The hiring process can be brutal for employers and job searchers alike. That’s always been true to some extent, but in the current job market, where U.S. employment is at record levels, the best word to describe the hiring process might be “cutthroat.” In virtually every sector, employers are asking themselves, “Where have all the workers gone?” Now, possibly more than ever, learning how to find employees is crucial for any manager.
For experienced employers, knowing how to find employees is a skill set honed through years of trial and error. A successful placement requires time and resources that most hiring managers barely have to spare. So how can you find a new employee who’s not only qualified to do the job but also meshes well with your existing team and work style? We know that it’s a daunting task. Thankfully, there are some resources to help, including powerful job search engines for getting your job in front of the right applicants.
Obviously, you can turn to job sites like ZipRecruiter or attend career fairs in your area. However, let’s assume you’ve already done this and are still struggling to fill open headcounts. To help you out, we consulted experts to discover how to find employees even in the aftermath of the Great Resignation.
The hiring process looks very different today than it did 10 or even three years ago. In our post-pandemic world, where many employers are hiring for remote or hybrid positions, it’s become that much more important for employers to learn new recruiting skills. Because if you aren’t ready to adapt to the new job market, you may never find the right person for your open positions.
Below, we’ll help you learn how to find employees in 2022:
- How to find employees online
- Creative strategies for finding applicants
- The most common problems faced by employers
- The most common barriers faced by applicants
We’ll also walk you through how to find employees on job boards like ZipRecruiter and some best practices for identifying the perfect candidate in a large pool of applicants. With the right tools, you can finally fill that open position.
How To Find Employees Online
The internet is one of the most powerful tools recruiters and hiring managers have for finding employees and acquiring top talent in 2022. Tim Werth, SPY’s Site Director, has 8 years of hiring experience, and he says, “There’s almost always an online element to the job hiring process. Even if someone physically hands you their résumé at a job fair or conference, they will likely still need to fill out a formal application online. One of the big benefits of online hiring is being able to quickly explore a candidate’s background via social media, Linkedin, and personal websites. For very promising candidates, you can even reach out directly via email or social media.”
In addition to consulting our own Site Director, we also talked to career experts at ZipRecruiter. With this advice, we have some recruiting strategies to share.
Best Practices When Searching For and Vetting Potential New Employees Online
Our first tip?
1. Create a Pipeline of Applicants
“When you’re searching for candidates online, you want to cast a wide net, and that means don’t spend too long researching for vetting a particular person. At this stage in the hiring process, you’re just trying to create a pool of candidates and get your pipeline going. You don’t need to go down a rabbit hole researching someone’s entire personality or online presence,” said Werth.
“Identify three to four key criteria — location, education, industry experience, current job title — and find as many candidates as you can who fit that criteria. Only a handful of people you find will fill out an application, so save more time-consuming research for later in the hiring process.”
2. Leverage Your Existing Team
“Remember to leverage your existing team. Ask them to tap into their own personal and professional networks. You can also ask your employees to share job postings on social media, which can be surprisingly effective in getting a pipeline going quickly.” Emphasis added.
3. Rethink the Recruiting Process — Poaching Is No Longer Taboo
In some industries, it’s considered poor form to “poach” an employee from one of your competitors, but in 2022, it’s the standard operating procedure. In fact, with Millennials’ propensity to job hop and the Great Resignation still going strong, this might be the only way you can fill certain positions. Sure, you may find candidates who proactively seek you out and apply, but many positions will be filled only through targeted recruiting and headhunting.
4. You Get What You Pay For
If you’re struggling to find employees online, then consider increasing your recruitment budget. This doesn’t have to be a significant expense. Linkedin, Facebook and ZipRecruiter all offer tools to “Boost” your job posting and ensure it appears at the top of job search boards. For instance, the ZipRecruiter “TrafficBoost” feature can push out your job to the top of dozens of job boards for 30 days at at time for under $200. Free job boards have their place, but be prepared to invest.
Red Flags and Green Flags When Searching For the Right Candidate
According to Werth, there are a few easy rules of thumb when eliminating candidates.
“Their full résumé may not be online, but if they just started a new position in the last few months, then you can rule them out in 9/10 cases.”
A major green flag? “If you do have their full résumé, then look for candidates who stay in roles for multiple years. In the same vein, a history of promotion is usually a green flag.”
If finding a qualified candidate online is proving to be more difficult than you anticipated, there are other levers you can pull in the hiring process to find qualified people. Don’t be afraid to get creative!
Creative Ways To Find Employees
If you’re looking for alternative ways to find employees, we’ve developed a few creative avenues that can yield the perfect person for an open spot on your team.
