It’s easy for clients to get impatient if you’re not sending them shortlists of top talent every day. But when you’re working a candidate-short market, this is added pressure you don’t need!So what can you do to cut yourself some slack and stay in your client’s good books throughout the recruitment process?
It’s all about educating them on the challenges you’re up against and giving them total transparency about the current market – here’s how…
Use data to back yourself up
Simply telling your clients the market is short of candidates and expecting them to believe you isn’t enough. Without evidence to back up your claims, how can they get to grips with the situation?
Showing them data and market examples is a great way to make the talent shortage more tangible and easy to understand.
Dive into your CRM and pull out reports that show the number of vacancies currently in their industry vs. candidates with the experience they’re looking for at the salary they’re offering. This is evidence they can’t ignore!
Example roles from job boards also make strong evidence – pull up the number of competing job listings relevant to their niche or industry currently being advertised. When they see their roles stacked against the hundreds of others out there, they’ll start to understand the competition they’re facing.
Create content around their pain points
Educating your clients on the candidate shortage takes more than a simple explanation. You need to convince them you're well-versed in dealing with market change. But how? Create content that focuses on their paint points.
This could be writing topical blog content on how the market is looking right now, publishing salary reports to help them know their place on the market or laser focusing in on the precise challenges your client’s industry is up against.
Use high value content as a platform to explore their problems in depth and position yourself as an authoritative voice in the industry. Your clients will begin to see you as a trusted resource and will stick with you for their hiring needs.
Manage their expectations when taking the job on
There’s nothing worse than over-promising and under-delivering when working with a client. So instead of taking on a job and promising you’ll send over a bunch of perfect candidates by the next day, manage their expectations by giving them a realistic prediction of how long it will take because there’s a skills shortage.
Be upfront about how the current market looks and talk over the challenges you are likely to face when sourcing for their role. This will make them more likely to set realistic timeframes and could even convince them to be more open-minded about the candidates you do send their way.
And while it’s good to be upfront, it’s crucial to show your client you’re an expert at what you do and that you’re equipped with the tools and knowledge to source candidates despite the challenges. Instead of talking hot-air, use examples from recent roles you’ve filled – this is proof that you’ve been recruiting throughout the candidate shortage.
Speak their language
You might be a pro at switching between phrases like ‘candidate-heavy’, ‘job-rich’ and ‘candidate-short’ every time the market changes, but your client won’t necessarily understand this type of lingo and how it impacts them.
Your job is to educate your client, not confuse or intimidate them, so avoid flowery language full of industry jargon. Instead, speak to them in terms they’re more likely to understand and explain any industry-specific language you do use. That way, you’ll always know you’re on the same page.
Provide regular updates
Ghosting your clients because you can’t face telling them you still don’t have the right candidate for them is never the way to play it. It’s better to provide regular updates before your client calls – this shows you’re on-the-ball and working hard in the background.
In a talent shortage, the hiring process will always take more time, so don’t be afraid to give specific details which part of the process you’re working on and why it’s taking longer. It’s all about transparency.
Give your client regular updates and they’ll know you’re busy sourcing the in-demand candidates they are looking for. And the moment you send over your shortlist, they’ll soon forget about any teething problems along the way! Not only will they be impressed by your service, but also your honesty.
Download the eBook below for tips on how to recruit in a candidate-short market.
Awesome Aussie Beth is an experienced recruiter and Growth Executive here at Firefish. She has a huge love of the industry and a real passion for helping recruiters to change the way they recruit.