It’s About The Culture

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December 11, 2006
Author: , PHR, MHROD


Exceptional market rate pay programs, fully paid benefits, relocation assistance, sign on bonuses, retention bonuses, flexible work schedules, 401k/403b/457 retirement plans, car allowance, gas cards, tuition reimbursement/assistance, loan repayment programs, outstanding CEU support, excellent orientation programs, perks…the list could go on. Are all or part of these, perhaps even other examples, part of your recruiting plan? How do you recruit your field? According to experts, there will be a shortage of over one million workers by 2010. The fact is that there is a shortage of workers and it will only worsen as we move along in the coming years. How do we sell our organization? What makes the difference when a candidate has so many choices?

I would offer that recruiting is much more than the examples and strategies mentioned above. It’s about the culture. It’s about who you are as an organization. If you are in a large city with several competitors, what is the chance that those potential employees already know about you? Pretty good. The news spreads quickly as to who is the better group to work for. Networking and the grapevine can be very powerful allies for us as recruiters, in fact, probably our best source of candidates!

Why do candidates look for jobs? Pay, benefits and many other areas are a symptom of other problems. Culture is a big selling point. Try an ad in newspapers that doesn’t focus on the job description, but instead offers a short bio on an employee in your organization and why they like working there. This is the kind of recruiting steps we need to take to be effective. Sell the culture, not the job.

What is culture in an organization? It moves beyond Mission, Vision, Values, Pillars, Strategic Plans and other statements on the walls. Culture is our traditions, customs and ways of how we work together in a company. It’s what makes us unique. It’s the backbone of who we are.

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Selling this culture will make your chances even better that the person you hire will be a good fit. They are looking for such an organization. Candidates do have many, many choices. The ball is very much in their court. Job descriptions are often the same from organization to organization. However, the culture is not. When selling a position to a candidate, focus on why you like to come to work, who your co-workers are, how you have fun together and work together, recent successes you all have had together, trials and tribulations….that = culture. Sell it, see how the candidate feels about it/if they like it and you will have a stronger opportunity to fill that req and land an excellent employee who you have been looking for all along.

Brian Beck, PHR, MHROD
Director of Human Resources
Heritage Home Healthcare & Hospice
[email protected]


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