1. Social Media
Social media can be toxic, but it’s also another digital tool in your toolbelt of how to find employees. Twitter can be an excellent place for finding folks who work in media, tech, politics and other fields related to the larger public discourse. You should still reach out on LinkedIn to maintain professionalism, but if someone has a Twitter presence you like, there’s no shame in reaching out about a potential job.
2. Multimedia Content
Posting a job for free is a great way to clarify your job opportunity. Still, another way to attract potential applicants is to advertise your company or team’s culture on YouTube, TikTok or other video platforms. Create a video of your entire team introducing themselves, doing a dance, singing a song or even playing a game. Interested candidates will want to know whether you’re hiring or not, and if someone is already intrigued by your team, you have much less to sell them on.
If that seems like a lot of work, you can also start small. Post photos of your team having fun via platforms like Instagram “Stories” along with a link to your job posting or careers page.
3. Host Online Recruitment Events
Informal recruitment events can be a great way to spread information about your company and team to potential applicants in a low-pressure, casual environment. People can join from home in their pajamas if they want to, and if interested, apply to your open jobs. It makes your company feel more accessible and inviting and can yield some excellent qualified candidates. These events can be held over video conferencing tools such as Zoom.
4. Develop Relationships With Local Colleges or High Schools
Most colleges and universities have some sort of office or program to help both students and alumni find job opportunities. If you’re not leveraging these types of venues, then you’re competitors probably are. See if local colleges have a job board or career portal of their own. Often, they’ll be happy to share relevant job postings with their alumni or student network.
5. Contact Other Hiring Managers or Leaders in Your Field
This might seem odd, as it will often require reaching out to competitors. However, senior leaders and managers may have mentees or former employees searching for jobs. If they don’t have a job opening for these people, they might be happy to refer them to your posting. Don’t be afraid to reach out and network with managers like yourself at similar companies.
Common Barriers for Employers
There are many barriers for employers looking to hire top talent, including competition with other potential employers and limited resources to dedicate to hiring.
1. Not Enough Time
Most of the time, hiring managers are trying to hire for open positions while also doing their full-time job. Additionally, an open head count on the team sometimes means there’s work not being done that they need to make up for. This means many hiring managers are spread thin, but online tools can help streamline the process.
Many of them filter through candidates’ résumés based on keywords, saving you research time, and compile all your prospective employees onto an easy-to-use dashboard. This can save you time digging through your inbox for follow-up emails and scrolling through search results on LinkedIn.
Keeping track of applicants for prospective roles can quickly snowball into a full-time job in and of itself (hello, recruiters!). Depending on how many headcounts you have open, you might have 10, 20 or even 30 people you’re emailing, scheduling interviews with, following up with and coordinating offers to. This can get overwhelming fast, so finding the right tools to help you keep it all straight is essential.
Many online job boards have dashboards that enable you to track potential candidates, from the moment an algorithm finds them to when you hand over that offer letter. You can reach out to them, have them fill out an application for your position and sometimes even interview them all from the job board. This streamlines the process and can help you stay organized.
3. Competition With Other Employers
In some industries, like tech and media, similar employers are competing for the top talent. It can be hard to find the right candidate, interview them, give them an offer only to find out you’re in a bidding war for their skills with another, competitor organization. Many job boards, such as Glassdoor and ZipRecruiter, give you the ability to personalize your company’s page and give prospective employees an idea of your values, ethics and ethos as a workplace. Not only will they be able to research the jobs you have open, they can also see what it would be like to work for you, giving you an edge over the competition.
Common Barriers for Applicants
Applying to jobs online can sometimes feel like sending your résumé out into the void, with slim chances of hearing back from anyone. This can be disheartening, especially if you’ve been searching for a while. And even if you do hear back from someone, job interview processes can take a very long time, and it can be weeks between interviews depending on how organized or spread thin your potential future team is.
Here are a few of the most common barriers for online job applicants and how online tools can help:
1. Never Hearing Back
One of the worst parts of the job interview process has got to be the tens (sometimes hundreds) of jobs you apply for and never hear back from. Submitting an online form can make you feel helpless in pursuing an opportunity you’re perfect for. It can be frustrating when it feels like an actual human is never at the receiving end of your résumé, portfolio and cover letter.
This is why it’s more important than ever before to use algorithm-powered job boards that use keyword-tracking software to get your résumé and cover letter in front of the right opportunities. This gives you a better chance of hearing back, and ultimately landing the right position for you based on your experience.
2. Long Interview Timelines
Another barrier to applicants pursuing and receiving the jobs they want is lengthy interview processes. We’re sure you’ve heard horror stories about months-long interview processes that end without any follow-up from the employer. Some of the best job boards out there give employers access to a free dashboard, where they can keep track of potential candidates and hopefully avoid accidentally ghosting someone.
