How to Attract the Best Employees


Filling those important job vacancies that are vital to the success of your business can be difficult and time consuming. Here are some top tips to make sure that attracting the right candidates isn’t a tricky process.

  • Using a Recruitment Consultant

Broadly speaking there are two types of recruitment consultancies – “search” firms and “contingency” recruiters. Search firms (also known as headhunters) will conduct a scientific search of your market, identifying all potential targets, assessing their suitability through references and peer reviews and headhunting to secure them. This is a very labour intensive approach, with a Consultant possibly only working on one or two briefs at a time. As such, fees tend to be 30% of basic salary, with 2/3 of the total fee non-refundable and paid ahead of successful placement to pay for the research time that the firms have committed to. As such, employers usually work with just one search firm exclusively. Usually these are for very senior or specialist roles. Contingency recruiters use a mixture of advertising, database search and headhunting. They charge somewhere between 15% and 30% of basic salary dependent on seniority of role and difficulty to fill. The fees are only paid on successful completion and come with a refund system attached, so represent less up front financial risk. These are largely used for junior to mid level roles or senior roles that are not too specialist. You may choose to work with one recruiter exclusively in return for a special deal, or brief several. We would recommend that when chosing a recruitment consultancy you ask for examples of similar roles/clients that they have worked with, and also check how they operate and what their ethical/professional stance is.

  • Direct Response Advertising

Using direct response advertising can help you to generate a continual flow of candidates from national and specialist job boards. Research which job boards candidates use, to know where is best to post your open roles. Different job boards are aimed at certain professions or industries, so it is important to target your advertising budget at the right pool of candidates. Bear in mind that advertising response has been dropping off over the years as candidates use other methods such as social media to look for jobs. It also only attracts “active” candidates rather than those who are not actively looking for new jobs. Some would argue that the “inactive” candidates would be more coveted, as it could be preferential to hire someone at the top of their game rather than who is actively looking for a new job.

  • On-line Marketing

There are many social media platforms now used by both employers and candidates, including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Linked-In. Employers are also using blogs and thought leadership pieces to raise their profile and appeal as a great place to work. Remember to post information and pictures also showing the fun/human side of your company, e.g. social nights out, which demonstrate your rich social culture. A dedicated careers page on your web site, with both open opportunities and case studies of how some of the staff have progressed and their views on the company can also be beneficial.

  • Personal Recommendation

A happy, satisfied employee will feel comfortable recommending your business as a great place to work, but often they forget. Developing a referral scheme which incentivises and rewards recommendations and referrals is a great idea. If you do so, it is important to then regularly remind staff of it and highlight internally any successes from the scheme to show that you mean business.

  • Great benefits

Offering a great salary is only part of a job package. Benefits are also an important and equally attractive part of your job offering and help retain as well as attract staff. Typical benefits might include; health insurance, free child care, pension schemes, gym membership, massages, free breakfast, weekly drinks, birthday off work, away days, prizes and incentives and a company car or car allowance. Weigh up what benefits will work best for your company and make sure to advertise these along with your general job advertisement.