Attracting New Recruits

attracting new recruits

On last week’s UK Hospitality Forum Clubhouse discussion, I was asked about attracting new recruits.

Why is this important now?

For many businesses, plans are now underway for re-opening; which is brilliant news. But it would be naïve to think we can just pick up where we left off.

Team members who have been on furlough for anything from 4 months to maybe even 14 months will be experiencing all sorts of emotions.

Whilst some will be relieved they have a job to come back to, or looking forward to  seeing all their colleagues again, others may be suffering from survivor’s remorse, be worried about how the job has changed, or sad to leave new-found ways of spending their time.

Before I get onto the subject of attracting new recruits, the main part of the conversation centred on engaging your team post lockdown.

With this in mind I am running a free webinar next week on

How to Re-engage Your Team After Furlough

Wednesday 10th March, 10.30 – 11.15

If you’d like to get ahead of the game and start getting your team ready for their return join me then by registering here via Eventbrite:


Attracting New Recruits

The past year has given people plenty of time for reflection. It’s possible some of your most loyal team members have had other thoughts about their career. Is their current role (or redefined role) really what they want?

If this is the case you may find yourself needing to recruit, either now or as you get back to full capacity.

So, back to the question: how to attract new recruits?

Here are 8 factors to help you get started with attracting new recruits and getting the best fit for your business.

1. Be a place people want to work

You can’t create a culture overnight where the best employees will want to work, but ensure you are doing everything to retain your reputation as a good employer.

Your existing team should be your greatest advocates;  if they feel valued they are far more likely to recommend you to others and spread the word that it’s a great place to work. So, continue to maintain communication and engagement with your existing team.

What does it mean to work for you? Ask your existing employees for their perspective of what they value about working for you, so you can share this with prospective employees.

2. Your purpose

You’ll want to attract people who will fit well into your business; people who resonate with your purpose and values. The more you can demonstrate these in your recruitment process, the more likely it is to get a good match.

It’s quite possible this has changed over the last 12 months; now is the perfect time to review this, and of course share this with your existing team too.

3. Career path

Demonstrate in your recruitment there’s potential to grow and develop. This means you’re more likely to attract people who see this as a potential longer-term career move, rather than somebody who is simply desperate for any job.

4. The role

It’s all too easy to focus on replacing like for like. When you have a vacancy it might be an ideal opportunity to restructure to open up opportunities for your existing loyal team members, and potentially giving you more flexibility in terms of potential candidates that can fulfil the new role.

Even if you keep the role as it is, upskill and cross train your existing team, so you have the flexibility amongst the team, and you’re not left in the lurch if you can’t recruit straightaway.

5. Transferable skills

What other industries employ people with suitable transferable skills? Rather than focusing on experience in similar roles, put the emphasis on these transferable skills, so you can widen the net to attract people from other industries.

Introducing some fresh blood can bring some fresh perspectives and ideas.

6. Be specific

There are certainly plenty of people at the moment looking for work. So there is a potential danger you will be inundated with hundreds of applicants for any one role. But if none of those are suitable, that doesn’t really help much. So be specific about the attributes and attitudes you want for the role, so you are only attracting the most suitable candidates.

If you want someone enthusiastic, dynamic and lively make your ad enthusiastic, dynamic and lively too! You’re not looking to attract anyone who’s desperate for a job; make it clear what you’re looking for and who fits the bill of the ideal candidate.

7. An inside job

Let your existing team members know of any positions you’re recruiting for.

Even if this is not a step up, it may present a new challenge for one of your existing team to keep them motivated or stretched.  And people know people like themselves, so they are well placed to share details of the vacancy.

If you do have internal applicants treat them in the same way as your external ones – acknowledging receipt of their application, interviews, offer letters, salary details, etc.  If internal candidates do not get the job ensure you give feedback to help with their development and to encourage them to apply for future positions.

8. No regrets

Start your induction process at the point they accept your job offer. Let them know how much you are looking forward to them coming to work for you.

Drip feed information that lets them know that they’re going to get a warm welcome. This might include a background to your business, your values and what’s important to you, current topical information, your reopening plans, an invitation to any team building/events/social activities happening between now and their start date, a copy of their induction programme and the point of contact for day one.

Doing all this before they start will make them feel more welcome and minimise that risk of any second thoughts.

Take Action

If you only do one thing: Talk to each of your team members well ahead of their return date to check how they are feeling and if they have any concerns about coming back to work.

Related article:  How to Attract, Recruit and Retain Great Staff

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