Joel dandrea

Joel Dandrea, Chief Executive Officer, SC&RA. 

As we go about exploring ever-enticing ways to attract skilled workers, we may at times get caught up in the moment – following certain trends that encourage us to do just about anything to get their attention.

Take trade shows or employment fairs for example. Most of us can picture in our heads quite a few booths where the companies are literally letting it all hang out – akin to a circus atmosphere – with just about every gimmick imaginable, each booth trying to outdo the other.

But is that what you’re after, truly? The potential worker who, like a moth to a flame, was bedazzled by the shiny thing, the spinning wheels, the free swag, the chance at a hole-in-one? After all, what type of person is going to choose your company based on its carnival appeal? Chances are, probably not a serious one.

Truthfully, the serious ones are probably avoiding these situations entirely, and instead searching for companies that offer up real information about real opportunities – not just hourly rates and sign-on bonuses.

These types have likely already done their research on you, and are here because they’re informed, want to land a career and seek stability, mutual respect and growth. These types understand themselves and know what they want from an employer. They’re going to know where and how to find the right match – and when they do, rest assured, your company is going to be the benefactor.

The ones who fall for the gimmicks are often just looking for a job – often just adding to the turnover rate, and thus the industry shortage. Unfortunately, many companies don’t stop and reassess their process – often ramping up the craziness, thinking they have to do more to make it work … when, many times, the opposite is true.

A better fit

Successful crane and transport companies recruit with a purpose, period. As Mark Murrell recently pointed out in a piece for FleetOwner, “… Spend time evaluating the strongest and weakest performers in your fleet to develop a clear picture of the characteristics that lead to success. Then think about the values that your company wants to convey. Put all of that together into a package that reflects your unique characteristics through booth branding, messaging and staff presentation. It will definitely attract fewer people, but it will also attract people who are a better fit.”

Murrell also pointed to the risks in relying on pay as the sole motivator. “Sure, it’s important, but hiring drivers is like selling a product or service – if you have to compete on price, it’s generally an admission that there’s no differentiator. Some of the best recruiting ads and booths at trade shows never mention pay.”

That said, have you won any awards? Make sure to articulate that to interested candidates. Serious workers want to work for serious companies – outfits that win awards for how serious they are about success. Awards suggest a strong culture and workplace environment, as well as reliable leadership.

You could also encourage your current workers to promote the company on their own social media pages – where other quality workers are likely to be looking. Referral bonuses are always a good method of motivating on-staff workers to do some indirect recruiting for you. And to that end, supply some of your more eager ones with company business cards. Workers usually know, or bump into, other workers.

What about your own company social media presence – or your website? Are they up to date, up to speed … do they reflect the company fully and productively?

Finally, are you being patient – or hiring without much research on your own end, for fear that you’ll lose this person to a competitor? Sometimes, this can be an additional misstep, and only lead you back to square one – in which case, if you do find yourself there, maybe scrap the bells and whistles this time around.

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