Adding value during Covid-19 – Referment

I have spoken to a number of talent acquisition staff across a wide range of firms and while many are still active with closing existing processes, or helping to onboard recent joiners, there is an ongoing concern about the security of their roles in a market where new openings may be limited.

In bigger organizations it is possibly more difficult to change the focus of your role, but in sub-250 person companies, there are opportunities for talent acquisition staff to add value outside of their typical remit. 

Here are some ideas you can implement:

Refocus to people and culture

With the typical role of talent acquisition slowing down, this is a perfect time to be spending more time with internal staff to keep business morale high and driving forward. 

You could be spending time speaking with those staff members who are self-isolating alone, doing a health check on employees, run a weekly quiz, weekly virtual team drinks or even set up meetings between employees in different departments to share knowledge across the business and see how each department adds value to the overall organisation.

Work on your internal referral program

Many internal referral schemes fall by the wayside as they are not particularly well structured and the visibility of schemes is poor. 

Spend this time to engage your staff in the creation of an improved internal referral program, asking colleagues if they’d be interested in participating in such a scheme and if so, what kind of rewards they’d be looking for. It is important not to overburden non HR staff with employment activity as they have their own day jobs, but creating easily shareable content for them on their social channels would help engage their wider communities.

Work on external careers messaging

In times like these, Marketing will be focusing on reworking sales messaging to reflect the opportunities afforded to them due to Covid-19. Whilst hiring may not be at the top of everyone’s list of priorities, ensuring your messaging and careers pages are up-to-date and engaging and ready to go when hiring is again a priority, will do wonders for future recruitment. 

You could also take this opportunity to ensure that everyone has the same LinkedIn profiles, with a standard message about the company, values and purpose. This projects a great company culture and a unified mission that potential employees will latch on to when looking to apply.

Recruitment spend

Analyse your recruitment spend across the board and think of ways of either decreasing that immediately, or optimizing that spend in the future. For starters, you’re probably not paying for coffee or drinks meetings at the moment, but going forward could you save some time and money by implementing new spending guidelines?

Alternatively, did you find yourself spending too much time on expenses before Covid-19? Look into expense management software or do what we’ve done and open a Soldo account!

Enrich your data

Make contact with candidates who have applied directly in the past few months and reach out to see how they are doing. Update them on your company’s situation and what plans look like moving forward. This relationship management will see a huge impact further down the line plus it will give you updated information for future conversations.

Look at internal mobility

See where there are shortages in teams/departments and if skills can be immobilized internally for the next few months. Are there hidden skills that someone has not utilized at work before as there has been no need to. Can your office manager design some graphics for LinkedIn or could your sales teams be helping ideate new content ideas? Are there any internal automation projects that some development resource could be used for?

Stay relevant

Study the news and look at all things related to employment to help HR and Senior Directors. It’s worth jumping on webinars with legal experts around Coronavirus Job Retention schemes and for this we highly recommend checking out ASPCO here.

The dreaded F word

If your company is having to furlough staff, then one thing that employees can do in that time is undergo training. Work with the hiring managers to identify individual training needs/programmes for their staff. You could provide people with a Udemy budget and allow them to upskill in areas that will help them upon returning to work if there is budget.

Prepare for the future

The new norm may be unrecognisable, but spending time to look at how your business may look in 3, 6, 9 months time will inevitably put you in a better position. Will remote working remain a consistent theme or will people be pleased to come back into the office, how can working parents be better supported, how can people who live alone be better supported…  there are loads of variables to consider.

These are just a few ideas which we hope will add some value to those who are struggling to see where they can add value in this moment. 

Now is a time to focus on helping each other. It is a time to be proactive and look for ways to enhance the value that can be added.

Far too many people in a situation like the one we find ourselves in focus on the negatives and ‘what can’t be done’ as opposed to looking for the opportunities to help. 

We hope this is short lived, but we all must prepare for the worst. 

If there are any other ideas that people have we would love to hear about them so we can share with the talent teams we work with. Feel free to get in touch with me on LinkedIn.

Alex Odwell

Help someone find a new role.

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