With unemployment levels low and candidate shortages a problem for many industry sectors, organisations must ensure that their brand proposition, recruitment marketing and hiring processes are fit for purpose. With multilingual recruitment activity buoyant, language experts are in high demand. So, what can organisations do to boost their chances of attracting the best candidates?
In our latest blog, we look at the key talent attraction strategy pillars that will prevent you from missing out on top linguists.
Prioritise the candidate experience
Talk to any candidate and they’ll tell you that one of the most off-putting parts of the recruitment process is the time to hire, from initial interviews to the job offer stage. This can often take months, especially for permanent jobs, by which time individuals may well have accepted alternative offers from other companies. Regular communication, honesty and transparency can go a long way to keeping applicants engaged. The key takeaway here is to not only simplify the application process, but also make sure that candidates are aware of next steps, which makes them feel that they are valued by your business.
This is all part of the candidate experience, which is vital not only in keeping people engaged throughout the process but also upholding the reputation of your brand. From the first visit to your website or job board through to the job description and virtual or in person interviews, candidates will be evaluating an organisation’s suitability, in much the same way that you as hiring manager will be assessing their competencies. By providing a great experience, you will be gaining brand ambassadors (you don’t want brand bashers!), even if the applicants that don’t progress or land the job.
As we also know from research, the younger Millennial and Gen Z generations are looking beyond pure monetary rewards when choosing a new employer. While salaries for language graduates must be competitive, individuals also want to join organisations that take their environmental, social and governance (ESG) responsibilities seriously. Values need to be aligned between candidates and a company. Employees will also expect a flexible work pattern and other lifestyle benefits to achieve a better work-life balance. Being perceived as an employer of choice thanks to a strong employee value proposition (EVP) will greatly help you generate quality applications.
How to attract top language talent
If you don’t have the internal resources to manage the hiring process, you might consider enlisting external help. There is a cost but the most reputable recruitment companies not only use the latest technology, tools and techniques to source candidates, they will also have extensive global candidate networks and will often be specialists in their field with years of experience. They know their sectors inside out. They can often provide you with a shortlist very quickly, allowing you to move on to interview stage, safe in the knowledge that they will have mapped the market for the most relevant candidates.
Internal talent mapping
One area that often gets overlooked is your existing workforce. Have you thought about looking internally to see if there are other individuals who could be redeployed within the organisation? You could also consider offering courses and upskilling and reskilling programmes where skills are in short supply, which also demonstrates your desire to invest in people development. It is also important to promote the jobs you need filling internally as your employees can refer their friends or members of their families.
Organisations should also seek to learn from past hiring mistakes. For some positions, ‘buying’ talent may have proved more effective than ‘building’ from within. Performance appraisals are a good way to unearth areas for improvement. Does the employee have a clearly defined career path and are they recognised for their contribution? Is there enough scope and variety in the role and if not, how can you make it more appealing? By tackling these sorts of issues head on early, you can avoid getting to the exit interview when it’s too late to put things right.
Speeding up the application process, offering better company benefits, promoting flexible working, improving your job descriptions or partnering with a specialist recruiter will all help deliver desired hiring outcomes. But companies must adopt a ‘candidate first’ approach. Treat language applicants like your customers (which they may already be) and make yours an experience to remember!
Check out our latest language jobs