Published: January 16, 2018 | Comments
Filling open roles in a small contact center can be tough. Small contact centers often compete for talent with more sizable organizations that have bigger budgets, better benefits, and brand awareness, among other things. If that weren’t enough, small contact centers can lack redundancy, causing the entire team to feel the pain when there is a position to fill. This creates a sense of urgency just to get a body in the seat.
While these can be legitimate challenges for leaders of small contact centers, they are not reasons to accept status quo. Here are a few tips to help your small contact centers attract big talent.
Build Your Reputation
One of the most important things you can do to recruit and retain employees is create a team culture where people want to work – one that involves teamwork, trust, communication, appreciation, and purpose.
What else makes your contact center a great place to work? Many candidates want to work for a company that will invest in professional growth and development, so consider how you might help your employees grow and develop. Are there opportunities within your organization for employees to get involved with special projects? Aside from an amazing culture and professional development opportunities, what other perks can you offer? Can you accommodate a flexible schedule, allow work from home, or offer time off for employees to do volunteer work?
Before you have an open role, start building employer brand awareness. In partnership with your HR and marketing teams, leverage social media to showcase all the things that make your team and company unique. Be sure to share your great team culture, training offerings, promotions, awards, and charity events. You can also show what success in your organization looks like, introduce current employees, and promote your commitment to career development and training. Encourage employees to post and share, too!
Know What You Need
A small contact center can give agents a place to shine and quickly increase their responsibility – which is what many Millennials want. But keep in mind, small contact centers are not for everyone. Hiring the wrong agents will quickly kill your small team’s culture and prolong everyone’s misery. A bad hire who does not fit with your existing culture leads to poor quality work, low job satisfaction, an unhealthy environment, and ultimately turnover.
Take time to understand what skills your contact center currently needs. Your needs may have changed since the last time you hired. Recognize the skills and traits required for success in your contact center, then create a persona that represents the ideal candidate. The persona will be used in recruiting and by the interview team.
Next, review your job description. When was the last time you updated it? Is the job title accurate? Does the description reflect your ideal candidate persona? Is the tone boring and tired or upbeat and energetic? You may need to re-write your job description so it reflects who you are and what you need. And be sure to spell out what’s in it for the ideal candidate. Be creative - consider including graphics or videos in your job description and include links to your employer social media pages.
Filling positions in this candidate driven market is becoming more expensive and it takes longer. Since turnover is inevitable, you should always be recruiting. If you can build relationships ahead of demand, you will maintain a strong candidate pool to pull from as the need arises.
Don’t spend too much time with the traditional job boards, which often yield much junk. To successfully recruit A-players, focus on the passive job seekers. According to Glassdoor, 89% of users are either actively looking for jobs or would consider better job opportunities. You will find these folks at meetups, in social media groups, and on Instagram and LinkedIn, among other places. Establish relationships with local colleges, particularly the career center and entrepreneurship and athletics departments. These folks want to help students find great career opportunities. Of course, be sure current employees in your organization also know about open positions so they can share with family and friends.
Before an interview, use cognitive and personality assessments to see if the candidate has the skills for the job. Then, when you interview, you can truly interview for cultural fit. Assessments will give you a clear idea of which candidates will be successful in your organization and help managers know how to coach the employee when they first start.
Small contact centers should be prepared for the inevitable turnover. When you build your employer reputation and promote it, understand the traits of an ideal candidate, and are resourceful in recruiting, you will more easily attract big talent to your small contact center.
What's worked well for your small contact center? Share your experiences in the comments.