There is so much variability right now among staffing firms. While many essential industries have been booming since early spring, other industries have slowed down or even stopped hiring altogether. The current economic reality means vastly different things for different businesses.
To put it succinctly, everyone has a unique situation and story right now. And we’re all doing the best we can to keep moving forward.
Whether you think hiring is on pause right now, or whether it’s largely business as usual, there are some consistencies across industries and organizations.
First, we’re all gearing up for things to pick up. While all of us adjust to work in a pandemic, most staffing firms WILL reopen or pick up again. And when that happens, you’ll want to tap into the energy and excitement of that reopening. You’ll want to take advantage and leverage all the momentum possible. But, you’ve got to be ready.
Talent engagement is essential to hit the ground running
When clients come calling for more talent, it’s essential that you have...well...talent ready and eager to get to work! It certainly gets to the heart of “staffing” and our industry, doesn’t it?
Talent engagement is essential as we work and weave our way through our current reality. Keeping talent engaged right now -- even if you don’t have many openings -- ensures you have engaged, qualified talent whenever you are ready to place more candidates.
Back in the spring, we shared some ways to help you stay connected with furloughed employees. There’s some great inspiration here to help you provide value and stay engaged with talent.
Of course, with resources maxed out right now for every staffing firm, you have to find the balance between engaging talent and maximizing productivity. You know it’s something we talk about here on the Sense blog a LOT. Because we know it’s a struggle for many firms. You want to stay engaged with talent, but there are only so many people on payroll and only so many hours in the day.
Thankfully, today’s staffing technology (including, of course, Sense) allows you to keep talent engaged with personalized, relevant communications on their preferred devices (that’s almost always via text). All while actually handing BACK time to your recruiters, rather than stealing some away.
As the PM of the Sense Engage platform, I’m always both teaching and learning from clients on the ways that automation not only can drive productivity across their teams, but to leverage the productivity to power engagement and growth across their firm. Many folks do not see their ATS as a strategic asset - it’s not up to date, it’s hard to maneuver, and it takes a lot of manual effort to find the candidates you need quickly. With an automated engagement platform like Sense, that all changes. Here are just a few ways you can use staffing technology (like Sense) to stay engaged with your talent database and get real results while waiting for things to ramp back up significantly:
Verify important information
When things are slow (or especially when they’re busy!), a clean, up-to-date database makes life a heck of a lot easier for your recruiters (and ultimately helps you deliver better, faster results for your clients).
Outdated or incorrect candidate data is a common “clog” of your ATS. Thankfully, it’s also one of the easiest to fix. And adding icing to the cake, updating that information also helps you keep talent engaged.
To start, consider sending quick texts to talent verifying or updating the following information:
- Mailing address
- New skills
- Any new education/degrees
- Desired roles
As with any texts, remember to keep them short and sweet. Start it off with something personal, like “Hey [NAME], I hope you’re staying safe and doing well! I’m touching base to make sure we’re up to date…” (you can find a bunch of talent texting templates here, too, if you need them!).
And remember, with Sense (or another engagement platform), you can create these messaging templates once, and our technology will automatically add in the name and other pertinent information, pulling from (and if necessary, writing RIGHT BACK to) the appropriate field in your ATS. This happens automatically. 👍
But what kind of actual results can something like this deliver in the real world? Here’s an example from a Sense client, Volt. With just a single engagement campaign, Volt reactivated over 13,000 candidates in their Bullhorn database (!) and updated over 11,000 pieces of contact information. As a result, they submitted 2,600 candidates and ultimately, placed over 150 of them! To learn more insights about how Volt has been leveraging automation and staying engaged with their candidates and talent in this new world of work, you can check out our incredibly popular webinar here!
Just check in
Although most of us are back to work and are trying to operate as normally as possible, the reality is that we ARE going through an extremely difficult time. It’s a pandemic, and the threat of getting sick, stress of not seeing family and more are weighing heavily on many people.
Not only does it help you stay top of mind with talent to check in and see how they’re doing. It’s honestly a really nice thing to do. With one-on-one, human contact at a premium right now, hearing from your staffing firm may make someone smile or be distracted from the stressful stuff. And yes, it also helps keep talent engaged and thinking positively about your staffing firm. A win/win in the truest sense.
As with all of my recommendations in this post, this can be automated. But it doesn’t have to lose its personal touch. And that’s the heart of everything that we do at Sense - automated technology that empowers the personal, human interaction. Templates with short text to check in can be sent from each candidate’s specific recruiter. “Hi [NAME], I know that everyone’s feeling stressed lately. Hang in there! I’m just checking in to see how you’re doing. Is there anything I can help with?”
There’s potential here to update information as noted in the first point (based on responses you might get). Or, you may even end up filling an open req, all from sending a quick check-in. But at a minimum, you keep talent engaged while doing something nice.
In a time where many people feel like they have no control over things, the messages you send can both give talent a feeling of “control,” while also keeping them engaged -- and helping you fill any openings!
Even those of us who are employed know at least one or two people who are looking for work right now. A quick message with hot jobs is a nice way to spread some positivity (job openings!), stay top of mind and potentially place candidates or add new referrals to your talent pipeline.
Hot jobs and job updates are especially important in essential industries that are struggling right now to find and place enough talent to meet demand. GQR/Wynden Stark is another Sense client that successfully implemented some of these suggestions, seeing dramatic results.
Just three weeks after implementing Sense technology, they made their first placement leveraging it in the Healthcare sector. GQR has been called upon by government and state officials to rapidly deliver RN teams for long-term care facilities and other hotspots. Using Sense Engage, GQR was able to rapidly re-engage their network with personalized communications, sharing critical-need job opportunities with them.
Going beyond sharing jobs and information, GQR was also able to quickly identify those professionals who were ready to make a career move. For one assignment, they were able to deliver 120 nurses (!) in less than 10 days!
And it all starts with the right technology partner, plus the right communications.
It’s important to remember again that short and sweet is key here if you’re sending texts. If it takes too long to read your text you not only run the risk of no one reading it, you could lose positive sentiment and even frustrate candidates. So keep them short! Something like, “Hi [NAME], if you’re looking for work or know someone who is, we’ve got a few great jobs open right now. Check them out here (or feel free to FWD this text to whoever!): link.”
If your staffing firm is offering any mentoring, resume workshops, webinars or other opportunities for talent to refresh or step up their game, those can also present some nice opportunities to send short update texts.
The right technology makes ALL the difference.
Can you imagine sending hundreds or even thousands of texts like this manually? It’s impossible! That’s why I get super excited to talk about all the possibilities of automation (and so much more) built into our engagement platform.
Built by staffing industry experts, specifically for staffing firms, Sense has been a game changer for our clients. And we know that, especially in these uncertain times, it can be a game changer for you too. Whether business is booming or you want to get ready for the inevitable day when it is booming again, we’re happy to show you how Sense can help your staffing firm get to the next level.
To learn more about Database Automation, Data Enrichment, Database Cleanup and Database Reactivation with the Sense System of Engagement, schedule a demo with our team to see our tech in action.