HR and recruitment services

The formula for successful recruitment: salary alone isn’t tempting enough

Aldar Reinberk,
Gregor Alaküla
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Although salary isn’t unimportant if you want to attract talent, you need to offer opportunities for growth and think through the details of the recruitment process, using the services of an external expert if need be.

“Recruiters are in a situation where there are qualified candidates, but they aren’t accepting the offers. People think long and hard about whether to leave their existing job,” said Grant Thornton Baltic’s HR advisory manager Airi Neemre on the Äripäev radio broadcast, "Kasvukursil".

“In the past, employers offered a better salary and people made a move quickly but now they realize there are other benefits to expect employers to provide. Salary alone is not enough to hire anyone, although it is important to bear in mind that it is a limiting factor on the lower end. Specialists will weigh carefully whether the company looking to recruit them fits in with their own mission and whether they can grow as individuals there,” added Aldar Reinberk, the CEO of digital business support provider Acty.

Today there is a workforce shortage in the IT sector, and there’s also a deficit among recruiters. A recruiter’s salary may even be comparable to a programmer’s pay, the panellist said. “Having a recruiter is a strong competitive advantage for a company. Without one, it’s hard to bring aboard new people and replace those who leave. One can do one’s own recruiting based on gut feeling but the absence of methodical skills and systems for recruiting  runs a very big risk when filling key positions,” said Reinberk.

Tailored service

Since finding persons with suitable profile and attracting them to leave their current employer requires a minimum of 50 to 60 hours, plus the time expended by the manager on interviews, recruitment service might be better outsourced to a partner. “A good recruiter realizes immediately whom to recruit on the market,” said Reinberk in talking about how external service provider can save time for a company. “We are looking for evidence as to whether the necessary skills have been acquired in their past work experience,” said Grant Thornton Baltic’s in-house recruiter Kätlin Treima on the value added generated by specialists.

For example, establishing a rapport with the candidate must play out in a manner that gets them wanting to respond. “Even if their answer is a no, they could find time to let us know what they think of the proposition. A lot of times when a company reaches out, there’s no reply,“ said Neemre. “There’s a big difference between whether you start talking about your company and your offer right away or start the conversation by recognizing the potential candidate for their accomplishments so far,” he said, sharing one tip for starting the dialogue.

External experts can also help foster a pleasant interview environment and shape sales arguments. If you’re trying to hire someone who is already employed, the sales arguments have to be very firmly in place,” emphasized Neemre. “In addition, we have to ensure that if a person comes in for the interview, there’s a pleasant atmosphere so they would not be nervous and also remember what we talked about after the interview. You have to foster a sense of security in the candidate.”

Your own contribution is also important

“Recruitment is very time-consuming, with 40-50 hours spent on organizing the selection process alone, but if you have to search for suitable candidates on the market and attract them to opt for your offered position, that involves working with data, and additional time spent on targeted communication with them”, the panellists said regarding costs on the recruiting process. Recruiting one candidate may cost 15,000 euros if outsourced, but Reinberk says it can be recouped in a few years with a good hire.

The company’s executive must still contribute to the process even when the service is outsourced. The description of the job and expectations for the candidate have to be carefully considered, only then it is possible to formulate the specific requirements for the candidate.

A manager looking for a subordinate should undoubtedly make an effort to keep the hiring process from becoming too protracted. Once the candidates have been identified, they should be interviewed as soon as possible. “A long recruitment process runs the risk of the candidate being snatched away by someone else. Job-seekers put high value on a speedy process, so managers have to devote their own time accordingly.”

After a successful recruitment, the focus must be on retaining people, and making sure they are not left alone. “A mentor or supervisor is important and, in general, team members also contribute to onboarding process. There has to be a supporting factor because the new person has to feel secure,“ said Treima. “You can’t just show the new employee to their desk and computer, and have them read the employment contract to find out what they are supposed to be doing.”

Also important: making sure that if anyone is leaving or being laid off, they receive support as well. “Those who stay with the company will take note and make their own future decisions accordingly. When an employment relationship ends, people have to be treated with respect and cordiality. They could be offered outplacement counselling and encouragement so that the person feels still valuable.”

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