Eight Ways to Recruit Today’s Best
By Ken Whiting
It used to be fairly simple and routine. Need to fill a couple of
positions? You simply placed an ad in the local paper, or asked your
current employees if any of their friends were looking for work.
That’s all there was to it, and you could get back to running your
But now that’s changed. Even with current economic conditions, teens
have access to plenty of entry-level jobs, but they want to know
what you’ll do for them before they apply. They are distracted by a
cloud of digital noise, making it hard to get their attention.
Traditional approaches just don’t work, and you may be left with
average, or no employees, while your competition is fully staffed
with motivated, hard working, responsible, and personable teens.
The times and today’s teens have changed, and if you haven’t
adjusted your recruiting approach you’ll continue to come up short.
To ensure you catch their attention, throw out as wide of a net as
possible by using these tactics. The following are eight surefire
ways to attracting the best teens:
1. Can You See Me Now? Visually communicate your message.
Create your own video that highlights the benefits, fun and
friends that will come with working at your company. Utilize music,
colors, movement, and other teens to tell your story. Use this as a
TV commercial on local channels, e-mail to prospective new hires and
schools, and stream on your Web site. You can even upload the video
to YouTube or social networking Web sites.
2. The Need for Speed. Today’s teens are impatient. Keep your
applications short, with just the information necessary to determine
if they are interview-worthy. You can capture additional employment
data if and when you meet with them. Respond to all completed
applications within 24 hours to discuss the next step. If you wait…
they’ll be applying somewhere else.
3. Go Digital. Teens have never known a life without
computers. You should have a Website, with an easy
to-remember name. Prospective employees must be able to complete and
submit their application online.
4. Advertise Online. The Web is a way of life for teens
today. Stay away from the local want advertisements in your daily
paper. That is the last place a teen will look! Instead, use
employment Web sites like Snagajob.com, Teens4hire.org or
Craigslist.org. Most communities have localized Internet employment
sites. Don’t forget social networking sites MySpace and FaceBook. By
the way, it’s all right if you don’t know much about the Web… your
current teen staff does. Ask them for their input and include them
in the process.
5. Go Back to School. You have to earn a teen’s loyalty and
confidence. In addition to job postings that are engaging, utilizing
age-appropriate design and humor to communicate your employment
message is important. Also, get involved. Volunteer your expertise
in the classroom or on campus to build trust. Don’t forget to reach
out to the local home school community.
Send Out the Troops. Create an internal recruitment program
that provides incentives, and motivates your current teen staff to
recruit as many people as possible. It doesn’t have to cost much. Do
not penalize them for success – give them a challenge and let them
go for it! You can also utilize a signing bonus paid directly to
your new hire. It’s a win-win situation when you pay your current
employees to be recruiters, instead of other employment advertisers.
Shop till they Drop. Loyal customers can make energetic
employees. Communicate to your teen customers that you have
positions available and tell them about the benefits they would
receive by being a part of the team. Sell your jobs while you are
selling your products. Be sure it looks like a fun place to work.
Work with Strategic Retail Partners. Find other businesses where
teens shop and hang out. You can build a partnership with these
companies, and let them help you communicate your employment
opportunities. By aligning yourself with select music and clothing
stores, restaurants and movie theatres, you will put your company
name in front of prospective teens. To help connect with retailer,
consider purchasing your employment incentives and prizes from them.
Recruiting the best teens is just the beginning of building a
strong foundation for your business. When more teens apply, only
hire the “best of the best” who are a match for your business
requirements. You’ll improve your retention, have a more motivated
employee base, and keep a young workforce inspired and engaged.
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