How to Attract the Best Talent in a Competitive Market

Hiring and retaining experienced, culturally-aligned candidates in a competitive market can be tricky, but it's still doable with our helpful tips.

If you haven’t yet hired in 2024 and experienced it for yourself, we’re sure you have heard from colleagues and/or HR about the hundreds of applications they are receiving for advertised job roles. It is easy to see the candidate market is saturated, however this doesn’t necessarily mean those applying for roles have the right experience – numbers sadly don’t always produce quality.

There are small and doable steps you can take to ensure your positions are filled with qualified and motivated candidates.

1. Keep candidates updated

To attract and retain top talent, it is vital you protect your brand image. Bad publicity can spread like wildfire in the digital age we live in and can be detrimental to you securing the right people.

By respecting applicants time and effort in applying for roles, you’re ensuring even if they aren’t successful, they will have a positive view of your company. You don’t need to spend hours calling through, but by sending an email the talent will feel appreciated and will walk away with goodwill. You never know, the people your rejecting now may be future customers, so its important to make them feel valued.

2. Have a streamlined hiring process

Time is the killer of all deals. Top talent is in demand, and by putting them through stage after stage of interview processes you will loose their enthusiasm and likely loose them to another company.

We find that two of the top reasons’ candidates won’t accept a role is a better offer from another company or a long/stagnant interview process. By having a set processes to follow you will ensure that recruitment is quick and efficient, and you aren’t losing great candidates. We would suggest more than two stages isn’t necessary, and more than a week between stages is too long. You could set out time for first and second interview stages at the start of the recruitment process and ensure you keep this time free to speak to candidates to keep the process structured and streamlined.

3. Focus on culture

When looking at millennials, a study by glass door found 77% of workers value company culture over salary. Your culture is the most important thing you can offer a candidate. In the first instance this means ensuring you have a strong and stable culture with clear values and ethics. You also need to ensure you are reflecting your company culture throughout the interview process and in onboarding. 

This can’t be faked, so make sure you are representing culture in all candidate interactions. You also want to make sure they align with your company culture, as if not they’re likely to drop out very quickly and put you back at square one.

4. Demonstrate your company diversity

Your company’s commitment to diversity will engage younger professionals. 

By representing different ages, cultures and ethnicities within your team a candidate is more likely to feel they’re walking into an inclusive environment where they will be treated fairly. There are great companies and initiatives that can help with diversity within the work force including Babassa for Creative industries or Women in Tech for Technical Industries , alongside many others.


5. Get creative with your benefits & incentives

As mentioned above, in todays job market salary is no longer the most important factor in candidates choosing to start a role. Alongside culture and diversity, benefits are important in reeling in great talent. In candidates we’ve have spoken to, over half would outline flexibility in terms of hours and working from home as the best benefit they could be offered. During COVID we have all had to revaluate being in the office, so why not look at what you can do around working hours. 

After flexible hours and locations top talent is looking for advancement and development, so having L&D plans in place for new starters and for specific roles will help in attraction.

 Great talent is out there, but it’s up to you to find it. The above guidelines will hopefully aid you in attracting the right people for your business. Should you have any questions on how to do any of the above points, please get in touch.

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Signature Recruitment are delighted to announce that we are finalists for the 2021 Dragon Awards – Celebrating our social impact in London communities

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