Hiring Essential Workers from a Large Talent Pool

All firms have had to reshape working practices; reducing team sizes, working in ‘bubbles’ or shifting resource to more ‘in demand’ roles. While some businesses have furloughed staff, restructured or downsized, essential retailers have faced a different challenge. They had to hire new staff – and hire them quickly.

We saw a surge in interest from those needing to hire or redeploy essential retail workers, delivery drivers and e-commerce firms. It accelerated the development of our new assessment to help out and prompted the hosting of a webinar in which we brought together Aon’s Assessment Solutions experts in this market. The topics discussed are as relevant now as they were a few months ago.

(Watch Webinar Here)

Essential retailers became, well, essential during the pandemic. As other retailers may have paused or slowed down, essential retail continues to ramp up. In the changing hiring world, talent managers are looking to embrace new tactics to find and hire great people.  They are looking at assessing more people virtually to save resource costs and face-to-face exposure – and to do this quickly and fairly. They are seeking out the essential skills needed in their new hires and also check that they have the flexibility to bend and shift as the business takes them.

Here are five concerns that we are helping clients with right now as they find themselves hiring in a disrupted talent market.

Hiring for the skills you need – at speed

Time is of the essence. When demand for new hires is great, it is tempting to take on candidates with little regard. After all, they may simply be short term contracts so speed trumps everything. But hiring at speed does not remove the need for workers to be competent, to learn and follow procedures and who are collaborative and customer-focused. Regardless of the need for new hires, you still need people to show up and get the job done. We explored the essential skills of essential workers in our article here.

Spotting the best candidates

With a talent pool full of potential candidates, it can be hard to manage the volume and see through the list to find the best-fits (is that a word?) for you. You want to do this quickly but also fairly, making objective decisions about why you are progressing some and not other candidates. For years, we have been working with companies to put in place automated recruitment processes that enable hiring managers to assess for the key skills and use those scores to make fair decisions. It helps screen out those not suited and lets you focus on the best. Learn more about our essential assessment here.

Hiring for flexibility

It’s tempting to hire someone just because you need them yesterday. But it’s clear that the working landscape is changing. What it needed – at every level in a company – is flexibility. Take this opportunity to hire someone capable of moving into new roles, acquiring new ways of working so that they can stay with you as the business moves.

Moving hiring into the virtual space

Hiring has changed in recent months. It is more agile and more efficient. There are new practical ways to check out applicants virtually. Our assessments are online which means that applicants can complete any assessments in their own time and away from your workplace. You then simply review the scores and take forward those you wish to. But what about coming into the store for a face-to-face interview or job simulation? That too can be done online and we can offer some good tips on how to make this work. Check out our article here.

Treating your Customers as candidates

If you are hiring at speed or in a ‘buyers’ hiring market with many applicants for jobs, it could be easy to forget that the same people who are your candidates are likely also to be your customers. It’s important that you offer a positive, brand supporting experience even when hiring at speed and in volume.  Gamified assessments help to make the process more fun and more engaging but many times, we find other factors are even more important such as a transparent process, face validity – being clear why the selection methods are relevant, giving feedback on results and being able to complete the hiring process on a mobile device. Read more about why this is important here.

The talent market is changing. Those that still need to hire – and quickly – to meet the demands of the business are working out new ways of meeting the challenges.

Talk to us to see how we can help you.

About the Author

Aon creates smart measurement solutions with valid and innovative online assessment products. Aon is globally the preferred partner for organisations who demand the best.

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