How to Recruit Effectively in a COVID-19 World

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented disruptions across the globe, ultimately redefining every aspect of the workforce. Though some recruiters have accelerated hiring to fill new jobs that have been created, the majority have eased their everyday applicant outreach. No matter your situation, this pandemic has presented a unique opportunity to transform your old, traditional hiring process in order to become more efficient and ultimately, recruit the right talent.    

Adopt technology

With so much uncertainty, you may not be thinking about introducing new recruiting strategies or recruitment technology. But as we face periods of disruption, the time is right to take a holistic look at redefining your strategy so you’ll be ready to hit the ground running once your situation changes. How will you adapt to create a virtual candidate experience moving forward? How are you going to onboard any new hires if your staff are still working remotely? 

Remote working conditions, online meetings and end-to-end virtual candidate experiences are becoming the new norm, even across industries that haven’t yet embraced this technology for recruiting purposes.

Virtual interviews and career fairs

With the rapid adoption of one-on-one video interviewing and virtual career fairs, recruiters are finding it more efficient to conduct interviews online, and it’s resulting in shorter recruitment cycles. Candidates are now starting to expect a virtual candidate experience to be an option moving forward. Overall, it’s becoming a well-received concept.  From Zoom and Microsoft Teams to Google Hangouts and Skype, ensure the platform you select is used consistently across your organization.

If you typically plan on hosting a career fair in the summer or fall to fill seasonal positions, think about hosting a large-scale virtual career fair. These types of events are becoming more popular as organizations start to embrace virtual recruitment, and candidates definitely won’t be disappointed that you are still hiring amid the pandemic.

Applicant tracking systems

Will you have a lot of positions to fill as your organization returns to work? Or perhaps the pandemic has resulted in a huge demand for workers? Managing several job openings with a high volume of applicants  is not easy when you’re reliant on manual processes. Consider using an applicant tracking system like Recruit Right to screen and track candidates quickly and effectively. You’ll set yourself up for success as your organization transitions into its next phase of growth.

Outsource jobs

There are significant advantages to outsourcing certain skill sets, especially during a pandemic when the future is uncertain and the ability to meet people in person is restricted. Outsourcing allows you to gain access to the talent you need without the lengthy hiring cycle or the long-term commitment. Consider filling immediate, short-term gaps with contractual agreements.

Here are a few ways you can source contract workers:

  • Ask hiring managers for referrals with respect to freelance professionals.
  • Contract an external recruiter for assistance.
  • Leverage freelance websites like upwork, fiverr and freelancer
  • Use your social media channels to get the word out

Embrace remote work

Remote work is here to stay, so it’s time to embrace it. By acting positively and proactively toward this shift, your organization will stay in line with today’s candidate expectations. If you haven’t already redefined your work-from-home policies, it’s important to let your staff members know what is expected from them as you move to a more virtual workforce.

It’s a challenging shift as recruiters, candidates, employees and their managers get more comfortable with working from home. The quicker you embrace remote work as part of your culture, the stronger your team will be when we all come out on the other side of this pandemic.

Here are some tips on how you can embrace remote work:

  • Create a “Work from Home” playbook with tools and tips to assist staff who are working remotely.
  • Get familiar with video conferencing tools to use for candidate interviews, meetings, etc.
  • Find a quiet, comfortable environment for conducting virtual interviews and meetings.
  • Experiment with new ways of communicating with candidates, e.g. social media or even texting.
  • Host virtual coffee breaks and happy hours with your cross functional teams to foster camaraderie.

84% of recruiters are in the process of adapting their hiring processes to facilitate remote exchanges.

Of these, 58% are now using social media networks (e.g. LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram) to connect with potential hires.

Keep your brand active and engaged

Despite the many reasons brands might go quiet during a pandemic, keeping your brand active and engaged is more important than ever. Today's leading brands are going back to the basics by becoming more human. Making a brand more human is essential to gaining trust and building real connections with candidates and customers in a time where we're all more sensitive and isolated than ever. 

Is your brand confused about how to engage in a way that won’t backfire or get lost in the clutter? Here are some tips on instilling a human touch:

  • Implement real-time chat bots to converse and connect with candidates in real time.
  • Showcase your company culture. Does your team support local charities? Do employees get their birthdays off? Share what makes your organization a unique and appealing place to work.
  • Make your candidates feel heard, responded to and respected by being transparent and authentic. Let them know if your recruiting process has changed, and provide a timeline so they'll know when to expect to hear from HR.

94% of candidates say being contacted by their prospective manager can make them accept a job offer faster.

  • Use your social media channels to ‘listen’ to conversations that involve or have an impact on your brand. Follow relevant hashtags and accounts to ensure you’re aware of the latest news and trends so you’re prepared to react or create conversations.

Re-recruit your people

If the pandemic forced you to lay off staff members, it’s important to maintain and nurture those relationships if you plan on bringing those team members back to work. The best thing you can do after being forced to lay off people amid a crisis is to re-recruit staff. Bringing back the employees you laid off, instead of looking for new talent, will show that you care and value their contributions. Ensure you maintain genuine, on-going communications so you don’t lose these relationships. You’ll succeed in building employee loyalty.

There are many opportunities available at your fingertips to start streamlining recruitment as we transition out of this pandemic. Get in touch with us to learn how Recruit Right can help you transform your old recruitment process to recruit effectively.

There’s a Better Way to Recruit.