How COVID-19 Is Affecting Your Recruitment – And What You Can Do About It

How COVID-19 Is Affecting Your Recruitment – And What You Can Do About It

by Joshua Madden, candidate select GmbH

How COVID-19 Is Affecting Your Recruitment – And What You Can Do About It
Covid-19, more commonly referred to as Coronavirus, has swiftly upended businesses all over the world, and with it their planning for the year ahead. The challenges many firms face are serious, potentially life-threatening for them, so significant interruptions to normal business operations is expected – including recruiting, with some stopping the hiring process altogether. Here is a short list of solutions your business can use to combat the uncertainty surrounding these recent times, and keep your business well-positioned going forward. 

Hiring Freeze – Keep Your Pipeline Strong & Motivated
Many firms have taken to freezing their hiring process for the moment, perhaps this includes yours. But this is not to say that they should necessarily stop attracting and engaging external talent – rather, this should be the time to leverage your existing resources to communicate with potential applicants. This need not be about future opportunities, but can take the form of a wide range of activities; for instance, hosting a webinar presented to the public or targeted to a specific demographic, or holding a competition on social media. In essence, anything to keep your company engaged with the world is worth doing at this time, particularly as many are staying safe at home and likely in front of a computer screen more often than normal.

Key Challenge: Candidate Engagement
If your message is too widespread or general, it may miss the particular “hook” that your desired applicants may find interesting, or they may just dismiss the message entirely if they don’t see it as relevant for them. Ensure you communicate not just your company’s activity, but also your intention to continue engaging with them in a sincere, meaningful way targeted at (and relevant to) them.

Candidate Screening & Assessment – Virtual Solutions
Recruitment at this time presents unique challenges, though these can be turned into opportunities – and perhaps easier than you may think. People have long spoken of the coming digital transformation, and the current crisis may be what will now push it to the top of your agenda. Especially as many firms pull back from talent acquisition, this would be the perfect time to research existing HR technology to help you find the right candidate for your open roles, both through talent engagement as well as candidate assessment. Take stock of the possibilities out there, and get in early with some of the groundbreaking solutions for your hiring process before others do.

Key Challenge: Data Security
Of course, no technological solution is a magic box – they’re only as good as the data and programming they’re using. It’s important for you to understand what the program is capable of and what it is intended for, which calls for a robust verification of the tech with many questions being asked (and adequately answered) by the vendor. In short, make sure you do your homework.

Onboarding New Hires – Learning & Feedback Online
As you bring in new people, you will need to find new ways to introduce them to your team and train them on their new role and tasks. This presents challenges while working remotely, which calls for a review of your learning and development strategy. Even if you may not have one in place this may be the time to do so, as there exist many solutions to ensure the newest members of your team are not kept out of the loop or in a silo – some of these solutions are platforms, some add-on tools, though others can be as relatively straightforward as using Zoom or Skype. Regardless, start thinking now about what to do with your new talent as you bring them on board.

Key Challenge: Communication & Benchmarking
Like with any L&D plan, you need a way to keep in contact, as well as set goals and benchmarks in order to measure performance and keep them on track if need be. Establishing a routine for catch-ups (even if just for 5 minutes) and a series of SMART goals will go a long way toward ensuring you’re able to do this even while working remotely.

These are a few strategies for how to manage the COVID-19 crisis. While many will be forced to suspend certain operations for the present moment, once normalcy returns there will be a mad scramble to get back into the game. Make sure that when that time comes, you’ve never even left it.