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Employers and employees rely on each other. Yet, there is often a deep divide between them, and a disparate understanding of needs. Though it seems simple enough, there is more to recruiting and keeping talent than finding the right person to fill a role.
In an article about updating human resources practices in Forbes, veteran recruiter Liz Ryan explains that businesses can drive good workers away with bad practices. Here are some tips on how to build what Ryan calls "a human workplace" that attracts and keeps talent.
Moldy Employment Practices
1. Black Hole Recruiting: You have an elaborate technological system in place and your job applicants spend several hours filling in little boxes that describe their skill sets and certifications. Your online recruiting system seemed state-of-the-art back in the day, but now you are just driving workers away. Ours is a distracted and busy society. An ambitious worker keen on a particular position in a particular place may spend several hours on a single application. But most won't, and not because they are lazy. They will not because your system is dated and doesn't respect their time, which is already not a good sign about your business. In Ryan's words, "Make it easy and inviting to take the first step."
2. Trust Issues: Lack of trust and will erode a working relationship, as Ryan points out. If you need to keep an eagle eye on employees, dictate their dress code down to the stitches and scrutinize their doctor's visits, you will ultimately pay. Ryan advises against treating employees like wayward children.
3. One-Way Communication: You have established a hierarchy and information goes down the chain as dictated. That is not communication. Communication is exchange. It means finding opportunities to hear from employees what is really happening in the trenches. If you limit discussion based on hierarchy. you will often hear what you want but rarely what you need for an optimally functioning business. If there is a person in the chain whose contribution is so unimportant that their opinion about the work makes no difference to you, consider whether that role even needs to exist. If someone is doing the job, however, you should be interested in their insights.
Getting With the Times
If you need help updating your employment practices, speak to a lawyer. Counsel can inform you of applicable laws, the economic viability of what you propose, and advise you on critical liability issues so that any changes you make work out well for you and your workers.
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