Did you know that 76% of staffing firms say that “differentiation” is a major challenge? In an industry where all of your services look the same, at least to potential clients, it’s more important than ever to differentiate yourself. But how do you do that?
Onboarding. Onboarding. Onboarding. Your firm’s first impression and onboarding process is key to differentiating yourself from your competitors. Great onboarding leads to an engaged workforce which is going to provide a better output of client employees and better overall employee performance.
What is an engaged employee?
Let’s talk about what an engaged employee actually is since it’s in the center of how you will differentiate your firm.
The phrase engaged employee, or candidate engagement, is thrown around all the time, and there are a ton of definitions for it. While we know theoretically what it is, what does it actually mean? After taking a deeper look into the concept of an engaged employee, these 5 characteristics stood out consistency, no matter the vertical.
- Motivation – Employees have to have a general desire or willingness to work in order to do well.
- Awareness – This one is extremely important. It’s one thing to want to be on the job, but if employees aren’t prepared or don’t know what is expected of them, including knowledge of all details that put them in a place to be successful, they are more likely to fail.
- Happiness – A happy employee contributes an average of 31% higher productivity.
- Commitment – Commitment is directly related to challenges on the job. Work isn’t always sunshine and rainbows. There will be problems and how those problems are handled will show an employees’ level of commitment. Engaged employees care and want to find a way forward, or simply a better way to do things. They will be problem solvers.
- Enthusiasm – This is related to employee happiness, but refers to excitement about something. Employees that are enthusiastic will spread positive vibes throughout the workplace directly affecting their output, and possibly other’s around them. They will also be more likely to share their experiences with peers and family members that could then lead to increased referral and retention rates.
You own the new hire experience
You are in a great position to show your prospects that you care about their new hire experience. Don’t just tell your prospects about intangible benefits. Walk in the door with something that you can actually show them. Show them how simple and intuitive your onboarding process is. And that the processes and workflows your candidates go through lead to not just temporary employees, but assets or promoters for your organization.
Here is a 5 step process on how to pitch why the new hire experience matters to your prospects:
- Have Good Onboarding
- Create a Positive Candidate Perception
- Create a Sense of Connection
- Create a Pride of Employment
- Better Output
Good Onboarding & Positive Candidate Perception
In employment, across all verticals and industries, only 12% of new employees agree that their company does a good job of onboarding new employees.
Employees are used to getting a stack of papers when being onboarded. They are used to long processes in which they are ill prepared and don’t have all of the information needed to do things in a timely manner. They simply hope to get their paperwork done in weeks, not minutes. This leads to low application and onboarding rates and more time needed by recruiters to search for new candidates.
With a streamlined, mobile, app-like workflow that has a nice look and feel, the perception by candidates is that the staffing firm they have selected cares about them. Candidates then become excited about the possibility of a new position or new chapter in their lives. They can’t wait to start work the next day.
Create a Sense of Connection & Pride of Employment
The positive perception that you have created, leads to a sense of loyalty and connection between that candidate (now employee) and the firm he/she has applied through. The employee feels a sense of pride and wants to make their employer happy so he/she will be considered for upcoming positions. Since the ultimate goal is to always hire engaged employees, no matter the role, this pride of employment is very important.
First Impressions Matter
An employees sense of pride or connection with a hiring firm will set the tone for their thoughts and actions moving forward. Now I know what you’re thinking. The staffing industry moves so quickly and creating a great first impression, let alone a great candidate experience, seems like a luxury, not a reality. The reality is that first impressions do matter and you can’t afford to have anything less.
First Impressions are formed almost instantly
You don’t have a lot of time to make an impact on employees because the majority of your employees aren’t going to be in your graces for a long period of time. You have to make as much influence as you can, as quickly as you can, within those first impressions to really make a difference.
We as humans form opinions very quickly about people and organizations. Those opinions shape how we feel about everything around us and help us to form viewpoints that are centered around first impressions.
Let’s take a look outside of the staffing industry for a minute and talk about buying a home. Imagine walking up to a house and falling in love with its lines, location, school district, views, and charm. From the minute you walk in the front door you’re going to see all of the amazing features it has instead of what it doesn’t. You’re going to find a way to make that house work for you. That first impression in this instance is known as curb appeal. A very tangible experience.
In the book Mind Hacking by John Hargrave, he expresses the theory that we can control our minds. He states that our minds are built on loops and we have the ability to rewrite these loops just as we can rewrite a software program. “Your thoughts become your actions. Your actions become your habits. Your habits become your destiny.”
It seems very philosophical, but it’s a very real theory that shows how important first impressions are.
Our claim: Employees that are engaged at work deliver better results. Facts: Engaged employees have a 60% higher output rate and have 70% fewer incidents on the job than disengaged employees.
Just to emphasize: Your thoughts become your actions. Your actions create a pattern of habits. Your habits come from your first impression. If you take time to engage a potential employee with a great onboarding process, simple application and intake workflow, you are going to see these things happen:
- Reduced Application Drop-Off
- Reduced Interview No-Shows – Candidates are going to show up for their interviews because you’re sending them text messages to remind them to be there.
- Completed Onboarding Packets – Onboarding paperwork can take less than 20 minutes to complete instead of 2 hours across 2 weeks, and a lot of back and forth on how to fill out an I-9.
- Increased Time-to-Fill
- Reduce Assignment No-Shows – The candidate portal is sending reminders to candidates about where to go, who to see, what to wear, what building to go to – all this makes a big difference.
Some Statistics You Should See
- 64% of job seekers say that a poor candidate experience would make them less likely to purchase goods and services from that employer.
- 64% of applicants will share a negative experience.
- 27% will proactively discourage others from applying.
Ouch right? That’s worse than a negative NPS.
Increased Organization Growth
Organizations that rate in the top 10% of candidate engagement have a 90% better growth trend than the competition. Simply put, if you want to grow your business, invest in your employees. Invest in their perks, their pay and benefits, and also invest in providing them the best first impression.
Simon Sinek said it best, “People don’t buy what you do. They buy why you do it.”
This whole presentation to your potential client is built around why you do what you do. Why they should hire you to deliver a better candidate experience. Some of the greatest organizations in the world lead by showing the why before the what. By thinking of temporary employment this way, you will be in the front lines of technology and will have a massive differentiator compared to what your competition is pitching to your potential clients.
Assistance from Technology
There is a direct link between technology enabled workflows and the ability to deliver better candidates for your clients. We have created technology to ensure you get qualified, prepared candidates that are motivated and ready to make an impact on your business from their first day.
Employstream was built to create the best first impression in the staffing industry. We believe that if you create a great candidate experience with a simple UI and make it easy for them to apply, fill out paperwork, upload things, sign things, etc.. And if that candidate experience includes a way to then send text and email notifications to better prepare candidates for the job, you will not only get people to work faster, you will have a leg up on your competition. We have also made believers out of our 150+ customers nationwide.