small business hiring problems scaled

There’s no doubt that many small to mid-sized businesses were battered by the COVID-19 pandemic. As those left standing start to recover, a new challenge is hampering efforts: a severe lack of qualified workers.

The National Federation of Independent Business conducted a survey in September 2021 showing that 51% of owners had job openings that they were struggling to fill for the current period. Ninety-two percent of employers trying to hire reported that there were “few or no qualified applicants” for the positions they needed to fill. Twenty-eight percent felt that labor quality was their top business problem.

Of course, not being able to hire the necessary employees adds insult to injury for already struggling companies that are now trying to ramp up business operations where opportunity exists.

Why is this happening? It is due to a variety of reasons.

  • Some workers are unvaccinated and don’t want to become vaccinated in order to take a position.
  • Many working parents are having trouble finding child care for their children that will allow them to go to work.
  • Some potential employees are staying home for fear of contracting Covid-19.
  • Others have found other ways to make money.
  • Some candidates are only willing to work remotely.

The extra $300 weekly unemployment insurance just came to an end last month, which may soon broaden the pool of candidates. Regardless, businesses have to make some adjustments in order to attract new potential employees. Here are some things your business can do to encourage applicants:

1. Polish your employer brand.

With so many employees planning to change jobs or take on new ones in the near future, now is the time to present your company in the best possible light. Consider the following questions:

  • What sets you apart from other businesses hiring for positions similar to yours?
  • What are your business mission, values, and culture?
  • Do your current employees find your company to be a great place to work?
  • Why would someone enjoy working for you?

Make sure you are answering these questions on all of your hiring and social media platforms, as well as your website.

2. Leverage your social media accounts to post jobs.

Recruiting via social media is becoming more and more popular as employers start to woo younger employees. Use your social media posts and advertising tools to post open jobs on LinkedIn, Facebook, and other popular social media sites.

3. Craft job posts that are concise, professional, and in-line with your brand.

Your job post is probably the first thing candidates will see in regards to your business. Be sure that your posts are organized, well-crafted, and representative of your company’s culture. For example, if you use humor on a regular basis, infuse it into your post. If you are more serious, make sure that is communicated in your job description. Your company’s personality should shine through in your job listings.

4. Analyze and update salary, benefits, and perks based on what others are offering.

One very effective way to outshine other companies that are hiring in your niche is to be competitive with your benefits and pay. Check out what other businesses are offering to new employees and try to match or beat it. If you can’t, highlight some other great reasons that your company is the place to be or consider increasing flexibility in working to attract candidates.

5. Conduct pre-employment assessments to hire the best candidates.

Once you have candidates lined up for consideration, pre-employment assessments can help you find the best fit for your position. This will save you time and money, and help you avoid major hiring mistakes.

Hopefully these tips help you grow your business by attracting and retaining the best employees! If your business is struggling, we can help. Check out our business consulting services here or give us a call at (330) 722- 8764 to learn more about what we do.

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