A company’s culture can be the make or break when it comes to talent acquisition. When job-seekers get a taste of your culture it will either endear them to you or see them say, “thanks but no thanks”.  And before you say I’m a small business owner, this doesn’t apply. It does.

Consider, what it is that will get your candidate over the line?

Is it the role and responsibilities?  No, this can be replicated in other companies. Your brand? Yes, as a large organisation but difficult as a small player. It isn’t necessarily the money as this has been falling down the list of priorities for job-seekers. It could be working arrangements as flexibility is high on the agenda for employees today.

Categorically, however, it comes down to who you are, what you stand for, where you want to head and what you value as the definitive factors that will see your candidates gain interest and buy-in to your organisation.

With or without a strategy division, every company owner or director should look at these elements as the basics to attract interest.

Once developed, you will present these aspects often in sourcing strategies, advertisements, throughout the interview and then reinforce them as often as you can with your staff members.

Let’s break this down…

  1. Vision

What is your aim? Where are you headed? Where do you see your business in 3-5 years?

Did you know “progression” is one of the most attractive and redeeming features that gets attention from an audience? People like to see moves, changes, innovation, development, diversification, innovation.

If you are struggling with your vision, put yourself or your company in the light of looking back on it three to five years from now. What would you be proud of the company being in this time?

Write it down as a statement. “Company name is a [insert your business nature] and will be seen as x in the market in providing, delivering y” or similar. It doesn’t have to be rocket science but put a sentence or two down that you can quickly recall.

  1. What are you about?

What solution are you delivering, what problem are you fixing, who are you helping and how? If you can snapshot this it will help you nail a lot of the people aspects.

Think of the opening paragraph to your job ad, the opening remarks in an employee handbook or induction pack, further training and development. It will all come down to the essence of what your business does.

  1. Values

What do you value? Normally you should have no more than 5 key values. Put some consideration here. Beware of motherhood words such as trust, respect, honesty, integrity… yes these are attractive words but many people have different perceptions of the words. Make them behaviours with a subtext that represents the value in action. For example, Trust – We believe the best in people and will be accountable for our actions.

The key is to ensure these are living and breathing in an organisation day by day. Have reminders in place for “this is the way we do things around here”.  Ensure people get recognised for upholding values and that they are reinforced in anyway possible (morning huddles, monthly meetings and so forth).

  1. Brand Story

Think about your history. How did you come about, what have been the highlights and developments to today?

Mention what you are famous/renowned for right now. What do clients, employees, suppliers and other stakeholders see you as?  Finish with outlining your direction and where and how you’re going to get there.

Storytelling is an amazing engagement piece and the better you can articulate your story, the more interest you will gain from prospective employees (as they feel they have come on the journey with you). When they start, they play their role in how the company/brand story continues to unfold.

  1. EVP – Employee Value Proposition

The quickest and easiest way to know your proposition to employees is to ask your current employees.

Survey them… “What is it about this company that you like?” “Why do you come to work?” “What do you love?” “What are the other offerings here that make it worthwhile?”

Again, this can be distilled, and you can give this “carte-blanche” to prospective employees. Saying “Our employees love the fact that they have…., that we offer…., that they can do….”

If you are having difficulty attracting or retaining staff, this is a game-changer. Just for the sake of committing these elements to paper, you will reinforce the direction for your organisation. It will provide clarity for those joining the business and will give true power in talent attraction and retention.

Corporate culture is so important when it comes to talent acquisition. For more information, contact Harvest Talent Recruitment & People Solutions, Geelong.

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