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5 things talent acquisition and recruiting teams can do when hiring is slow

As a member of Textio’s Customer Success team, my days are spent working with customers, helping to facilitate the adoption of Textio across organizations, and getting teams excited about writing more intentionally. On any given day, my team is holding onboarding and workshopping sessions, having strategic conversations about goals, contributing to the implementation of a cohesive workflow, and sharing tips and best practices within the platform.

We are committed to helping our partners write more intentionally and inclusively and are big believers in the power of language to create change.

Lately though, in addition to these conversations, many customers have been asking for our input on what their talent and recruiting teams can be doing to stay busy and productive—particularly if hiring has stalled in the short term. For companies that have already committed to being intentional and inclusive with their language, here are some areas to focus on that will ensure you’re not losing momentum.

Conduct an employer brand audit

Is your company showing up in the market the way you want it to? Right now, people are extra aware of how companies are treating their employees. If there have been layoffs at your organization, were they handled compassionately by leadership? Is the focus on the bottom line, or keeping people safe? Have the company values shifted to align with employees’ needs right now? Your company’s actions—and how they are communicated—play an important role in building your employer brand in people’s minds. And when you are ready to hire again, folks will remember!

Take a look through your recent public and candidate communications. If there are opportunities to improve your brand language to better reflect these times, your talent team will have a lot of helpful insight and should be brought into the process. They are experts at understanding how certain values resonate more or less with candidates and can provide strategic intel in these conversations.

Optimize hiring content

Just because your teams may not be writing dozens of job descriptions right now, doesn’t mean that there isn’t plenty of hiring-writing to do. Candidate qualifications and role responsibilities are necessary parts of a job description, but there’s so much more to writing an impactful job post, and now is the time to get those other elements right.

Data shows us that job postings that focus on the culture of a company resonate more with job seekers, and they’re statistically more likely to engage. When you’re using thoughtful language to differentiate your organizational culture, people notice.

Take the time to create powerful Equal Opportunity and reasonable accommodation statements, and polish your company’s EVP. Mention a few key employee benefits. Paint the picture about what it’s like to be an engaged employee at your organization and show more than just the job. And now, as ever, it’s important to be aware of and mitigate unconscious bias that may be surfacing in your talent language.

Identify upskilling opportunities

Now is the time to take advantage of your team’s many strengths and understand continued learning opportunities. Are there webinars that would be impactful for them to attend, or perhaps D&I or unconscious bias trainings that would be beneficial? Many leaders at top companies are offering free content and resources to aid others in times of uncertainty.

Consider having your talent teams provide a workshop to other areas of the company and leverage their insights. A focus on communicating with resilience and empathy is front of mind for many, and your talent teams already understand the importance of being intentional with language—perhaps this is an area where much of the company can learn together, with the talent team taking the lead.

Ensure alignment in company values

Textio has found that many organizations do not incorporate their company values into their hiring language. This introduces a huge disconnect between the company you are internally and what you want to project externally. Take this time to ensure your job description templates align to what you are communicating on your company homepage and career page. Is teamwork a company value? Integrity? Trust? Make sure those words and sentiments show up in your job descriptions.

A candidate will spend the most time looking at the job description itself, so ensuring your company’s values are clearly articulated will help attract candidates who will align with your organization.

Organize your job library

Chances are your job library could use a good clean up. Now is a great time to task talent teams with auditing what they’ve written. If you use Textio, this will ensure the platform’s guidance is being leveraged as best as possible and will optimize your documents for easy reuse in the future. When hiring picks up again, you want your team to be primed and ready to go!

When thinking about tidying your Textio library, consider the following:

  1. Add Job Title, Job Type, and Location to any postings that may be missing this information. Tagging each document with this information will allow Textio to offer the most nuanced insights based on these factors.
  2. Change document status to shared or finished if the Textio Score meets your internal guidelines (Textio’s recommendation is 90 or above). Shared is great for when multiple people are collaborating on a document, or if a recruiter is working with the hiring manager on revisions. Finished documents lock down further edits and create a score and tone time stamp of date completed. Keeping high-quality documents in Shared and Finished mode will ensure the best and most impactful language is living in your central library, where the whole team can benefit.
  3. Delete documents with a Textio score of less than 20. It’s likely these are partially written drafts that someone forgot about. Remove these from your Textio platform to reduce clutter and improve overall averages.
Remember, your talent and recruiting teams are essential to the health of the business, and even now can be doing work invaluable to the success of the company. Keep busy with things you care about and keep advancing the work of D&I efforts within your organization. It’s more important than ever that work is viewed through a lens of inclusivity and compassion.
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