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Approaching Top Talent: What Not to Do

Jun 01 , 2016

Reaching out to top talent takes some know-how.

Companies want top talent. In fact, many companies need top talent to accomplish their goals and continue to grow. Recruiting top talent will only be successful if it is handled correctly, and companies often make mistakes in how they reach out to top talent.

In most cases, top talent will not come looking for a job. Attracting workers with top skills is less about job postings and more about having a corporate culture that speaks to what drives them. Figuring out what drives top talent should be priority one for companies that want to employ the best of the best.

What Drives Top Talent?

Workers with top skills do not want to be a cog in a machine. They value creativity, and they are used to having their skills validated and rewarded. Companies seeking to attract top talent should not treat these workers in a one-size-fits-all manner. Top talent is special, and it needs to be treated as such.

Top talent has lots of opportunities, and yours needs to stand out from the pack. Offering a standard salary and benefits package will probably not be successful. Besides competitive compensation, a corporate culture that provides jobs that can grow with the applicant will be attractive to top talent, which always looks to take those skills even higher.

Knowing how to approach top talent can help your company attract more highly skilled workers.

No-Hassle Recruiting

One thing top talent definitely won't appreciate is having to jump through a bunch of hoops in order to get a job that they probably don't even need. Companies must lower the hassle factor if their top talent prospects are going to make it to the end of the hiring process. ATS, extensive paperwork, and a gauntlet of senior staff interrogating top talent in a lengthy interview process will not encourage desired prospects to stick around long enough to get hired.

The hassle factor needs to stay low even after top talent comes on board. Remember, top talent typically has multiple opportunities at any given time, so if you want to retain them, you need to make it more attractive for them to be at your company rather than someone else's. If you can't make good on promises to make the job work for your top workers, you won't keep them very long.

Work-Life Balance

Top talent is often looking for work-life balance. They work hard, and they also play hard. Retention usually means accommodating the need for a reward once in a while after getting the job done.

One way to keep the hassle factor low is to be flexible about time off. Top talent gets the job done one way or the other, but they have a life, too. If you don't accommodate the occasional emergency or appointment because your "company policy" says no time off for the first 30 days, you make it harder for top talent to find your company worth the trouble.

GDH Consulting can help recruit top talent with our talent network and other methods. Contact us for more information.