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  • Lightning HR Solutions Inc.

How to Attract Top Talent in Today's Candidate-Driven Market



For over 20 years now, Canada’s labour force has been declining. According to Statistics Canada, in March 2022 alone, there were more than 1 million vacant positions - a record high. As the economy begins to recover from the pandemic, there is a high demand for workers and an increase in labour scarcity. According to a survey conducted by the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), 55% of Canadian employers are struggling to hire workers and 26% are having difficulty retaining their workers.


Due to this labour shortage, employees have a greater advantage by being more selective about deciding where to work.


Remaining competitive during a labour shortage may sound difficult, however it’s not impossible.


Here are some ways to attract top talent during a labour shortage:


1. Embrace flexible work options


If there’s one thing this labour shortage has shown us, it’s that the future lies in workplace flexibility. According to the Labour Force Survey conducted by Statistics Canada, 87.7% of teleworkers exclusively working from home reported having a healthy balance between work and personal responsibilities. Also, 83.6% of those with a hybrid work arrangement reported having a good work-life balance.


These percentages reveal that flexible work options greatly benefit employees - convincing them otherwise would be a difficult, if not impossible, task to accomplish.


A recent Globe and Mail survey revealed that 60% of respondents would look for a new job with a more flexible working environment if they were required to return to the office full-time. Most of the positive feedback is from those starting their careers, with entry-level jobs, while more than 56% of respondents feel anxious or angry about the return.


As an employer, offering one of the most desired benefits by employees, flexible work options, greatly increases the pool of possible candidates.


2. Update your hiring process


The hiring process isn’t what it used to be. As an employer, using the same old hiring strategies that worked years ago isn’t the key to attracting talent anymore.


Speed is what matters during the hiring process. This wasn’t always the case, just a few years ago when employers took their time evaluating the large pool of candidates after every job posting. Today, if you have a candidate that you think is fit for a role, delaying their job offer, even by a day, risking risks them accepting another offer. Employees are no longer simply waiting - they’re constantly moving and finding new opportunities.


Overall, it’s important to create a positive candidate experience, which does not include a long and tedious process. This will give them a positive outlook on how valued they would be as an employee of your company.


3. Offer competitive pay and benefits


In a survey about labour market conditions, the top two reasons why employees want to leave their job are a desire for higher wages and more benefits. It was found that companies offering competitive salaries and benefits were 1.4 times more likely to retain their employees. Well-informed candidates will not bother applying if they see a compensation package below the competitive industry standards.


By researching salaries offered by other companies in the industry, you will know the competitive salary range. However, salaries in the high range are not the only way to stay competitive. With attractive job benefits, you signal that your employees are valued.


4. Keep Up with the latest digital developments


Many job seekers, especially Gen Z, prefer working for companies that keep up with the latest digital trends. With a majority of people on social media, building your online brand awareness is a good way to capture the interest of potential candidates. Social media platforms, such as, LinkedIn are great tools to reach out to people and spark conversations.


The job market is constantly evolving. As an employer, knowing what potential candidates want will greatly benefit you during the hiring process. Hiring is no longer a one-way conversation; it’s a collaborative effort. Much like how candidates are trying to prove to you that they are a good fit for your company, you must, in return, prove that you are a good fit for their lifestyle.


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