Social Media Strategies to Attract and Retain Top Talent

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Social Media Strategies to Attract and Retain Top Talent

Utilizing social media to recruit candidates is at an all-time high. LinkedIn and Facebook have forged a new bridge linking job applicants directly to recruiters and the companies they are looking to join. It is crucial for HR departments to look at what they are doing to adapt to the transforming job seeker market.
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In 2013, Skilled Talent Shortage and Poor Candidate Experiences

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In 2013, Skilled Talent Shortage and Poor Candidate Experiences

Skilled Talent Shortage

In 2013, there was a prevalent skilled talent shortage, and it’s expected to continue into 2014.

ManpowerGroup found that employers are continuing to struggle to find skilled talent, specifically in:

  • Skilled trades
  • IT
  • Engineering
  • Technicians
  • Mechanics
  • Finance and accounting
  • Sales

The primary reason companies are having trouble finding skilled talent is due to the lack of technical and soft competencies, available applicants, and experience.  Applicants were also looking for more pay than offered.
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Competition for Top Talent Rises; Proactive Approach is Recommended

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While unemployment across the country might be high, employers around Northeast Ohio might be surprised to learn that isn’t necessarily the case locally.

For example, the city of Mentor reported an unemployment rate of 5.8 percent for September, according to an article published in November of 2011 in The News-Herald.

“There’s a perception out there that the unemployment rate is so high,” said SueAnn Naso, President of Staffing Solutions Enterprises in Mayfield Heights. “The federal rate is what everybody hears, but when you drill down into different pockets in Northeast Ohio, we’ve got a lot of people back to work, and our rates are much better.”

For employers across the region, a lower unemployment rate means a more competitive market for top talent. Employers looking to hire the right talent for their organizations can no longer afford to sit back and wait for talent to come to them, said Dan Barnett, owner of Integrity Staffing Services in Twinsburg.

“Companies should be very proactive in planning,” Barnett said. “Most companies are reactive when it comes to hiring. Being proactive, understanding the marketplace, knowing what you’re looking for - organizations should take a look at their hourly wages and salary structures, especially in the manufacturing and distribution level with minimum wage going up at the beginning of 2012. Companies need to start reconsidering pay levels, even if they’re above  minimum wage. Otherwise, they’ll miss the opportunity to attract the top talent in the marketplace.”

For employers looking to improve their recruiting efforts, local help is available from such firms as Staffing Solutions and Integrity Staffing, which together comprise the Northeast Ohio Talent Alliance (NEOTA). Staffing Solutions primarily works with organizations to fill positions in the administrative, office, accounting, professional, and human resources sectors, while Integrity’s focus is on manufacturing , distribution and light industrial.

“Recruiting can be a very time-intensive process,” Naso said. “Many companies don’t experience a steady or constant need for recruiting – it goes up and down. Companies tend to staff internally at a certain level, but they need help when they hit those spikes. That cyclicality creates a need to have a solution. Recruiting firms are constantly recruiting because there’s always somebody who has a need. 

“We’re constantly building a database, constantly adding to the pool. That gives organizations a resource to tap into when they have those peaks.”

A local manufacturer recently found itself in that exact position. Having just ended a hiring freeze, the company didn’t have dedicated recruiting support internally and was uncertain about the number of hires it would have in 2011.

“Our client brought Staffing Solutions in to manage all their permanent hiring as an outsourced solution,” Naso said. “We ended up filling more than twice as many positions as originally estimated in half the time it would have taken them to fill the positions on their own.

“They also decided to outsource the management of their temporary staffing to us because it was becoming increasingly more challenging for one agency to fill all their needs. We’re currently managing five agencies to ensure we’re bringing the quality talent needed to meet their fluctuating temporary needs.”

Staffing Solutions and Integrity Staffing are Preferred Partners of ERC. Click here for more information about our partners. 

4 Ways to Develop and Retain Leaders

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4 Ways to Develop and Retain Leaders

Do you have some people in your organization who you might label as “high potential” or perhaps an “emerging leader”? If so, what are you doing to develop and retain those employees? If the answer is “nothing” or you’re not sure what you can or should do, here are a few ideas to consider.

Assess Your Talent.

So your gut tells you that the new college grad that’s been interning for the last year who just accepted your offer to come on full time could be on the fast track to a very successful career. Before you sign her up for every leadership course in town or name her the successor to your CEO, you may want to consider assessing her leadership skills or at least getting some kind of a baseline in terms of her personality, skills, and abilities that you can compare against some benchmarks to see if your gut matches up with actual data. This can help you help your emerging leader understand what her strengths and weaknesses are, how she “ranks” compared to other leaders in your organization or based on whatever benchmarks you use, and can help set a nice baseline on which you can build an individual development plan to help her move forward on that fast track to success.

Assign a Mentor.

The benefits of mentorship programs are well documented, and the benefits to an individual you have labeled as a high potential leader are equally as, if not more, attractive. It’s not only a great way to enhance the development of an employee and more quickly get him familiar with how the organization works and how to make things happen, it can also be a wonderful retention tool.

Invest in Your Talent.

Just because you put seeds in the ground doesn’t mean your garden will grow. It takes a lot of time, care, and feeding to make sure the roots take hold and the flowers blossom. The same is true for your emerging leaders. Just because you’ve identified them as having a lot of potential for growth doesn’t mean they’re going to get there on their own. It takes an ongoing investment of time, training, and resources to make sure their roots take hold in your organization and their leadership skills blossom in the future.

Let Them Know.

Maybe. Depending on the culture of your organization and the maturity of those you’ve identified as high potentials, you may want to consider letting them know you think they have potential. On one hand it can be a great confidence booster and great way to increase the chances you’ll retain that person. On the other hand, if he or she already possesses a great deal of confidence (and doesn’t hesitate to let everyone else know about it) then you may want to take a different approach.


The bottom line is that when you have identified talent that you believe will help your organization long term, it makes a lot of sense to invest some time and thought into how you can increase the probability that talent develops in a positive way and that person stays with your organization for the long term.

Emerging Leader Training Series

Emerging Leader Training Series

Have the emerging leaders within your organization been identified? Do they have the skills and knowledge needed to best represent your organization? In this 3-part series, participants will learn tools to present themselves more effectively and enhance their contribution to the organization.

Learn More about Emerging Leader Training