A hiring freeze doesnít mean recruiters should be left in the dust. When you no longer have to spend your days sourcing and interviewing, you can shift your focus to making a bigger impact. You have a valuable skill set and business insights that can be used in many different ways. Nowís your chance to work on the projects youíve dreamed about while also positively impacting the business.
Donít let a hiring freeze hold you back from continuing to be an outstanding employee. We identified 12 projects recruiters can tackle to make an immediate impact on the business and better position your organization for when the hiring lull is over. Youíll also find advice on how to communicate your efforts effectively to your leadership team.
Table of Contents
Projects That Make an Impact During a Hiring Freeze
Projects to Prepare for When a Hiring Freeze Stops
Tips For Communicating the Impact of Your Hiring Freeze Projects
PROJECTS THAT MAKE AN IMPACT DURING A HIRING FREEZE
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#1: EVALUATE & OPTIMIZE YOUR RECRUITING TECH STACK
One of the quickest ways to make an impact during a hiring freeze (and impress your chief financial officer) is to evaluate the tools within your recruiting tech stack. Strategically identify the tools that donít add any value during a hiring freeze, like certain sourcing tools for example. Putting pause on investing in these tools helps cut costs and shows your willingness to help the business during this period. However, itís important to not overdo it. The tools in your recruiting tech stack that add long-term value, like employer branding platforms, should remain, especially since hiring freezes are only temporary.
You can also use your spare time to optimize the tools within your recruiting tech stack. After all, the tools youíve invested in are supposed to be saving you time and money. Yet, more than 42 percent of recruiters share they struggle to have the time and data to influence their strategy. Nowís the time to become an expert on your recruiting tools so they can make a bigger impact on your bottom line.
#2: ADVANCE YOUR SKILL SET
Have you been holding back on your own professional development because of time constraints? Now is a great time to tackle that recruitment certification course youíve been meaning to take or find a training course to master a new skill set. Donít be a part of the 27 percent of people who feel they donít have the skills they need to grow in their careers. Take action and invest in your own professional development so you can help out your employer now and give yourself an advantage in the future Ė 74 percent of workers invest in learning to remain employable.
According to data from LinkedIn, here are three skills recruiters believe they should develop now to prepare for the future:
85 percent - Engaging passive candidates
84 percent - Analyzing talent data to drive decisions
82 percent - Advising business leaders and hiring managers
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#3: TRAIN EMPLOYEES TO BE BRAND ADVOCATES
A hiring freeze often has a negative connotation. When people hear about a company pausing their hiring efforts, itís hard to get them thinking about your brand in a good light. Empowering employees to speak positively about your company will help you get the right message in front of more people. Messaging that is shared by employees receives 561 percent more impressions than when a company sends it and content gets shared 24 times more when distributed by the employees of a company.
Train your employees on how to leverage your existing employer branding and marketing content to highlight how your company is adapting to this time. Host training sessions on the best practices for sharing stories on social platforms. Streamline how you notify employees of new content to share and how best to position each story. Helping your employees become brand advocates will not only showcase your company in a good light during a hiring freeze but also emphasize how engaged your workforce is.
#4: CREATE EMPLOYER BRANDING CONTENT
You canít empower your employees to be brand advocates if there is no content to share. We get it, content is a big investment and takes a lot of time to create. When your plate is full with hiring, there isnít much time to create great content but now you have all the time in the world.
Start identifying employees to highlight in your content. Then, take the time to interview them on topics candidates want to hear about most. Use these insights to build articles and videos that promote your company as not only a great employer but a great brand. Doing so will give employees more content to share and thus become better brand advocates.
Your efforts will also pay off in the long run:
Employer branding has shown a significant impact on hiring efforts for 72 percent of recruiters.
Having a strong employer brand has proven to produce 50 percent more qualified candidates.
Hiring is one to two times faster when a company has a solid employer brand.
#5: PARTNER WITH HR ON EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT
Turnover is expensive. In fact, itís estimated that the cost of losing an employee is one and a half to two times an employeeís salary and can be upwards of 100 percent of a tech employeeís salary. Keeping employees engaged and confident during a hiring freeze isnít always easy. HR will need all the help they can get on this front.
Tap into the data you have from exit interviews and stay interviews to highlight areas of concern. The results of these interviews will provide you with insight into what drives employees away and what current employees donít like about your company. Focusing on these factors will help mitigate losing more employees during a hiring freeze.
Additionally, you can tap into your turnover rate insights to determine if there are certain areas of your business that should be a cause for concern. Turnover data can help identify whether a specific department is likely to experience employee separations, and you can focus your efforts on improving employee engagement with them first.
#6: CREATE A PLAN FOR BACKFILLING KEY POSITIONS
Turnover wonít stop when a hiring freeze is implemented, in fact it may increase. The average turnover rate is 19 percent, which includes both voluntary and involuntary turnover. Work with your leaders to understand if youíll be able to backfill positions that are turned over during a hiring freeze. If so, be sure to keep your talent pipeline warm so you still have candidates to tap into if turnover does occur.
