Written by Guest Author | April 19, 2016
If you were hoping that it would be easier for your company to recruit staff in 2016 than it was in 2015, we’ve got some bad news for you: it isn’t.
That is at least the verdict of the 82% of respondents to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development’s (CIPD) recent Resourcing and Talent Planning 2015 survey that said the last two years had seen heightened competition for talent. Indeed, three quarters of those polled who had attempted to fill vacancies encountered difficulties in doing so, while applications were down from the year before for two thirds of respondents.
So, how can your own firm overcome such conditions to find the right talent? By taking a more targeted approach, that’s how. Furthermore, what could be more ‘targeted’ than putting together a description of exactly what kind of candidate you are looking for, encompassing their particular preferences, behaviours and values?
Here are three reasons why candidate personas could make a massive difference to your company’s recruitment fortunes in 2016.
1. You’ll better understand how to appeal to the right candidates
The simple fact that you are trying to recruit staff rather than attract customers doesn’t change the need to take a marketing-oriented approach. A savvy company defines its target audience accurately so that it can communicate in a way that speaks to this audience.
Factors like personality type make a big difference to a candidate’s choice of employer, so you will need to pinpoint such things as your ideal applicant’s interests, ambitions and concerns, before demonstrating how your company answers to them.
2. You’ll know where to find such candidates
Once upon a time, you could simply advertise your firm’s latest vacancy on a more general job board and know that a sufficiently high proportion of your ideal candidates would see it. Today’s increasingly fragmented media landscape, however, has brought the need to consider a broader number of often more specialised platforms.
So, what social networks do your dream candidates actually use? Are they Facebook or Twitter people, or are you more likely to come across them on LinkedIn, Instagram or a more industry-specific portal? Well-formulated candidate personas will give you a lot of answers to this one.
3. You’ll maximise the chances of a good cultural fit
Does your company present itself as corporate and serious in its job advertising, when the actual atmosphere at your office is more of the ‘casual, jeans and T-shirt’ variety? Your recruitment descriptions need to appeal to the people who would actually fit in at your workplace, which candidate personas can definitely help you with.
But ‘cultural fit’ isn’t just about the atmosphere of your office – it’s also about how your workers’ motivations and values align with what the role you are advertising will actually require them to do, as well as your organisation’s wider mission.
It may take a while to create truly accurate candidate personas, but by investing the time and effort now, you can obtain much better recruitment results in the long run.