by Stella Shepard
The Eastern PEI Chamber of Commerce hosted the Rural Recharge Conference during Small Business Week in October.
Danielle Bragge, Co-Founder and President of The Headhunters Recruitment Inc. was a guest speaker during the conference, which was held at Rodd Brudenell River Resort.
The Headhunters has extensive experience in rural recruitment, helping companies source top candidates in communities where the talent pool is smaller.
“My generation planned a career by climbing the corporate ladder one rung at time, but the generations that are coming up behind us go where they need to go based on what they need in their personal life,” says Danielle.
“So, for this generation of workers, there is no such thing as job security and staying with one job for a long time. They often move to another workplace after two years, and that is really challenging because employers are coming to us asking to recruit workers who are willing to stay with a company for five or more years. I tell them that I can’t help. We are not seeing long-term employees. The reality is you might get two great years out of an employee before they move on.
“Increased flexibility, training and development, and making sure staff is feeling valued is huge in retaining staff. Good benefits and reasonable time off will also make the staff feel valued and part of the team.
“Conduct staff surveys to determine what you as the employer can improve on within the workplace. Staff surveys don’t have to be expensive. The survey can provide information about how employees are feeling about the company, and it provides employees with a sense of belonging.
“Gone are the days when employees did one job. Now they are expected to do a little of everything. What skills do they bring to the table? This is going to be important to small businesses. It’s not what employees have done in the past, but more importantly it’s what they can do in the future.
“Personality testing can make such a big difference for smaller businesses. It develops positive relationships between employer and staff and determines if the positions are right for each person.”
When job searchers are looking for:
- A hybrid workplace model that combines in-office and remote work to offer flexibility and support to employees
- Training and development
- Health and safety measures
- A healthy workplace culture
“Shortage of staff is not just a PEI problem, it is a Canada problem,” says Danielle. “It’s challenging to attract staff to rural areas like larger cities can. You need succession planning to bridge the talent you need to get.
“Interviewing has changed. It’s now two people drinking coffee sitting in a room getting to know each other. It’s more about personal storytelling about the company and creating a connection with the person you are interviewing.
“Be very clear about what the candidate is signing on for. Make sure to be precise about their duties and responsibilities and the company culture.
“It’s not only about the employer’s hiring needs. It’s about the candidate and their dream job. Before you hire someone, find out what their needs are and what they are expecting.
“When you make a candidate an offer, share your excitement on the phone or in person and not through email.”
FOR MORE INFORMATION
about The Headhunters, contact Danielle Bragge at 780-784-9877. Visit www.theheadhunters.ca