Final Four: How to Recruit Millennials in Your Workforce (and Retain Them!)

September 30th, 2016 by Veronica Blatt

recruit millennials

Today’s guest blogger is Alana Davis of MAU Workforce Solutions, specializing in staffing, recruiting and outsourcing solutions for employers across the US and around the world through global recruiting partners.

Google Millennials in the Workplace or any other search involving millennials and employment, and there will be no shortage of articles, studies, and other content offering insight and data on how this generation operates in today’s workforce. Fortunately, the older Millennial group has now been in the workforce for five plus years.

Whether you have figured out the magic formula to working with Gen Y in your organization, or are still trying to grasp social media (what’s Snapchat??) and understand how emojis work, as more Millennials join the workforce in the coming years, there are a few key items to consider.

Here are the final four tips to make part of your recruiting and retention strategy.

1. “Meet” them where they are. Since the birth of Facebook, Millennials have been glued to social media. And now, with Instagram, Snapchat, and even Facebook Live, social media is where we spend our time! As an employer, having a presence on social media is crucial. Job seekers not only look to a company’s social media presence to gauge a company’s culture, but they may also use it as a form of communication, such as Facebook posts and messaging, or making comments to an Instagram picture. And you want to be right there, ready to engage! A company may even want to dedicate someone that responds to these forms of communication so not to lose the opportunity to engage potential quality employees!

2. Make the initial application simple. This cannot be emphasized enough! In a recent post, we discussed how our attention span has significantly decreased and is now shorter than that of a goldfish. And this is true for more than just the Millennial generation. As consumers, we have accessibility to quick fixes, solutions, and service. The job seeker wants the same thing, especially when initially applying or showing interest in a position. Try to make the initial application simple by having a short form for the job seeker to fill out with maybe an option to attach his/her resume. Since we know most people apply on mobile devices, the simpler the process is, the more applicants’ attention you’ll keep to finish the initial app.

3. Culture, Culture, Culture! When Millennials are looking for a new opportunity, one of their top priorities is making sure that they will fit in with the company culture. They want to know that they will be able to believe in what they do. This is key both in the recruiting and retention strategy. Use the job description as a way to give snippets of your culture by including the organization’s mission and values. Also, use social media to share the company’s culture with both prospective and current employees. Post pictures of company and community events, office gatherings, or holiday celebrations. This will help the job seeker understand what the work environment might be like, while also reinforcing the culture to current employees.

4. Embrace flexibility. In a recent article from the Charleston Regional Business Journal, Peggy Frazier, global talent acquisition manager of Blackbaud said she is working to recruit recruit millennialsmillennials who want more balance between work and their life outside of it. Because of technology, remote work and working beyond the regular 9-5 hours is possible. More and more job seekers are looking for flexible work and as the job market tightens, employers that embrace the trend will benefit in the long run. Consider evaluating positions in your organization that could be done remotely or with flexible hours. For example, at MAU, many of our professional recruiters work remotely and/or part time, so they can be with their families more. Embracing this type of work not only has been successful from a business perspective but has improved the employee’s job satisfaction!

Hopefully you’re getting a handle on this multi-generational workforce we are all navigating in today’s world. As we continue on this journey, and work to continuously improve our recruiting and retention strategies, consider these final four tips.

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4 Tips to Remember When an Employee Asks for a Salary Increase

August 10th, 2016 by Veronica Blatt

various-world-money-300Today’s guest blogger is Paulette Steele from Real Positions. Based in Queensland, Australia, Real Positions provides specialist recruitment in the real estate, retail, and commercial and industrial sectors. Her post about what to keep in mind when employees are asking about a salary increase is available here:

Picture this! Your employee comes to you one day and wants a salary increase. However, you can’t provide them with a raise or you don’t consider their work efforts entitle them to one.

Has this happened and how do you handle this type of situation?

It’s a delicate matter particularly if you value this employee’s efforts in your business.

How do you approach this without risking, demotivating, and upsetting your employee by not giving them a raise? Or do you give them a salary increase which can result in a financial burden to your business if you can’t see sufficient financial turnover from this employee’s work?

