Man talking on the phone about recruitment

Is this the end of job advertising? If so, what is the future of recruitment?

August 22, 2023 | By Sara Scarboro, Vitil People Solutions

It wasn't all that long ago that a well-worded advertisement, clearly showing company values, job requirements and benefits was all that was needed to attract a suitable candidate pool for the majority of positions in Perth.

There were of course exceptions to this rule with very senior or highly technical roles requiring a targeted 'head hunt', but overall advertising for new employees simply worked. And if it didn't, switching up your language or diversifying platforms did the trick.

While Australia as a whole has seen a labour shortage over the last few years, Perth's employment market has undeniably experienced the greatest impact. When we were walled off from the world during the Covid pandemic, our State's economy continued to grow, exponentially increasing the demand across all skilled workers.

With restrictions on people movement now a nearly forgotten thing of the past, the expectation was that our skills shortage would ease. It hasn't.

Anyone who has posted an advertisement to hire an administrator, sales executive or heaven forbid a qualified tradesperson over the last 12 months now understands the rules of engagement have changed. A mid-level role that would have once attracted over 150 applications is now commonly seeing around 20. Regardless of salary, benefits and organisational branding, this has become the new normal.

While still offering benefits such as employer branding and a platform to gain market information, advertising is no longer fit for purpose as a singular method of candidate pooling.

With increased market salary expectations alongside pressure to reduce skills and qualification requirements, how do we pivot, adapting to the changing context of work whilst maintaining quality talent outcomes?

The alternative is a proactive approach: passive recruitment

Passive recruitment is nothing new, although it is becoming more relevant for mid-level roles than ever before. It involves market mapping potential new employees and directly contacting them to sell your role and organisation. Passive recruitment it is an effective tool for targeting high quality employees with specific skill sets and demonstrated employment experience.

Passive recruitment relies on the same principles as traditional recruitment however the results are amplified, what you put in you get out. A half-hearted job advertisement is a wide net that may sometimes hit the mark however effective planning and exceptional candidate engagement are essential for a successful passive recruitment process.

Planning involves becoming crystal clear on the goals of the role as well as your employer value proposition. Thoroughly understanding the employment market in which you operate and seeing where amongst your competitors your organisation sits, is paramount. Evaluation is required in all areas such as salary / benefits, flexibility, training and development, career pathways, culture, and role/organisational structure. Often aspects of work that have kept your highest performing, long-standing employees engaged provides clues for the selling points of your organisation.

Being realistic and honest is key. A small to mid-sized firm in Perth, is unlikely to be able to differentiate themselves based on salary package or an extensive benefits program. However, a flatter organisational structure is often desirable to employees feeling stuck by their lack of impact and the bureaucracy required for decision making at a larger organisation.

Speaking with someone you have typically never met before, engaging and adding value within the first few minutes of a conversation, is a skill that takes practice. Showing humanness, being authentic and having a great sense of humour are often the keys to making this work. It is important to keep in mind that regardless of the immediate result, there are long term benefits to keeping in touch, and showing respect and professionalism is essential for a positive lasting impression and employer brand.

Increasing the quantity and quality of talent in a labour short market will not be achieved by repeating a recruitment strategy that previously worked in a vastly different employment market, nor even an improved version of it.

Is it the end of advertising? Probably not. However if your talent acquisition strategy isn't including passive recruitment, you are missing some of the best quality talent in the market.

While changing talent attraction strategy is not always easy, there has never been a better time to start than now.

If you have any questions, contact our Talent Specialists at Vitil, your Inhouse, Outsourced Human Resource Consultants for a boutique recruitment experience that will meet your individual needs.

Vitil HR Consultants

Vitil People Solutions is a boutique HR consulting firm based across Perth and Australia, who offer flexible, reliable and affordable outsourced human resource support, people solutions and recruitment services, where your team is the key focus. Our experienced professionals can objectively assess your environment and help with change implementation.

Contact us to discuss tailoring HR solutions to your business needs.

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