Hiring Troubles in America

Has the table turned on easy recruitment?

Portrait of a proud cafe worker

It has been almost a decade since we have heard recruiters saying “you are going to have to pay more if you want to hire.” Recently in America, even at the low end of the wage scale, all types of workers are in demand.

HRM Canada does a wonderful job summarizing what American employers are doing to attract workers to the fast food industries which include:

  • Using professional recruiters
  • Extra days off
  • Paying above minimum wage
  • Free meals
  • And referral bonus

These are the types of hiring strategies and recruitment incentives that were used for high paying and hard to recruit jobs including high-tech or specialized medicine positions. Not so anymore; the lowly burger flipper now is in demand and can demand more in wages and employment perks.

What is happening? Well, it is all about the unemployment rate, which is at a rate of 4.7% in the USA; near a nine-year low. This means that the U.S. economy is close to full capacity and if employers want to hire an employee they will have to entice that employee to join them over the competition. It is a demand market for workers.

Some HR professionals have never had to experience what it is like to try and recruit in a demand market. Their HR work experience has been limited to 2008 forward when it has been relatively easy to hire workers, especially at the minimum wage level jobs. HR has to be aware that what happens in the U.S. economy usually happens in the Canadian economy. HR should now start thinking about how we keep the employees we have and what the new recruiting strategies are that will be needed in a full capacity economy. It is better to plan now than wait for the hiring crisis to happen.

Discussion Questions

  1. You work in the HR department for Tim Horton’s in Canada. Research the employment levels currently in Canada. What are they? What is considered full employment in the Canadian context?
  2. You have been asked to develop recruitment and retention strategies for Tim Horton’s. Prepare a 5 min presentation for you VP of HR.

How to Make Your Recruitment Mark!

Businessman in suit with two hands in position to protect the word "BRAND"

Marketing skills for HR Professionals

Branding, value proposition, internal marketing plans; these words do not commonly roll off the tongues of HR professionals. This is the kind of language one hears in a first year marketing class not in the HR department. According to HRM Canada and the Harvard Business Review (HBR) HR professionals better listen and read up on the importance of employee branding in recruitment success.

HRM Canada provides a short video clip on the benefits of employment branding.

Click here to watch the video clip. 

According to HRM Canada employment branding gives your company:

  • A competitive advantage
  • A recruitment marketing plan
  • An employee value proposition

Employment Branding has the goal of becoming a magnet to the potential employee. Isn’t branding just fancy jargon for recruitment? The research is saying no.

Where is the HR Department for all of this activity? Well, the research is showing it is not leading the charge. According to HBR 60% of CEO’s state that developing an employee value proposition belongs to C-suite, not HR. Also, since social media is now becoming a strong influence over recruitment, organization’s marketing departments are taking more and more responsibility for employee branding.

Click here to read an article on employment branding.

HR Departments have been fighting the image of being a transactional department and are striving to become a strategic business partner. Employee branding and recruitment are fundamental activities and HR should be front and centre leading these activities. Perhaps it is time for HR Departments to step up and dust of those first year marketing textbooks.

Discussion Questions

  1. Research what the core elements of an employment branding program are.
  2. In a large organization, who do you think should be responsible for employee branding? How do you support your opinion?
  3. Research a company that is a leader in employee branding. What did they do to get that kind of recognition?


How to Stop Your Employees from Quitting

Fifty percent of the time your employees will not make their one year anniversary.

Source: GalaStudio/Shutterstock
Source: GalaStudio/Shutterstock

One year, five year, ten year work anniversaries; these are important milestones that are becoming rare in the working world. Retention of employees is always a number one concern for any HR professional. HR retention specialists speak of many different strategies on why your employees quit and how to prevent them from leaving.

The Harvard Business Review (HBR) does not ask why your employees are leaving your organization? The question they recommend you consider has something to do with time? Any ideas?

Click here to watch a video from the Harvard Business Review.

Did the video surprise you? The question that is important to ask is when are your employees quitting? According to the HBR most employees are quitting on their one year anniversary and then continue to quit on further work anniversaries. Harvard research is not sure why this is occurring, but it is. The next question HR departments must ask themselves is what strategies do we have to prevent the anniversary quitter?

Discussion Questions:

  1. Your Company’s CEO has just watch this video and has requested a meeting with the HR department. It is the CEO’s expectation that the HR Department will present specific ideas to reduce the number of anniversary quitters.
  2. What ideas will you present at that meeting?