How to build a hiring strategy for next year

As we head into 2021 and start taking baby steps toward stability, we need to look back at this year and bring with us the lessons learned. All four of these essential tools in your hiring toolkit were on the rise and important topics pre-pandemic and were accelerated at warp speed in 2020. These indicate, yes, the “new normal” for talent acquisition.  

Whether you’re hiring up quickly to meet pandemic needs, or you’re preparing to bring back workers in the next few weeks to months, these are the essential strategies to consider and implement. 

Integrate hiring tools 

From sourcing to interviewing to onboarding, your talent acquisition tools should remove mundane tasks, give your team more time in the day to focus on making connections and more efficiently connect you with the right candidates. You shouldn’t be juggling logins or comparing one system report to another to find out if your hiring tools are working for you. You might even be working with a leaner staff as we all continue to feel the impact of the pandemic. In any case, optimize your hiring process and rely on platforms that support you at every stage. 

Create a skills-based hiring plan 

Want to hire a true team member who does more than executes tasks on a laundry list job description? You need to focus on skills. 

More than 70% of job seekers have spent quarantine learning new skills. More than 80% are willing to leave their current role or industry for a new job, and more than 60% have considered it. This is not bad news – it means job seekers are investing in their education (read: more talented and qualified) and it means you’re not beholden to hiring a narrow set of job titles. Focus on what someone can do, their demonstrated ability and what they know, alongside their job titles and industry experience, for a more robust understanding of a candidate.  

Prioritize your company culture and employer brand 

Your reputation as a good employer is built on how your employees feel about you and what they tell friends and family members. If turnover is high, morale is low or you just want to make sure folks feel connected while working remotely, you need to invest in your company culture. Offer benefits that employees value and job seekers will flock to, with a focus on flexibility. Here are a few more tips to define your company culture to attract talent and build stronger teams. 

Build diversity and inclusion initiatives 

This year gave us a renewed, intense focus on diversity and inclusion efforts, and it remains an important priority heading into 2021. Employers have a huge opportunity to improve the lives of workers of all backgrounds. Use these insights to create a comprehensive and inclusive hiring strategy that will help you reach more diverse candidates in the next 12 months, helping you build more diverse teams for the long run. 

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