At the time of writing, the world is just starting to tentatively celebrate the various positive news stories around the coronavirus vaccine. It’s finally looking less like 2021 won’t be another year or disruption and dread. We’ve all learnt a lot in the last nine months or so about how to adapt and survive in our various job roles and personal lives. At Bramwith we have had to change many of the ways we work, both internally and externally. Helping our clients and candidates navigate new recruitment processes and doing all we can to help them get the results they need.
This article examines the ways in which companies have changed the way they source candidates during the pandemic and how they have managed the selection and onboarding process. Read on to discover some of the trends in hiring processes during lockdown and whether these are here to stay.
Tighter controls and limits on the pool of candidates
Many businesses we have spoken to have been too overwhelmed with disruptions from the pandemic that they have needed to scale back on the number of candidates they’ve been able to consider. Some have also chosen to limit their search geographically due to social distancing and movement restrictions. This trend is not necessarily one that we think will endure beyond the pandemic. Business leaders want the best talent after all, and candidates may be more willing to travel outside cities or to other areas due to shortages of work or wanting a change in lifestyle.
Managing unprecedented changes in interview processes
Pretty much all of us have had to manage important meetings via Zoom or Teams. Many of us have also had to conduct interviews or be interviewed ourselves - and it is a challenge. There is just so much potential for disruptions in communication when video conferencing. But we have seen some amazing resilience from both clients and candidates when dealing with this and it is certainly a situation where your strength of character can shine through. It may not be the ideal way to interview or be interviewed, and hopefully, it’ll become less prevalent in 2021 and beyond, but for now, all ambitious candidates should prepare for this eventuality and all considerate recruiters who want the top talent should aim to make their virtual video interviews as engaging and comfortable as possible.
Adjusting to changes in the screening process
This follows on from the above point. The need to interview remotely has led to some employers changing their approach and priorities when it comes to screening candidates. This includes the following;
The need to adapt to onboarding candidates remotely
In addition to the challenges posed by hiring remotely, managers now have to adapt to onboarding candidates from home. This is no easy task but it’s one we have seen plenty of clients do well at. Making sure you don’t cut corners with welcoming your new starter is vital. That includes good introductions on the intranet, company comms and virtually where appropriate and possible. It also means ensuring that the training is as comprehensive as it would be if it was done face to face. Like many aspects of being a good manager, the best way to find out if you’re getting it right is to ask for feedback. Everyone is dealing with a lot of extra pressure at the moment and if your hastily-pieced-together remote welcome pack isn’t up to scratch then your new recruit will probably be able to understand why. But once they have settled in, ask them what they would have liked done differently and put it in place for next time so the process can improve. And hopefully, in not too much time, we can look forward to working alongside one another again.
That is just a small selection of the ways we have seen companies change their hiring processes in lockdown and whether we think they will be permanent fixtures in the future. Like so many things nowadays, we simply do not know for sure. Whether it takes six months or six years to get back to ‘normal’ we know for sure that both the best candidates and most successful businesses will need to be resilient and adaptable. Which are great attributes to offer your team at any time - good or bad.
We’d love to hear how your business has been getting on during this testing time, or how you as a candidate have fared with a new interview and recruitment processes. Let us know on our social media or give us a call. And if you’re looking for a new challenge in your career or if you’re a business leader and want to grow your team, give us a call. We are experts in procurement and supply chain recruitment and we can help.
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