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Inside Dental Technology
April 2019
Volume 10, Issue 4

Recruitment Strategies in a Tight Labor Market

Acquire—and retain—the best talent

Brian Forman

It is always challenging in any labor market to acquire the best talent available. In the current environment, the strategies that are required to source new talent involve using traditional sourcing methods along with devising new ways to draw in existing talent.

Now more than ever, employees are looking for new career opportunities, as the unemployment rate is under 4% nationally. Under the traditional methods of recruitment, dental laboratories will use job placement boards, recruitment firms, and referrals. These methods are typically successful enough to attract the right talent, but with the current unemployment rate at a record low, other methods should be considered in conjunction with these. In order to attract the best talent, you need to ensure that you are offering the most competitive compensation along with benefits and other perks like paid time off (PTO).

In today's tight labor market, it is essential to market your business to potential candidates as if you were selling your services to future clients. This begins with creating a company culture that will attract prospects. Employees evaluate a job opportunity not just on financial considerations but also on culture. Easy communication, a collaborative spirit, and the sense that good work is acknowledged and appreciated go a long way. Professionals are seeking dental laboratories that offer a great work environment along with opportunities to flourish.

Aside from referrals, another effective method of recruitment is utilizing specialized job fairs or trade shows that focus solely on the dental field. Having recruitment materials/flyers for distribution onsite helps to obtain a real world connection that is outside of the social media realm. Meeting candidates face to face and having the ability to attract the best talent is a broader way than the typical online job posting and subsequent email or phone call for the first round of the recruitment process. It's important to be fully prepared to answer any questions that candidates have as well. While you are always evaluating your hiring needs against the candidates you are meeting, they are also comparing the potential dental laboratories to decide where they would like to work.

The benefits package is another recruitment tool that candidates evaluate. As healthcare costs continue to rise, many employers realize that sharing costs between themselves and the employees is a foregone conclusion. Depending on the headcount and geographical location of your laboratory, you may be able to find an affordable healthcare plan that you can offer employees to minimize the costs. The employee annual healthcare contribution is a key factor in the total compensation package that potential employees consider. If you want to attract top talent, you need to ensure that you are offering a competitive healthcare plan and that the contributions are reasonably priced. Another factor in benefits packages is paid time off . Most companies offer PTO that accounts for about 10% of an employee's annual salary. Having a policy that accrues at least 15 days per year of paid time off, in addition to eight to 10 company paid holidays, is the standard in today's market. As tenure increases, so will also the number of PTO days.

The use of the internet for recruitment is the most conventional method in today's market. Many companies are now hiring digital/social media experts to expand the brand and assist in recruitment. Having a strong online presence with a theme to showcase your company and creating a career section that outlines the reasons why candidates should work for your laboratory will help to differentiate you from the competition. A well-designed company website allows the business to share how it defines itself through its compelling story, which can increase the chances of attracting the best talent available. Keep in mind that the tighter the labor market, the more limited the pool of qualified and top-tier candidates. So it's important to be creative and think outside the box in conjunction with using conventional recruitment methods.

About the Author

Brian Forman is a Human Resources Generalist with Atelier 4 in Long Island City, New York.

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