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The Ball is in Your Court


The Ball is in Your CourtThink back three short years when skilled candidates were scarce. Some businesses closing their doors for lack of employees; wages at Tim Horton’s in Alberta rose close to $20/hour, university students were working all summer, and even if you were fortunate enough to hire skilled employees, retaining them was another matter!  During the past 2 years organizations downsized while focusing to retain their most talented employees.  Today, many of the downsized individuals are still unemployed, and there’s been no uptake in new jobs.  In a short span of time we’ve gone from scarcity to an abundance of available workers. While this is good news for employers, your focus must stay the same – to hire candidates with the right skillset, motivation, attitude and fit with your culture.

Last week I posted two jobs on a job board and received 15 resumes within 20 minutes. These could be candidates applying for everything, and could also include those who are only applying for your type of role, location, or industry. Here’s how to navigate through an abundance of candidates:

  • Look to your current top employees to see the skills, knowledge, experiences and attributes you need to replicate in a new hire.  Use that criteria for your hiring compass.
  • Telephone potential candidates and ask key questions to determine their motivation, and to assess if they have the core skillset you are seeking.  Apply the same due diligence throughout your interviewing, assessing, and referencing process.

The ball is in the employer’s court right now. Hire the right candidates then focus on integrating, developing, and retaining them. Prepare for your future with an engaged productive workforce who have the skills your business needs; who knows what 2011 will bring. When the market opens up, the employees you’ve hired may want to stay and move your business forward. Tip the scale in your favor.
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