3. Vague Salary or Pay Rates
Increasingly, young people expect to know how much they can earn at a position before applying. It’s part of a major shift in the recruitment process. Some states are even considering laws that force employers to disclose salaries for open positions. This isn’t a requirement today, but if you’re struggling to attract applicants, consider posting more information about your salary or pay rates.
How Sites Like ZipRecruiter Can Help
ZipRecruiter was rated the No. 1 hiring site in the U.S. by G2 survey results as of January 2022 and has been used by companies large and small, including The Home Depot, Target, Netflix, Verizon and Aetna. They’ve got a whole suite of tools to help you quickly get a short list of candidates without sacrificing quality during the search.
When asked how to find employees on ZipRecruiter, the company’s Chief Economist Julia Pollack notes that “50% of Fortune 500 companies have used ZipRecruiter for their hiring needs. Businesses rate it the most likely to recommend in the job site category and the No. 1 easiest to use, again according to G2.”
ZipRecruiter makes it easier for hiring managers by making it easier for candidates to apply, Pollack adds. “Our résumé database and Invite to Apply features are particularly popular and allow employers to find quality candidates and reach out to them proactively before they even apply.”
Finding Your Next Hire With ZipRecruiter
ZipRecruiter is a site designed for candidates and hiring managers and their specific needs during the hiring process. We’ve outlined a few key tools below, and we will walk you through how to use them effectively during the hiring process. We’ve also included some advice from the managers of the SPY team, who have years of experience finding employees.
1. Use ZipRecruiter’s Customizable Templates to Write Your Job Description
Crafting a thorough, accurate job description is integral to the right candidates finding you and a key skill set in mastering how to find employees. ZipRecruiter has an easy-to-fill-out form where you enter critical details like the job’s title, location, whether it’s remote or not and benefits. After creating an account for free, anyone can post a job on their job boards and gain access to their 100+ job sites. Once your description is ready to go, a few clicks makes it live.
Some key tips for an interesting, successful job description:
- Make sure it includes all necessary information about the position, the job responsibilities, to whom the position would be reporting, and the qualifications.
- Don’t be afraid to add some personality to it! Job postings can get sterile very quickly. You want it to reflect the job itself and the personality of the company, the team and you — the one who is writing it.
- Create urgency for the role. Emphasize that you’re hiring someone now because you’d like someone to start soon! This will give potential applicants the urgency to promptly submit their résumés if they think they’re right for the job and hopefully land you a candidate faster.
2. Browse ZipRecruiter’s Instant Applicant Matches
As soon as you post your job description, ZipRecruiter’s matching algorithm scans thousands of previously uploaded résumés. The site is programmed to look for the right skills, education level and years of experience for your position. ZipRecruiter finds them and takes it one step further: the site invites them to apply to your roles.
That’s right! You don’t even have to reach out to candidates and urge them to apply. ZipRecruiter does that for you, so the next step is browsing through the applicants already interested in your position.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself when deciding whether or not to invite a candidate to interview:
- Do they have the right experience?
Experience matters in the job market, and relevant experience matters even more. Picture what the day-to-day for this role will look like: What will be on their to-do list? What tasks do you need them to accomplish regularly? Does this person already have experience with these things?
- Do they seem like an employee you want on your team?
A résumé is just a sheet of paper summarizing someone’s career to date. But if you read between the lines, it can also tell quite a story. Have they been at the same company for years? This shows loyalty. Have they progressed in their career? Been promoted? This shows ambition, trustworthiness and that they’re good at their job. Have they jumped around and stayed at multiple jobs for less than a year? This might display a lack of focus or something worse. Look for key indicators of character in how someone’s career has progressed.
- Does this role seem like a worthwhile next step for them?
You don’t want to waste time interviewing, emailing and following up with someone who doesn’t want your job. If they seem overqualified for the role or are already at a more senior level than your role offers, you might want to move on to someone else. Unless they’re making an industry switch, many applicants are looking for a new challenge and progression from their last role. They want to learn more, expand their skill set, and build on the experience they already have. If your role can do that for this candidate, you should invite them to apply.
3. Receive and Keep Track of Candidates in ZipRecruiter’s Employer Dashboard
ZipRecruiter has designed their employer dashboard to help you keep track of candidates for your position and invite additional ones to apply if their résumés leave you wanting to learn more. You can sort them based on priority, review their qualifications and even rate them based on relevancy to your position.
ZipRecruiter uses this information to send applicants similar to those you like. You’re never locked into 30-day job posts, so if you fill the role and want to post a new job, you can always do so.
ZipRecruiter’s hiring software is so top-notch that 80% of hiring managers who post on their site receive a qualified candidate within the first day. You can post your first job for free at the link below.