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PROPERTY & CASUALTY
AUG 31, 2020
Recruiting and Retaining Talent for Skilled Trades
One of the biggest challenges to recruiting the best talent for skilled labor opportunities is helping candidates see their earning potential and opportunity for advancement. Construction companies offering structured advancement potential find their employees stay 2-5+ years, as opposed to 1-2 years without. But how do you attract and keep the best talent in the first place?
Step 1 - Recruit
Through Apprenticeship and Internship Programs
Offer part-time summer or year-round jobs to local high school, trade school and vocational school students. This is a win-win for both sides. These programs let you address misconceptions about skilled labor earning and advancement potential, while also giving the apprentices or interns hands-on experience at your company. Both parties get a chance to check each other out and if both like what they see, you may gain a full-time employee following graduation.
Through Employee Referrals
LinkedIn® reports that your best employees are most likely to be referrals from current employees. Referred candidates are typically a small percentage of the total candidate pool but end up being 40 percent of total hires and are 3.5 times less likely to be fired. Because referrals are such a productive source for new employees, you may also want to consider a bonus program to encourage employee referrals. The LinkedIn research can be found
Take advantage of job fairs, industry trade groups and business organization meetings to meet prospective employees. Networking is a great way to develop a solid pipeline of strong candidates, so you are always ready even when you need to hire quickly.
Step 2 - Retain Good Employees
Employee retention is enhanced by:
Providing skills training
While many construction companies don’t have their own internal training programs available, they can partner with organizations that specialize in training construction skills and management. An online query will provide you with a number of viable options.
Promoting from within
Employees want to know that if they work hard and go above and beyond, there are structured promotional opportunities within the company. Be transparent about the qualifications and requirements needed for these roles so employees can be specific when they develop their training and development plans.
Being family friendly
It also makes economic sense to be family friendly, since the cost of replacing an employee is about 21 percent of that person’s salary. That equates to about 10 weeks of salary and is equivalent to the average cost for paid family leave.
Having effective managers
Finally, make sure your managers are doing a good job, because most employees leave companies because of poor managers. That means if you’re doing everything else right but allow a toxic manager to stay, you’re going to lose highly valuable skilled workers who are increasingly more difficult to replace.