The total number of of workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic is easily in the tens of millions nationwide. A pretty significant percentage of those are able to work and want to work. Our region was affected in many ways early on in the pandemic, and we are still affected as it relates to jobs and getting people back to work. Businesses want to operate as close to normal as possible, the majority of workers realize the best opportunity to make more money is at the height of our tourism season at the Jersey Shore. And the visitors who continue to journey to our towns and those who call New Jersey their home away from home want to enjoy the shore as much as possible and experience the service they are accustomed to receiving.
The service connection between business (B) and customers (C), commonly referred to as B to C, is E. E stands for employees. It is fair to say the more experienced, dedicated and knowledgeable the employee, the higher the probability the customer’s interaction with the business will be positive.
There has been much debate (that continues as this column is being written) about the enhanced unemployment amounts potentially affecting employees' decisions to return to work when employment is offered. It is extremely difficult to approach this issue from a “one size fits all” position or even a program where “one size fits one state or one region within a state.” Certain businesses are still not open, certain businesses, based on mandated safety procedures and protocols, are forced to operate at reduced levels, while others are operating at full capacity.
Despite the overwhelming effects that can be viewed as both negative or in some cases positive with regards to COVID-19’s impact on a business, if a businesses need employees to do business, then they want to employ the most talented, knowledgeable and dedicated individuals they can find. There are many people who want to get back to work and can return to work safely.
That does not mean that the thousands and thousands of people who lost their jobs over the past several months are all able to be employed. Many of those individuals are using every resource available to them, entering each opportunity with an open mind, and those willing to broaden their search for work, both geographically and by the type of work they seek, are on their way to finding positive results.
There are hundreds if not thousands of quality, hardworking, dependable and skilled experienced employees in the current group of recently unemployed. The majority of these people want to work and have demonstrated a solid work ethic.
On the opposite side of the potential employee seeking a job is the employer who may in fact have a job or a number of jobs to offer. When the ideal employee meets the perfect employer there is nothing better in the world of employment. However in a sea of thousands of applicants how many conversations, interviews, phone calls and other exchanges, what does it take for the employer to land the employee they are seeking? How much time and money is spent attracting and searching through what could potentially be hundreds if not thousands of resumes and cover letters? In some cases there may even be a real hesitancy on the part of some businesses to even post a job opening for fear they cannot handle the multitude of responses.
Here are few quick tips to help employers find, attract and hire employees during this challenging time:
• Know exactly what it is you are looking for. Deciding you need help is a start. But don’t hang that help wanted sign until you define exactly what the job responsibilities will be, including hours and experience needed.
• Ask your friends and associates for some help. Everybody knows somebody who is currently out of work and seeking employment. Someone who knows you and your business may be the best resource to help you find an employee who is a good fit in your organization.
• Seek some advice from the experts. The power of the internet can be harnessed in a few ways to make finding the right employee easier. Study up on the employment sites for outreach suggestions and presenting options that have demonstrated success in the field of employment.
• Take it to your social media. Complement your networking and word of mouth with a social media employee search campaign. Let your fans, friends and followers know you are looking for a quality employee. Remember that if they are a true fan, friend or follower, they want to have a certain level of quality and customer service at your business. It would stand to reason they would want to offer people who would be able to meet that expectation.
• Keep control of your employment and hiring process. It can be extremely difficult and time consuming to undertake a hiring initiative even when filling one job in today’s climate. Having a process that allows for quick decisions based on a solid foundation of preset practices will ultimately serve you, the process and in the end your business best. Have some rules, guidelines and procedures in place, even if you are the only one doing the hiring.
• Clearly lay out the expectations. Setting the expectations of the role and the work to be performed along with requests for information prior to interviews or meetings with potential candidates is important. Many will, on their own, based on their responses make your decision easier.
• Remember to follow safety mandates and your industry protocols to keep yourself, your customers and your much valued employees safe and healthy.
Here’s to finding and landing the perfect people for your available positions in a sea of talented labor.