Five tips for the post-pandemic hiring frenzy

Five tips for the post-pandemic hiring frenzy

Those hiring freezes are now starting to thaw. Swiss companies are getting ready. Vaccination programmes are in full swing and soon the pandemic will be left behind. What will come afterwards, according to economists, will be an incredible economic recovery. In fact, it is likely we could see levels of economic growth that have not been experienced in decades.

18 May 2021

For Swiss companies, this is a once in a generation opportunity to seize the high ground. But to do this they need to hire talent.

There’s going to be a hiring frenzy! I’m actually already seeing this now. 2021 could be one of the most intense recruiting periods I have ever experienced in my career. With so many companies in Switzerland vying for the same (limited) talent pool, some of our most attractive candidates are receiving multiple offers from brilliant Swiss companies.

So, what can you as a hiring manager in Switzerland do? Well, here are five tips I can give you.

1. Make a firm offer

It seems obvious, but really, the firmer the offer you make the better. It shows that you mean business and it encourages the candidate to make a quick decision.

So, what do you need to do? An attractive base salary and the offer for bonus potential is certainly attractive to a candidate, but you are going to have to do more.

Think carefully about other perks, such as pensions, travel costs to work, child allowance, attractive maternity and paternity allowances, and perhaps stock options. Try to also be mindful of what candidates desire. This could be very different in a post-pandemic world so they might put more value on flexible working and the option to work from home.

The goal is to make a candidate dream about working for you and imagine how much better life will be when they join. The goal should be to make saying “yes” the most comfortable decision that they have ever made.

2. Don't leave a candidate waiting

This is one of the most frustrating experiences that candidates go through. It’s also frustrating for recruiters.

Leaving candidates parked for weeks on end, while you interview other candidates is not a great strategy. You need to be transparent throughout the recruitment process with high-value candidates. It can lead to bitterness and damage your employer brand if not managed properly.

The post-pandemic world is also about hiring fast and smart, and not pondering and overthinking about the recruitment process. If you wait too long, you might find that your top candidates have accepted an offer from one of your competitors before you could make them an offer.

3. Expect candidates to negotiate hard

Don’t be surprised if this happens. It’s not what traditionally happens in Switzerland, but times are changing. Our top candidates as mentioned, may receive multiple offers from great companies. They are in demand and they want to know what you think they are worth.

Put yourself in the candidate shoes. They might really like your company and want to work for you, but the package you offer might be less than what their second-choice company is offering them. In this instance, the reason why they are negotiating hard is because they really want to join your company with the same salary and perks that the other company is offering.

4. Don't rely too much on interviews

It's important to use different techniques, especially in a fast-paced post-Covid environment. Successive rounds of interviews use up a lot of time and resources. Google executive Laszio Bock said in his book "Work Rules!" that most interviews are a waste of time because the interviewer usually makes their assessment within the first ten seconds of meeting a candidate, and then spends the rest of the interview trying to confirm their choice.

There’s nothing wrong with interviews, but relying on just one form of recruitment assessment is not efficient. Tests and exercises can be used to quickly assess if a candidate is the right fit for the job. Candidates can look impressive on paper when they submit their CV, but a practical test can reveal just how good they really are.

5. Don't wait for the perfect candidate

In this environment, you don’t have time to look for the perfect candidate. You need to look for the best candidate that is available to you at this moment in time, which can help you achieve your objectives as quickly as possible.

Normally, it’s good to take your time when selecting a candidate. But during times like this, as mentioned before, what will give you the edge is your ability to hire fast and smart. There is no time to lose and if a candidate is good and almost fits the profile that you are after, then don’t hesitate to hire them.

This is a great opportunity to seize ground

The moment is now. A big part of a company’s success in this post-pandemic world will be determined through the recruitment strategy you use. This is especially true in Switzerland where talent is likely to get even scarcer.

Now is not the time to do the “same old thing” when recruiting.

It’s time to adapt and beat your competition by having a brilliant recruitment strategy.

Luca Semeraro

Head of Badenoch & Clark
Zurich, Switzerland

Follow Luca on LinkedIn