What is the best way to handle this? Here are 4 important tips to remember when one of your employees next asks you for a salary increase:

  • Allow them the opportunity to explain why they believe they deserve an increase in their salary. It may be they are doing a lot more than you thought and that they do more than is in their job description. Some people enjoy taking on extra responsibilities to give them a challenge or because they would be otherwise bored. It could be you need to reconsider?
  • Think about what it would cost you to replace this employee if they ended up leaving. Compare the salary increase with the costs of bringing in someone new to their position. A new person will take time to pick up the responsibilities of the position and find out how your company’s systems work. Every business does things differently! And what if they aren’t as good as the person you let go?
  • If you give them an increase, it should be for what they have accomplished in their work up to now. Don’t simply give them a raise because of what they say they will do for your business in the future. These could just be hollow words spoken to ensure they obtain a salary increase.
  • Are there other alternatives to simply an increase in their salary? Does their position suit a bonus scheme? Some people enjoy having a bonus incentive if they meet or exceed their targets. Also, there are a lot of things that employees value more than money. Could you provide flexible working hours or the ability to work from home part of the time? With technology as it is nowadays, many tasks can be done remotely on a computer from a home.

So, when an employee in your company comes to you next to discuss their salary, consider these important points before making your decision.


Successful Recruiting is Like Golf

June 30th, 2016 by Veronica Blatt

successful recruiting is like golfToday’s guest blogger is John Gilbert from Options Consulting Group. Based in Melbourne, Australia, Options Consulting Group has been supporting industry since 1990. The firm’s business partner/trusted advisor engagement style is complimented by expertise and success in executive, professional and technical recruitment for permanent, interim management and contract roles. John’s thoughts on why successful recruiting is like golf can be found here:

Recruiters use LinkedIn. This isn’t a trade secret. We use it to interact with clients, candidates and to develop possible connections. It’s used to keep up to date with news and as a platform to publish work. However at OCG, we have numerous other tools at our disposal.

John Gilbert – OCG Owner/Principal explains it this way – when playing golf, you don’t use the same golf club every time you hit the ball. You’ll need drivers, putters, woods and irons on every hole to complete the game in the best possible style.

This is the same for small and medium businesses when recruiting. Realistically, you can’t expect to find the best-suited candidate to fill your vacant position by limiting yourself to searching LinkedIn and Seek. You’ll need various methods to identify and source suitable candidates, which is where a recruiter acting as your trusted advisor/business partner becomes even more important.  And we’re yet to touch on interviewing skills, effective applications management and potential negative impact on your employment brand!

Taking Options Consulting Group as an example, we have access to well-developed networks via NPAworldwide, extensive databases and access to selected and relevant job boards – and over 80 years of experience between us. This helps our clients to connect with the best person for the job.

Is this your experience when going alone?


Small and Medium Enterprises (SME’s) have limited time to dedicate to finding the perfect applicant. It may seem easier because you don’t have to explain your business and position to a third party, however, SME’s filling their own staff vacancies are required to complete their own filtering process. This can be time-consuming as you will be setting up meetings, reading CV’s, interviewing and assessing multiple and potentially unsuitable applicants.


Recruiters know what works and what doesn’t. They’ve experienced bogus qualifications, probed on reference checks and know the signs to look for. Experienced recruiters don’t shy away from salary negotiations and have clients’ and candidates’ best intentions in mind. These are some of the key elements when hiring that cannot be overlooked. Being blindsided isn’t an experience anyone wants to have; recruiters know how to handle these situations.


There are multiple resources that your recruiter will have access to. These include personal contacts in relevant industries, paid subscriptions to specialist forums and personal databases that have been added to over the years. OCG has proven processes, quality assurance, and a 12-month candidate care program, ensuring peace of mind.


This is an important element of a successful recruiter. Conducting the recruitment process for the first time can be daunting and filling your own staff and leadership vacancies is no exception.

Feeling like the right questions aren’t being asked in the interview may undermine a candidate’s confidence in the role, the company and runs the risk of alienating the candidate from the opportunity.

