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Select the real talent in the tight labor market

Friday 25 February 2022

The job market has become strained. As a recruiting professional, you don't need newspaper articles to tell you that. You notice each time you try to find the perfect candidate for a position vacancy. For some time now, the number of responses from suitable candidates has been on the decline. The official figures tell the same story. In August 2021, there were 106 vacancies for every 100 job seekers. Three months later, this had risen to 126 vacancies for every 100 job seekers.

Anything to bring people in

Because of this tight labor market, HR professionals are pulling out all the stops to acquire talent. This trend that used to only be visible in certain subsectors, such as engineering and healthcare, now seems to be everywhere. In an article published by the newspaper Het Parool on February 19, 2022, a few concrete examples are mentioned. A confectioner promises a €3,000 signing bonus to the first young applicant to sign. An electronics chain promises new employees who stay on for a month a bonus of € 250. Even at flash couriers, new staff are rewarded for staying on. One offers € 200 sign-on bonus, the other even offers a perk of € 1000 to employees who stay on for six months.

Some logistics companies hijack staff from competitors and are prepared to pay € 5000 for this, while others hand out free cars to prevent employees from switching. And if that doesn’t highlight this phenomenon enough, at one pizzeria, new pizza delivery drivers get a chance to win a free trip into space!

Are gifts truly bringing in the right people?

The question is whether you are bringing in the right people with this kind of gift. Every HR professional knows the difference between intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. The ideal employee is intrinsically motivated; the content of the work fits perfectly suits their professional motivations

Gifts and sign-on bonuses typically appeal to those with extrinsic motivation. Yes, you may be bringing people in, but what’s to stop them from responding to the next vacancy with a bonus attached?

After all, that pizza delivery employee who just received €1000 from you because he has been employed for six months, will just as easily switch to the pizzeria with the €200 sign-on bonus? And that trucker who received €5000 to switch can go back to work elsewhere after a year.

Extrinsic motivators increasingly austere

If you also consider that, over the past few years, employers in the Netherlands have repeatedly cut back on employment conditions, the question of whether the people you attract will stay on board becomes even bigger. Wages have lagged behind inflation, fringe benefits have mostly been cut, and the workload is only increasing. How can you attract people with an extrinsic reward, if the candidate—once inside—discovers that the extrinsic reward offered is somewhat on the meager side?

Look further than the short term

Clearly, we have doubts that handing out one-time gifts is a smart strategy in this tight labor market. Of course, employers need to entice potential employees, but not at any cost.

Employee turnover is far from free. Therefore, it is important to be selective even when the labour market is precarious. The winning strategy is not to settle for the first option, but to take your time in choosing the candidate who is likely to stay with you for a longer period of time. Ideally, you would like to subject candidates to an extensive test procedure. However, there is a good chance that they will then drop out and join the competition. Fortunately, there are online tools available that provide a scientifically validated report in a short period of time with which you can make a well-founded decision.

Online ability test at a college level

The Amsterdam-based company TestGroup offers an online ability test at a college level. This allows you to see if a candidate has the necessary abilities for vacancies at a college level. The test works with artificial intelligence and is used for recruiting staff, but also to see if someone can handle a certain course or whether they are suitable for a development trajectory.

Easy ability testing for P&O and the candidate

The online ability tests are reasonably priced. Moreover, applying for the test takes less than 30 minutes. The candidate receives an invitation link by email, and then they can then take the test whenever and wherever it is most convenient for them. Afterwards, you will quickly receive an extensive report about the candidate. This report is as insightful as possible, so you can easily see if the candidate meets your expectations. And, should you have any questions interpreting the results, TestGroup’s consultants are ready to help.

Special online tests for ICT companies

TestGroup has developed a special ability test for ICT companies, which combines The Bridge Career career test and The Bridge Ability Suite ability test. This test is specifically designed for retraining programs for ICT positions. ICT companies trying to solve their staff shortage by retraining people from outside the ICT sector can benefit from this online assessment for retraining in ICT.

Testing candidates easier than ever

Thanks to these—and other—online ability tests, it is easier than ever to test applicants and candidates for job suitability.

This is what our satisfied customers say about us

“Work2work: 'The Bridge Career makes it easy to find a suitable role'.”

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Work2Work