Generalizations are never great, but for the most part, SMEs have traditionally hired people in a hurry, often without due process and often hiring the wrong people.
As the employee loyalty has begun to wane, such hiring on the behalf of SMEs is becoming more and more of a liability. The good news is that certain tools, technologies and new practices are making it easier than ever before for SMEs to improve their recruitment methods and do it as meticulously as only the big players could before.
Reaching Out to Candidates
The first step in recruiting the right talent for your SME will be reaching as many potential candidates as humanly possible. Traditionally, SMEs were relatively limited in their reach, relying on a very finite set of channels for outreaching to candidates. More often than not, these channels were exclusively local.
Nowadays, nothing is preventing an SME from reaching out to a global job seeker network via one of the innumerable job search websites and services that exist online. Even in more local terms, SMEs can now reach out to a larger number of candidates thanks to the ubiquity of local and regional job sites.
Thanks to social media, SMEs can also reach out to an increased number of candidates that are in some way already connected to the company. For example, when a company employee tweets a job ad, this puts this ad in front of all of their followers, some of which may be perfect for the position. This is just a single example, mind you.
Application and Interview Process
When it comes to candidates’ applications, we are once again seeing a major diversification of channels. For example, applicants can now use email and even social media to inquire or even apply to a job at a small-to-medium enterprise. Of course, when this happens, SMEs need to be quick to answer to any of their questions and especially applications.
There is also an abundance of applicant tracking software that is at the disposal of SMEs these days, all providing great aid in handling the increased number of applications and making sure that every candidate knows where they are in the application and interviewing process. This is especially important since the majority of job seekers say being poorly informed about their status is the worst thing about the application process.
Through automation of a number of processes in the application process, candidates will get a better experience and the employer will increase their chances of recruiting the best talent available.
After making a selection of candidates, it will be time to start interviewing them and, once again, this is where new technologies help SMEs do a better and more efficient job here.
Prior to this major influx of technology to HR, SMEs often rushed or skipped altogether the interviewing process, especially when they are in a hurry. This is one of the worst things a company can do when hiring and this resulted in many a wrong hire. With new technologies, SMEs do not only stay on top of their interviewing schedule and process, but can even interview their future employees remotely. Being able to attend interviews from hundreds of miles away also increases the chances that all candidates will actually attend them.
In addition to this, newly-affordable technologies like business intelligence can also help SMEs better organize the data they receive during the interviews and make decisions that are not based on someone’s opinion.
Welcoming New Employees
There are a number of reasons why onboarding is one of the most talked about concepts in HR over the last few years and these are all some very real reasons. Recruiters, HR people and business owners and managers have become very aware of the fact that the first few experiences a newly hired employee has with the company have a huge influence on their job satisfaction and engagement levels later.
New technologies are perfect for making this onboarding process streamlined and more pleasant for the new hire. It starts even before their first day as the vast majority of paperwork can nowadays be done digitally, without the new hire receiving and sending back reams of paperwork before they even set foot in their new office. SMEs can even send a brief video introducing their company or even some e-training videos to the new employee.
During the first few weeks, new hires will enjoy a much less stressful experience as they will get their bearings more easily thanks to the new software solutions that companies use. For example, something like online employee scheduling where they can check their schedule easily and on any device will efficiently do away with that feeling of not knowing what awaits them and what is expected from them.
Even something seemingly inconsequential as having new colleagues as friends on social media can help new hires feel more welcome at their new workplace and thus more likely to become productive and engaged employees.
Technology has truly ushered in a new age of recruitment and hiring and SMEs have benefited the most. They are finally able to compete with the big players when it comes to attracting and retaining top talent in the field.
And that is a very good thing.
Nate Vickery is a business technology expert mostly focused on future trends applicable to SMB and startup marketing and management processes. He has also been blogging in the past few years about before mentioned topics on various leading sites and communities. In the little free time left, Nate edits a business oriented website – Bizzmarkblog.com.
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