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What Small Businesses Can Do To Attract Talent On The Job Market

Published June 29, 2021 (last updated May 19, 2022) -
samll business owner who understands how to attract talent

For small businesses adding the right people to your team helps the operation scale and grow — but how can you attract talent on the job market when competition is so high? Small businesses compete with large operations on many fronts, which includes recruiting and hiring talented job applicants. While you likely cannot match the salaries a large corporation can offer, you can attract the right people in other creative ways.

In this article, we explore what you can do to convince talented professionals to apply for a role in your small business:

  • Streamline the application process
  • Offer perks for a desirable work-life balance
  • Support and aid professional growth

Finding a recipe for attracting talent on the job market is a case of trial and error. Read on as we help guide your search by making your small business more appealing to relevant, driven, and ambitious professionals.

Streamline the Application Process

Most small business owners know their website is an important tool for attracting new customers and converting sales — but did you know you can also optimize your site to attract talented professionals and job seekers?

With a site builder like WordPress or Shopify (and the various plugins available) it’s easier than ever to put together a careers page on your website, complete with a simple job application form that users can fill in and apply for the exciting roles on offer. Take our roles page for example, here talented applicants can easily filter and apply for challenging new opportunities without being deterred by a tiresome or arbitrary process.

Alternatively, you can leverage the support of leading employment sites like Seek to maximise the visibility of your job advertisements and increase the number of applicants you receive. Here are some reasons why talented applicant use job boards to find new roles:

  • They’re constantly updated with new opportunities
  • They have a place to research available roles and compare benefits
  • They have a platform to learn the latest career advice

Unlike creating your own careers page, many job boards charge your business a fee to list advertisements and source applicants, but either way, posting your opportunities online opens up an avenue where talented applicants can apply with ease.

Offer Perks for a Better Work-Life Balance

While matching salary might prove difficult to a small business when competing with a large organization, many talented applicants are after more value from the roles they apply for.

By offering generous work perks you can attract applicants with the prospect of a better work-life balance, whilst meeting professional needs, wants, and desires without providing an inflated paycheck.

Accommodate Flexible Working Hours

Flexible work hours are among the most sought-after perks on the job market, but only recently have we seen a universal application of this process beyond those caring for children or unable to get to their place of work.

During the pandemic many businesses made a successful transition to remote working by accommodating people’s home lives and the responsibilities that come with it: homeschooling, maintaining regular exercise, caring for family members and pets.

Offering flexible work hours when advertising a new role is a good idea not only because it’s a desirable perk, but also because it indicates to applicants that you’re a business that cares about its employee’s wellbeing and work-life balance.

But is it feasible? Well, yes. The pressures of the pandemic aren’t going to disappear, meaning flexible working is becoming commonplace. As long as the applicant is committed and doesn’t miss deadlines, their hours or place of working shouldn’t be an issue.

Support and Aid Professional Growth

As a small business, it’s important to recognize your employees grow in tandem with the operation, so any prospective applicant expects a clear sense of career progression from the role you’re offering.

You should be on the lookout for talent with drive and ambition, but to make yourself attractive to applicants you need to make it clear you’re willing to invest time, money, and effort to make them an asset within your business.

Show you’re concerned about the long term prospects of your employees by highlighting this in your job descriptions (as highlighted in this template by Indeed). For example, showcase how previous hires have progressed in your operation and what they have gone on to do once they have left.

Perhaps a junior staff member has been elevated into a management role — or maybe a senior employee has left the company in good stead and found new opportunities at a large corporation because of the experience your small business afforded them.

Training also plays a pivotal role in attracting ambitious and talented applicants. While not every applicant has the required experience for the role on offer, you also shouldn’t expect them to be the finished article either. Applicants are on the lookout for opportunities that align with their skill set, yet also help them grow and cement themselves as professionals.

While there is lots of competition from large organizations on the job market, you can still attract talented and driven applicants. From streamlining the application process to offering tangible perks and supporting professional growth — your small business can offer lots of opportunities to a prospective employee.

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About Employsure

Employsure is one of Australia’s largest workplace relations advisers to small- and medium-businesses, with over 30,000 clients. We take the complexity out of workplace legislation to help small business employers protect their business and their people.

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