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Hiring new employees can be a major investment for an organization. Not only is it costly to advertise for, assess, and choose between job candidates, but newcomers to organizations often need to be trained in their new role and adjust to the organizational culture and policies. This investment in new employees is forfeited if employees choose to leave the organization after only a short period of time.
In order to save their organizations the cost and headache associated with hiring and losing talented employees, leaders need to be able to hire the right individuals and to keep these employees sufficiently happy to want to remain with the organization.
Attracting staff is the ability to hire and retain staff, and keep turnover at an acceptable level. Leaders who exhibit this trait are not only skilled at selecting and hiring talented employees, but are also able to keep these employees long term. Turnover rates are kept low with leaders who are effective at attracting staff.
In assessing your ability to attract and retain staff, consider the following:
Start at the beginning: Choosing the right person doesn’t start with a resume or interview – it begins in how you choose to recruit potential employees. Be mindful of how you advertise your open positions. Choose your target population, and ensure your recruitment style will reach the attention of the right people. Keep in mind that research shows differences in candidates depending on where you choose to recruit – opening your job up to those outside your organization often results in a large candidate pool with diverse experiences and training. Asking internal employees to recommend possible candidates reduces this diversity, however, often results in quality new hires who are likely to remain with the organization longer.
Make use of the available knowledge and tools: Unlike some of the competencies required of leaders, leaders can make use of existing tools and measures to make themselves more effective at attracting, hiring, and retaining staff. For example, personality is an effective screening tool when hiring employees. Certain personality traits may be beneficial in specific industries, while others, such as conscientiousness, are seen in successful employees across positions. There are many measures that can quickly and accurately assess personality. Similarly, standardized forms exist to evaluate the performance of individuals in interviews. Using evidence-based tools to aid in selecting employees can greatly improve your chances of hiring the right individual.
Choose employees who choose your organization: Remember, good fit is about more than the employee having the skills and traits you desire. A new employee also needs to feel comfortable and competent within the culture of your organization. When hiring a new individual, be realistic about the job they are applying for. Make sure you fill them in on the details of the environment they will work in, the expectations for their performance, and the general structure of their day-to-day work. This way, applicants can make informed decisions, and can self-select out of environments or organizations they would not thrive in. This leaves you with a pool of candidates ready and willing to not only perform their job, but to commit to the realities of your organization.
The following steps can help you become better at attracting staff:
ANALYZE what’s important for a given position by visiting ONET.
DEVELOP your ability to Attract & Retain Talent and other leadership skills by taking advantage of SIGMA’s Coaching Services.
Interested in a hard copy of this handout? Download your PDF copy of our Leadership Series handouts: Attracting Staff.
Contact SIGMA for coaching on developing your skills as a leader.