled in just eight days from initial video to offer. 

This is a snapshot of how technology and candidate attraction ideas can build a brand-new candidate pool for firms struggling to recruit. The main additional success factor we find is consistency. If you don’t take the time to consistently try new approaches, you will consistently struggle to recruit. 

If you would like to know more about MCS Group, are looking for recruitment advice or would like to discuss your recruitment needs, please contact us on 028 9023 5456 or email belfast@mcsgroup.jobs


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