Finding ways to backfill key positions with little-to-no budget and reduced resources will be vital to keeping your business running smoothly. Tap into the contacts you have from your employee referral program as a quick way to connect with potential candidates who already know about your business. If you donít already have an employee referral program in your organization, itís a great time to build one for when hiring returns to normal.
PROJECTS TO PREPARE FOR WHEN A HIRING FREEZE STOPS
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#7: BUILD A RECRUITMENT AUTOMATION PLAN
After you've cleaned up your current tech stack and put pause on unutilized investments, look to the future. Begin thinking about what you'll need once the hiring freeze is lifted and how you can streamline your efforts. After all, many businesses will find themselves in the same boat and scramble to ramp up recruitment once things return to normal.
One way to do this is with recruitment automation Ė something 75 percent of companies already invest in during the hiring process. Find the features within your existing tech stack that will help you automate certain aspects of the recruitment process. This will not only save you time but set your company up for success when things go back to normal. And recruiters agree Ė 80 percent believe automating their sourcing efforts makes them more productive.
#8: ELEVATE YOUR CAREER PAGE
The average conversion rate of a career page is about 8 percent, showing there is lots of room for improvement. During a hiring freeze, focus on ways to update your existing career page to better engage and convert candidates. Add content to answer any questions they may have about working for your company. Update imagery on the page to include your most recent employees. Implement more enticing calls to action to make applying and joining your talent community easy. Most candidatesí (95 percent) first impression of a company is from their career site so make sure yours is one that counts. Doing so will position your company to get more applicants when the hiring freeze comes to an end.
#9: INVEST IN HIRING MANAGERS
Now is the time to start (if you havenít already) building relationships with your hiring managers. Research proves hiring managers are four times more influential than other recruiting performance factors and having a solid relationship with your hiring manager is the biggest driver of recruitment. Youíll need their expertise when crafting candidate personas for open roles, so use this time to establish a strong rapport. Educate them on the importance of their role in the hiring process and share best practices for interacting with candidates.
If youíve already invested in a collaborative relationship with hiring managers, donít lose momentum. Itís important to make sure hiring is still top of mind for them so you can start where you left off when things go back to normal. Build the right habits and keep them going, even during a hiring freeze.
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#10: TEST & IMPROVE YOUR APPLICATION PROCESS
Your application process can make or break the candidates who apply to your roles. The average drop off rate during an application process is 80 percent and almost half of applicants (48 percent) do so because of a complicated ATS system. Thatís a lot of candidates you could be missing out on because of a painful application process.
To improve your application conversion rate, test the experience. Pretend you are a candidate applying for a role. How long does the process take? Are there any technical issues? Do you ask for information you donít need? Identify points of friction then work to improve them during your hiring lull. This will keep you from losing out on great candidates when hiring is back to normal.
#11: WRITE BETTER JOB DESCRIPTIONS
Before applying, one of the last things a candidate sees is your job description. If you arenít optimizing them, you should be. Hereís a look at what candidates think are the most important aspects of a job description:
61 percent - Compensation
49 percent - Job details
23 percent - Company description
While you likely provide information about what your role entails and who your company is, are you detailing the compensation package for your roles? If not, you could be better fulfilling the needs of half the candidates looking at your job descriptions. Check out other data-driven ways you can write a better job description to pass the time during a hiring freeze. Spending your time on this project will put your company in a much better position to get more applicants when the hiring lull is over.
#12: GO ALL-IN ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Social media recruiting can go a long way when your hiring freeze is over. In fact, companies who use social media to recruit candidates see a 50 percent increase in quality of applicants. And almost three-fourths (73 percent) of millennials heard about their last job through social media. Itís a strategy you should be investing in but may not have had the time to until now.
Plan out your strategy for the long-term. What platforms will you use? How will you use them? What content do you have to share, and what content are you missing that you can create right now? Creating posts to promote your employer brand now and open roles in the future will put you one step ahead of the game when hiring becomes a priority again.
From India, Delhi
If the majority of your candidates are focussed on compensation, then I think you have major problems. You need to decide if you want to attract career minded candidates in it for the long haul or short term job hoppers who will cost your company dearly in the long run.
Recruitment is a costly business and if you have to keep doing it over and over again along with continually training new staff, then you might as well shut the doors.
Every organisation needs staff who are focussed on a career, ready willing and able to develop their skillsets, and become a valuable asset to the company over time.
Worldwide studies have shown time and time again that money is not the main motivator of staff. They want to be treated fairly, given advancement opportunities, training to develop skillsets, and to be recognised as making a contribution to the company.
From Australia, Melbourne
If you are knowledgeable about any fact, resource or experience related to this topic - please add your views.