It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…
Ok, maybe it’s a little bit early but the German markets have officially arrived in Birmingham, so surely that counts right?
Anyway, the recruitment industry traditionally starts to slow down a little bit at this time of year; people get merrier, there aren’t as many candidates around and/or roles to recruit for.
(Most people are waiting for January).
But there are still plenty of productive things to be done! Here are eight of them…
1. Preparing for January.
January is the best time of year to recruit.
It’s the whole “new year, new me” vibe which sees a huge amount of new active candidates coming onto the market – so make sure you’re taking advantage.
You want to walk into your office in January ready and raring to recruit.
You don’t want to let such a crucial month slip you by.
- Have you got the go ahead from decision-makers?
- Are your ads written and ready to go?
- Are you able to get them out on social media first thing? Or can you automate this process?
- Is the job spec updated, comprehensive and compelling?
- Do you have time and resources to screen CVs and call candidates as they start flooding in?
Or are the recruitment agency you are using ready to do the same?
If you get into the office in January and take two weeks to come up with a solid plan, then you’re going to miss the rush and potentially some great candidates!
Just because everyone else is slowing down, doesn’t mean you should. In fact, this is the best time to get ahead of your competition.
You may not have enough time to start a new recruit until January, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find them. In fact, it’s quite nice (for them and you) to start them right after the Christmas break.
3. NOT panic-hiring.
On the other hand, you definitely don’t want to rush the process.
It’s really not the end of the world if you don’t find someone before Christmas.
Obviously, it’s much better to delay hiring until the New Year – one of the best and easiest times to recruit – than to make the wrong decision (one that could cost you even more time and money).
4. Touching base with candidates.
No matter what stage your candidates are at (from pre-interview to accepted job offer) you should definitely touch base at least once before the Christmas break.
You see, Christmas is a funny time at work and the festive feelings and nostalgia that come with it can make people feel a little more loyal and a little more inclined to stick with a company.
That’s great for them! But it means that you could get candidate drop outs.
Touching base with a friendly and fun email or phone call to wish them all the best over the holidays is a great way of reminding them why they want to join your company.
(Because you’re really nice too)!
5. Working on their employer brand.
The best way to keep yourself top of mind of potential candidates (active and passive)?
Make sure you’ve got a compelling employer brand.
Christmas offers the perfect opportunity to show how fun and friendly you and your team are so…
- Get on social media and share some festive messages.
- Send Christmas cards and/or emails.
- Keep in contact with your candidates (see point 4).
- Share great, relevant contact (like a blog).
- Show how much fun your staff are having this festive season with photos and videos.
All of this means that when people do decide to look for a new job in January, they’ll be attracted to your company – that’s pretty important in such a competitive month.
6. Using automation.
If you do decide to leave your ads running over Christmas (why not?) but don’t want to be constantly checking emails and calling candidates over the break, it might be a good idea to set up an automated email (sent when candidates have applied for a job).
Just a couple of lines thanking a candidate for applying to the job, letting them know (exactly) when you’ll be back at work and wishing them a merry Christmas/ happy New Year.
This will set expectations for them, improve your employer brand and stop them from trying to follow you up endlessly (as some candidates do) before you’re back at work.
Do make sure you follow through with your promises though. If you say you’ll call them on your first day back, then do.
7. Reviewing their processes.
Whether you want it to or not, recruitment will slow down in December. Many candidates will wait till January to get their “fresh start.”
So it’s a good time to take stock and review your current processes.
Which tools/ job boards/ social media channels are working? Are there any bottlenecks to your process? If you’re using a recruitment agency, are they right for you?
Take a thorough look at your recruitment metrics to make sure that you start off 2017 on a productive note!
Recruiter Pro Tip
There are four key metrics all recruiters should be interested in.
- Quality of hire.
- Staff retention and turnover.
If you’d like some more info on these (and how to work them out properly) click here and check out or blog post on the topic.
Use the slower periods to review and improve!
8. Remembering their great current employees!
Of course, this “new year, new me” attitude could also have a negative effect on your company.
Do you think you’ll lose anyone?
Use the festive period as a time to remind your current employees exactly why they love working with you; have some fun, spread some cheer and reward them for their hard work this year!
Click here for some ideas on how to reward your staff, this Christmas!
You should also take some time to have a real think about your employee engagement and wellbeing practices and come up with ideas on how to improve them for the New Year.
OK, we’re still a few weeks away from Christmas, but it’s a good idea to start putting some of these festive strategies into place now – the time will go incredibly quickly!
If you’d like to read more of our recruitment, leadership and HR blogs, feel free to click here and subscribe. We’ll send across a quick weekly email!
Or check out these great resources for more advice on getting ahead this Christmas…
- How To Stay Focused During The Holiday Season.
- My top 5 seasonal IT recruitment tips for a stress-free Christmas.
- How to stay focused at work during the stressful holiday season.
Good luck.- James Ball