When choosing to outsource your recruitment needs, ensure you are working with a company that understands your business environment, processes and competencies for the role – a business partner and trusted advisor who wants to solve your problems rather than sell you a person!

Using the right golf club for each round allows you to strategise your best play. If you would do it on the golf course, do it for your business too!


Manpower Reports Positive Global Hiring for Q3

June 22nd, 2016 by Veronica Blatt

world clocks representing global hiringManpower has released the results of its latest Employment Outlook Survey. For the upcoming three months, global hiring is expected to grow in 40 of the 43 countries surveyed. However, growth is many of these areas is expected to be slower than the previous quarter as well as on a year-over-year basis. Following are some highlights from the survey results:

The Americas

  • The strongest hiring outlooks were reported in Guatemala and the United States. Construction, services, and agriculture are especially strong sectors in Guatemala, while in the United States, growth is anticipated in both the leisure/hospitality and wholesales/retail trade sectors.
  • Canadian employers expect to see growth in all areas except mining. Depressed energy prices appear to be causing overall slower hiring on a year-over-year basis.
  • Brazil’s slow hiring is expected to further deepen. This continues a trend that started in Q4 2011, with employer confidence dropping to its lowest level (again) since 2009.

Asia Pacific

  • Nearly 15,000 employers in eight countries participated in the survey. While there is expected to be some hiring activity across the board, momentum is slowing across the region.
  • Once again, employers in India report the strongest hiring plans, with more than one-third of employers expecting to increase payrolls during the quarter. The strongest sectors look to be services and transportation/utilities.
  • Like Brazil, hiring plans have weakened in China in all industries and sectors in comparison to both the previous quarter as well as last year. The largest declines are in finance, insurance, and real estate.
  • Taiwan is reporting increased hiring in the upcoming quarter after five consecutive quarters of decreases.


  • Hiring forecasts are mixed across the region with increases expected in half of the countries participating in the survey and decreases in seven. Growth is expected to be slower than last year.
  • A strong manufacturing sector in Romania helps position that country with the most optimistic outlook for the upcoming quarter, buoyed by similar strength in construction.
  • The hiring outlook remains positive in the UK despite the turmoil associated with the “BRexit” referendum. The best opportunities for job seekers will be in construction, finance/business services, and utilities.
  • Employers in Italy and Switzerland are reporting flat hiring for the upcoming quarter.

What global hiring activity are you seeing in your niche? Comment below!

Re-Recruiting Your Top Talent the Right Way

June 15th, 2016 by Veronica Blatt

Image of Jane Prugh, guest blogger about employee retentionToday’s guest blogger is Jane Prugh with Corporate Strategic Resourcing  located in Chicago, Illinois (USA). Corporate Strategic Resourcing team delivers top IT and IS talent with the highest quality service and uncompromising professionalism and business ethics to small, medium, and large size companies. Her post about creating a strong employee retention program is available here:

Company loyalty is on life support these days. Downsizing, mergers and workforce redistributions have allowed Generations X and Y to become very comfortable with the notion of frequent job changes. This new culture can be a huge obstacle to retention efforts if a comprehensive plan is not put into place.

An organization can no longer trust loyalty to keep their team intact. This can be only achieved through a great retention program. Creating a culture of continuously re-recruiting existing staff is essential. The first step in a great program is to creating clearly defined goals for retention. This goal should include a percentage of top-performing employees to be retained each year.

The employer/employee relationship needs to be consistently nurtured. The second step in creating an employee retention program is to determine which relationships are most critical. Top talent is not always actively seeking new opportunities, but they are on the competitor’s radar. This list should include top talent that consistently meet or exceed expectations. Periodically revisit this list for new additions.

