How Employers Can Make Their Company More Attractive to Entry-Level Job Seekers and Keep the Local Talent Pool Stocked

How Employers Can Make Their Company More Attractive to Entry-Level Job Seekers and Keep the Local Talent Pool Stocked

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Many recent high-school and college graduates come out of their education with a “grass is greener” philosophy when it comes to finding an entry-level job. Businesses – especially in smaller to mid-size towns, often have to contend with a depleted talent pool as young adults leave their hometowns looking for bigger and brighter opportunities. As an employer, you must make sure your company is providing those bigger and brighter opportunities so that young professionals do not feel the need to seek out their first real jobs in other places. Here are some ways to help keep your talent local.

Get new hires to commit to your business, not just a job

When a recent high-school or college graduate is seeking out an entry-level job, they are likely thinking about whether or not they can advance and if they actually want to advance in the company. Instead of selling new hires on one particular job, sell them on your company as a whole. Sell them on your mission, values, and benefits. As BizJournals says, you can match candidates to the right entry-level positions during the interview process. The main goal is to first get them interested in working for your company in any capacity.

Turn interns into full-time team members

Your company should offer internships to young adults in your community. Not only will you benefit from having young, eager, and let’s be honest, cheaper, labor around the office, but your community will benefit by having a place where young people can learn the ins and outs of a business as they continue their education. Hiring interns isn’t enough, however. You must turn those interns into full-time team members. You should think of your pool of interns as your best source of talent. Who better to hire for a full-time, paid position at your company than someone who already knows a lot about your company? You will save on hiring and recruitment costs, and young people in your area will know that internships can lead to real jobs.

Focus on mentoring and training

You are more attractive to young people looking for an entry-level position is they truly feel they have a chance to learn and advance inside the company. Even if your business is small, you should devote time and resources to a solid mentoring program – one that lets potential hires know that you’re serious about not only paying them to work, but helping them grow. It also tells your current employees who may be thinking about setting sail for another opportunity that you care about keeping them around, making them better, and advancing them in your company.

Think outside the box re: retainment

Getting talent to stay in the community and come to your company is only part of the battle. You have to keep them there too. You can offer to help pay for education or student loan debt. You can offer competitive pay and innovative benefits. You can ditch the traditional top-down hierarchy and allow even entry-level employees to contribute ideas. You can be flexible with working from home, telecommuting, etc. As points out, motivation is a key factor in productivity. Foster a work environment where you boost productivity through positive reinforcement instead of fear of discipline, and people will want to stay.

A new generation of young workers are looking for the best place to spend their time. These early years are vital for them, and they have to invest themselves not only in an entry-level job, but in a company as a whole. You must give them opportunities to grow and think outside the box on how to retain them. Your goal is to show them that the grass is, in fact, green enough where they stand.


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Author: Mashpee Chamber of Commerce

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