Overcoming the Struggle to Hire and Retain Younger Talent

A small business seeking workers.

It’s no secret that hiring is hard for many organizations right now. Continued company success relies on bringing on new, top talent to fill open roles. But pressure is mounting as businesses continue to struggle for ways to attract and retain younger recruits.

Unfortunately, there is no silver bullet or magic word that makes a business immediately interesting for younger job hunters. But there are several areas a company can focus on to improve their odds, pique workers’ interests, and draw in the right recruits. Highlighting these areas in job descriptions and during recruiting can help companies stand out amongst their industry peers. And now is the time for companies to employ every advantage they can to keep the new blood flowing into their workforce.

Focus on Culture and Reputation

The day-to-day duties for positions with similar titles are virtually the same between two companies in similar industries. But the environment of the workplace around those jobs can be radically different. And this difference is extremely important to potential new hires. Because it’s the difference between working another job and working for an employer that actually cares if the employee makes it home.

Employers need to mind both their internal company culture and external company reputation because they both carry real weight. A company with a strong reputation for compliance and low injury rates is able to back up their claims about providing good on the job safety training and equipment in job listings. But a company with multiple OSHA violations or a major accident that’s been reported in the press is less able to back up the same claim.

The same is true for a company with a strong culture. Companies that actively show their commitment to their employees with proactive safety initiatives, continual safety improvements, updated and functioning safety equipment, and access to safety workshops and leadership education for growth don’t need to constantly bombard their employees with messages that they’re important. The employees know how important they are within the company. And this strong culture of safety creates opportunities through a positive feedback loop as employees go out of their way to refer others to apply for open positions and champion the company to prospective hires.

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

There’s an old adage in storytelling: show, don’t tell. Companies that definitively take action rather than talking about how they’re interested in taking action are companies that create loyalty amongst employees. Companies build a positive reputation and culture by actively investing in their current employees.

Invest both time and resources into current employees to build their confidence and skills and lay the groundwork to entice new, younger hires to join up with the organization. A company gains credibility when they can point to concrete examples of employees that have advanced in the company, pivoted to new roles, or worked their way into management. The same is true when organizations can show how teams have expanded, how processes have been optimized and become safer, and how new equipment and technologies have been adopted to make work easier while reducing risks.

Provide safety education and leadership workshop opportunities to show employers are invested in the current safety and future goals of employees. Bring in industry experts to help identify safety gaps to show an employer’s commitment to continual improvement. And establish a true culture of safety to indicate an employer’s willingness to listen and engage with their employees in meaningful ways to effect change. These steps capture the attention of prospective applicants and make them excited to apply and work with employers.

Amerisafe provides the information and services to help companies develop safety leaders and improve overall safety performance. For more information on how Amerisafe can assist with your businesses’ safety needs, contact an expert today.