Unemployment rates are at record lows, labour shortages are impacting recruitment plans and the economy is still being heavily affected by inflation and rising living costs. All of this makes recruiting a much scarier proposition than ever before.

BRIAN STAHELIN, of Huddersfield-based recruitment specialists Stafflex, offers his top tips to consider when taking on new staff in these difficult times.

Advertise the important things

When advertising, put more effort into communicating the culture, aims, conditions, benefits, opportunity and potential prospects of a vacancy rather than getting mired down in dry job description and statements which could put people off from applying.

Examples such as you should be “energetic”, “ambitious”, “have good experience of”, “outgoing”, “must have” etc should be avoided as it can alienate potential jobseekers who think they are not ticking the boxes.

Speed is everything

Make the recruitment process as quick as possible. The longer the time taken, the more likely candidates will drop out due to other offers or just get fed up with an organisation that is slow acting.

Ensure that a clear outline of timeframes has been put in place and be transparent with your candidates so that they know exactly how the hiring process will be carried out.

Pick up the phone

Always respond to an application/enquiry, preferably with an initial telephone conversation to gauge interest, enthusiasm, experience, suitability, personality and if anything has to be communicated by e-mail or snail mail, do it straight away.

Although this may seem trivial – we cannot understate how important it is to get a feel of the candidate through a telephone conversation!

First impressions count!

There is no second opportunity to make a good first impression so make sure all contact is quick, clear, understandable, professional and any action is agreed by both parties.

The recruitment process for the jobseeker will leave them with a lasting impression on your organisation which if negative, could damage brand reputation.