The next step in the process is conducting “stay interviews.” This is not the same as a performance evaluation. The goal of this process is to identify and minimize triggers that might cause someone to consider leaving. It is also a great way to test the temperature of the team. A stay interview may also be conducted when there is a new opportunity within the organization that this team member is being considered for. This interview should be no more than an hour and should feel like a conversation. While this may feel awkward for both the manager and employee, over time it will become second nature. For a great outline and possible questions check out this article from

The final step is to create a personalized employee retention plan. Use the information gathered in the stay interview to craft a retention plan for each person on the list of top talent to retain. This plan should include goals, measures for success and should assign people who are responsible for each aspect of the plan. It should also include any compelling offers presented to the employee during the stay interview. These offers could be more opportunities for professional development, flexible work hours or telecommuting options.

These four steps to retention will help identify, re-recruit and retain talent. It is important to view an organization’s employee retention plan as a living document. Stay interviews should be conducted periodically. Offers will need to be refreshed with each re-recruiting effort. Revisiting the individual retention plans and the employee retention program as a whole will keep it fresh and up to date with the latest changes in talent attraction in the organization’s specific industry.


Using Benefits to Recruit Top Talent

June 3rd, 2015 by Dave Nerz

signing-a-contractRecruiting top talent is becoming more difficult. One recruitment tool being leveraged to recruit top talent is benefits. A March 2015 SHRM survey reports that employers are tuned into benefits as a recruitment tool. More frequently employers are using their benefits packages as the reason for someone to change jobs.

Employers realize that as basic needs are met in the area of salary expectations, one of the key differentiators available is the completeness and generosity of benefits. Top talent may need more than just the next good job to leave the current situation and move to a new employer. The recruitment of top talent requires some creativity and since most are well compensated from a base pay perspective, the benefits become the draw that will allow them to improve total compensation when moving to a new employer.

Employers report that they will be leveraging a collection of employee benefits more significantly in the years ahead. This continues the trend reported in the survey of using benefits to recruit in recent years. Some of the benefits seen as most important to recruitment efforts are

  • Performance and career development benefits
  • Healthcare benefits
  • Retirement benefits
  • Wellness and preventative benefits
  • Flexible work arrangements benefits
  • Family-friendly benefits
  • Leave benefits

It is obvious that strong knowledge of market compensation is a first step in successful recruitment of talent. That knowledge is more easily gained by salary surveys and the use of effective independent recruiting resources. A good independent recruiter is often able to get accurate details on current compensation as well as desired salary and bonus to attract top talent. Recruiters with industry specialization can offer details on similar placements in recent months. Benefits are a bit more elusive and may require benchmarking to understand the competitiveness of an employer’s complete offering. Adding to the complexity of using benefits to recruit is that not all candidates value all benefits equally. Depending on age, career stage, family situations, the importance of each benefit could vary. In pre-employment situations it is difficult to gauge the relative importance of each benefit without approaching dangerous discriminatory questions. In many cases employers must work with generalizations about the importance of benefits to provide a great package for the candidate to evaluate based on his or her situation. So, there is cost and time invested in benefits that have limited value to the candidates being recruited.

For results from this survey or more SHRM surveys go to SHRM SURVEYS. There are many great insights there that employers can consider for their campaigns to recruit top talent.

When do you think benefits enter into a candidates evaluation process for a job? Is it early on or only after then are ready to make the change of employers?

Image courtesy of Naypong at

7 Questions for Finding an International Recruiter

April 24th, 2015 by Dave Nerz

businessman-world-map-wallMany employers do not like working with recruitment companies. In markets that employers know well and have social media connections, perhaps it is possible to avoid independent recruiters or at a minimum reduce the dependence on outside agents.  When the needs of  companies expand beyond a local market and into countries where there is no physical presence, recruitment agencies may be the only way to achieve the results that are needed. What are some great things to know when you go searching for international recruiting expertise? Consider these basic questions to identify the strong players from those who may waste your time and money:

1. How does your fee structure work?
There are many different approaches that recruiters use. If you have a real and immediate need opt for paying some sort of engagement fee or retainer so that you know that your opening will get some attention. As you can imagine, if you are working with a 100% contingent international recruiter, then the easy jobs and the higher fee jobs get that recruiter’s attention first. Change the rules by asking — and paying — for a minimum number of hours applied to your job each day to week.

