Attracting and Retaining Talent with Lasting Impressions

why culture matters attracting retaining talent beyond compensation

When companies consider how to attract and retain people, one of the first items that typically comes to mind is compensation. There is no doubt that the market right now is highly competitive regarding salaries. I won’t disagree that compensation is important and should be competitive. However, a recruiting and retention approach focused primarily on money is not a long-term solution to keeping employees excited about their role with a company.

So, what magic ingredient makes people seek your company out and do whatever it takes to thrive and remain there? It starts and ends with people.

The work experience you create should support your people today and who they will become in your organization’s future. Leveraging the strengths of your employees helps them feel successful and drives desired outcomes.

First Impressions are Important

From a recruiting standpoint, how your company represents itself publicly to potential hires is critical. Your website and social media are your first impressions. As the saying goes, perception is reality. Let’s look more closely at the website example; if you have access to more than one monitor, I want you to pull up your website and ask yourself these questions:

  • Does our website have a page dedicated solely to attracting talent?
  • Does our website accurately represent what it is like to work at our company?
  • Does our website reflect the generational diversity of our team?
  • Does our website show how we are different than our competitors?

If the answer to these questions is “no” or “we could do more,” then updating the public first impression of your organization should become a top priority for your 2023 recruiting strategy.

And remember that recruiting people isn’t one-sided. Before you recruit, determine what your immediate and long-term goals are. Hiring to fill a position differs significantly from hiring to grow a business.

  • Is your company in growth mode or a more mature phase?
  • Do you hire talent based on the answer to the question above?
  • Does your organization align its learning and development based on that answer?

Knowing why you hire and how it impacts your overall business goals can have long-lasting benefits.

The Work Environment

We’ve talked about external representation, but what’s happening inside your business is just as important. Whatever you promote externally needs to ring true once a new hire joins. In today’s market, if employees feel they were sold something inaccurate during the recruiting phase, they will quickly move on.

Every business has a unique culture, but certain elements support a higher employee retention rate, including collaboration and communication. Again, compensation and perks are meaningful, but they can’t replace or define a good work experience. Your company culture should set your people up for success.

  • Does your company embrace a collaborative work environment where ideas are fostered?
  • Are the behaviors of employees and/or your team helping to drive results?
  • Do your employees receive updates on the company?

Companies that regularly communicate about the business’s current state and what it means to each person’s role create a work environment of trust and belonging. When we do a better job educating employees and prospective employees about the future of the business, they feel more prepared and equipped. If employees are not sure about the direction of the company, then they naturally may be worried about their own professional and personal future. This is the very reason an individual may be open to seeking other opportunities. But, this approach doesn’t just apply at the company level; it must also be reflected consistently at the department or division level.

Next Steps

All the questions (although not an exhaustive list) posed in this blog and their answers are interconnected and impact your organization’s ability to attract and keep people. Join us for our webinar on March 29 as we look more closely at one area of people-centric recruiting and retention strategies: career pathing. This webinar will help you optimize employee learning and growth to create a more meaningful work environment.

Kristi Weierbach