Recently our COO, Brad, penned a blog talking us through the dangers of switching off hiring activity during a market downturn, rather than switching it up and exploring alternatives. If you missed that, you can check it out here.

This time around, we’re moving away from the strategic viewpoint to look at some tactical initiatives you could consider for your business during a market downturn. We’ve highlighted 4 things you can do to keep things ticking over from a talent perspective during quieter times and set your team up for success when hiring levels increase again.

Here they are:

1 | Dive into data

Whilst it’s not always the most fun, data is the most functional here. An in-depth look at the nuts and bolts of your hiring process, whilst you have the time do so, can really pay dividends in future when hiring activity increases and you’re working with an airtight setup. Start with your key metrics:

📅 Time to hire

💷 Cost per hire

🤝 Offer acceptance rate

⌚️ Hiring manager time spent

Looking at each of these metrics will really illuminate any parts of your hiring process where inefficiencies are creeping in or, by contrast, where you’re really nailing it. This forms the blueprint of your focus areas for improving hiring performance (or maintaining it!)

2 | Scope out the competition

Use this downturn to take a look at what your competitors are doing with their hiring and take note of the strengths and weaknesses in their game. Benchmarking your approach and processes for a particular role, skill set or business function against those that are doing it best in your market can really help you step your own game up. Consider checking out what they’re doing in the following areas:

🖥 Careers page

📝 Job descriptions

📣 Employer Brand (EB) content

🦄 LinkedIn page to see the calibre of candidate they’re bringing on board

3 | Invest in-house

If hiring is really off the table for the time being, consider exploring opportunities to develop the team you’ve already got. Doing this brings two main benefits:

🔋 Engagement: Investing in your team’s Learning & Development (L&D) journey is a great way to keep them engaged in your business and thus improve retention (even more crucial at a time where you’re not going to be able to hire anyone as a replacement!)

📈 Up-skilling: By helping your team get better at their role, you’re making your employees more valuable and your business stronger overall. What better way to prepare for the markets to ramp up again than making your business even harder for your competition to beat?

4 | Focus on the definites

Which roles will you definitely be hiring for again when the market bounces back? Which talent pools are absolutely essential for future growth? If there are certain roles or skills you know you’ll always need, dedicate the time to nurture – if not actively grow – those talent pools and candidate communities. Not only will this strengthen your employer brand in general, but it will give you access to a pool of suitably skilled candidates who are already familiar with your company when you need to hire them.

What next?

Times are tricky right now for so many businesses and there’s no playbook for navigating the markets we’ve seen in the last few years. We do, however, firmly believe there’s a way to not only set up for future hiring success, but make the most of what we’re facing right now.

We’re helping our customers navigate their hiring activity right now and if you’re in a similar situation we’re always open to a chat about it, obligation free 👇

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