2. Does your firm have partners and connections where we are hiring?
It is often desirable to make a connection to a local recruiter with international connections rather than searching for a recruiter in the market where you have a one-off need. Develop a relationship with someone in your time zone, who speaks your language, where you can meet them for coffee or have a meeting to hold them accountable for results. Have a relationship that is more than a single transaction. Opt for a relationship that gets leveraged around the world for your benefit, but keeps you grounded right where you are.

3. What is the most common source of the candidates you place?
Try to find international recruiters who are recruiting (we used to call it headhunting) and not just doing LinkedIn searches. Having said that, a LinkedIn account does not make any employer a good or effective recruiter. Locating names is easy; selling people on making changes to their lives as significant as leaving one employer and moving to another is not easy work. It is even more difficult for the hiring company to be seen as an impartial coach or motivator of change. Sometimes the recruiter can do what even very talent hiring managers cannot. Also, look for recruiters with connections to a group of peers. You want the best candidate available not just the best candidate in their database. More like the best candidate in 20 or 30 recruitment companies’ databases.

4. How long will it take you to provide me a short list of 5 candidates?
If they answer this question without asking you 10 or 15 clarifying questions…run! A short list of 5 could take 1 hour or 1 year. The recruiter needs to understand the requirements of the job and the fit characteristics that will make someone a top performer in your company. They need to be a partner and not a vendor, so start treating the recruiter you select that way.

5. Can you tell me about international placement you have done or your affiliates/partners have done?
Examples or success are a good predictor of future success. Not every recruiter you connect with will have partners and connections and be able to share success stories. The ones who are capable will know others who are successful and have made international placements.

6. Does your firm belong to an international network or association of any type?
Ask what organizations they belong to. If they do not belong, then this show a lack of commitment or focus on what you are defining as necessary to support your search. They may have developed networks and connections independently…if so, they need to share some details on how they remain relevant in the market they hope to search for you.

7. Ask if they know what time it is in the market where you will be hiring or if they have a way to find that out.
If the recruiter doesn’t know how to track time globally, you might have the wrong recruiter. It is Communication 101 and everyone needs to know the country code and the current time in order to communicate. Tough to recruit someone if you are calling at 3AM. It seems silly, but it shows basic awareness and past experience in one quick question.

There are many more you can add. In the end, it is about building a partnership and developing trust. The big things to take away are: look at the need creatively, you may find someone locally that has connections where you need to be, look for the ability to communicate examples of personal/partners success stories, and find someone who is doing recruiting not just list building.

5 Reasons to Avoid Recruiting on LinkedIn

September 2nd, 2014 by The Imagination Factory

image of LinkedIn, a tool used by agency recruitersRecently, I read a post on the New York Times’ You’re the Boss blog, entitled Why I Do All My Recruiting on LinkedIn. Employers will read this and some of them will think, “Wow! That’s a GREAT idea! I should totally stop using a third-party recruiter and do all of MY recruiting on LinkedIn, too!” Here are just a few reasons why that is a foolish approach:

1. The people you REALLY want may not be there. Yep, it’s true. Regardless of what you hear, *everyone* isn’t on LinkedIn. If you’re only sourcing for candidates on LinkedIn, you are limiting yourself to the best talent ‘on’ the market, when you really want the best talent ‘in’ the market. No matter how good the tool, you can’t find what isn’t there.

Read the rest of this entry »

10 Reasons Employers Should Use Independent Recruiters

May 7th, 2013 by npa

man-holding-megaphoneI think the saying is “preaching to the choir”  or “preaching to the converted.”  Get ready because here I go.

Your clients are being sold on filling jobs without the help of independent recruiters.  There was an article in the NY Times titled Why We Never Use Professional Recruiters and I think some companies are likely to listen to this message because it gives them a false sense of confidence in what they can achieve without the cost of your service.  While this may seem like “preaching to the converted,” I am hoping you can use some of my arguments with those that are crazy enough to confide in you that they are planning to go it alone.  If you have a favorite way to overcome this foolish client behavior, please share your story by commenting on this blog post. Read the rest of this entry »

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