How ‘The Great Resignation’ has affected the c-store industry was pointedly brought home in the results of this year’s 14th annual CSD/Humetrics’ HR Benchmarking Survey.
When asked: “What are the three most significant challenges your organization will face in 2022,” more than 83% of respondents singled out “staffing” as their paramount concern — far ahead of inventory management/supply chain issues (61%) and the pandemic (42%).
With unemployment at historic lows, we all know the demand for reliable, trustworthy, hardworking people far exceeds the supply. How then are you going to get quality, front-line applicants to apply, sign on and show up to work for you instead of the other employers vying for their attention?
First, you can be sure of this: “Now Hiring” has never been a compelling reason for anyone to apply for work with your organization. The only message it sends is one of desperation. If you want to hire more than a warm body, you need to give people a real reason to apply. Think along these lines: “Life is too short not to work someplace awesome;” “Our growth is your opportunity;” “Come for the job, stay for the career.”
The secret to winning the war for workers is simple; it just isn’t easy — become an employer great people want to work for — an employer-of-choice.
Start With Messaging
It all starts with creating a recruiting message around your Unique Employment Proposition (UEP). It spells out the reasons a star employee should want to work for your c-store organization instead of anywhere else. It is a value statement, a marketing statement and something you post on every manager’s office wall. It defines your culture and values, and it becomes what you live by.
It doesn’t have to be long or complicated. I recommend a list of the top five to 10 reasons a person would want to join your team. It will cover what’s in it for the jobseeker and what you can offer that competing employers don’t.
For example, it might be as simple as: “We care;” “We have fun and get the job done;” “We train you so well you can leave but treat you so well that you won’t.”
In order to develop your own UEP, consider the following:
- Why would the ideal candidate want to apply for your job opening instead of another job in a nearby location with a similar title, job description and wage?
- What do your employees like about their jobs and your organization? (Don’t know? Ask them!)
- What will you and the company do to ensure the new hire is successful on the job?
Sit down with co-workers, employees and HR folks to brainstorm additional benefits and features that are specific to each job as well as your company.
Once completed, use one, some or all of the key points in your recruiting messages. In interviews, share the list with the applicant and ask which one or two are most appealing. (If hired, their answer will tell you how that person would most effectively be managed and motivated.) Have posters made and put them everywhere. This makes the entire management staff accountable for protecting and maintaining a work environment that keeps your people happy to be — and stay — on your team.
Once you have your UEP, market your jobs with the same energy and attention you devote to your brand, your product offerings and your services. Then jobseekers will be eager to buy what you’re selling, and you will be a winner in the endless war for workers.
Certified Speaking Professional Mel Kleiman is North America’s foremost authority on how to recruit, select and retain hourly employees. He is also the president of Humetrics. Founded in 1976, Humetrics provides selection and retention tools as well as speaking, training and consulting services. He is also the author of five books including the bestseller, “Hire Tough, Manage Easy.” Visit Humetrics.com or call (713) 771-4401 for more information.