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A 2018 ManPower Group survey, revealed 45 percent of employers say they can’t find the skills they need to fill open roles. That’s the highest talent shortage in over a decade — and certainly not the way recruiters want to start 2019.

To tackle this issue and start the new year on a more positive note, the hiring process must revolve around job seekers. Candidate-focused recruitment tactics are now a necessity, not a nicety.

Understanding what job seekers want is the only way recruiters will effectively flip the recruitment process on its head. This tactic, however, isn’t as easy as it sounds. Recruiters are by no means mind readers and job seekers aren’t always direct with their needs.

To get you started, I’ve compiled a list of what job seekers say they want and popular tricks recruiters are using to hire top talent in today’s job market. So, get out your pen and paper and add these four recruitment resolutions to your list for 2019:

1. Consider a candidates’ potential over their skills

Job seekers want to know you believe in their potential to succeed at your company. This type of confidence goes far deeper than their skill set — and they’re waiting for recruiters to recognize this.

Luckily, many are taking the hint. An impressive 66 percent of employers said in a recent CareerBuilder survey that they will train and hire workers who may not have all the skills they need but have potential.  

Focusing on potential isn’t just bringing more candidates into your talent pool. Candidates are given the opportunity to prove they’re worthy of a role with this approach. As a result, they’ll gain more respect for the company, as a whole, and will be more willing to spread the news of your amazing team.

As a bonus, this new open-minded hiring mindset will land you top medical sales reps that wouldn’t have previously made it past the qualification checklist.

2. Offer higher wages from the start

Medical sales reps know that hard work will earn them more money — no matter where they work. They’re comfortable with commission structures and understand the amount of responsibility they hold over their own paychecks.

However, they’re looking for companies that are competitive from the start. Higher salaries prove to candidates that companies value their employees and are willing to pay top candidates what they’re worth (within reason, of course).

Employers have heard this cry and are prepared to act on it. In fact, 30 percent of employers plan to increase starting salaries for new employees by 5 percent or more, according to the previously mentioned CareerBuilder survey.

Show company leaders the value of offering higher starting wages. Present the cost of prolonged candidate searches and the estimated cost of lost sales. Then, compare these costs to the suggested wage increase to finalize your point that this is one resolution you need checked-off your list.

3. Focus on their favorite company benefits

This seems like a given. And as a recruiter, you’re likely already focusing on top-notch benefits in the job description and on the career site.

So why would medical sales reps put this on your New Year’s resolution list?

The truth is, their favorite benefits are overlooked. Compensation is often at the top of the benefits list in a money-driven industry like medical sales. However, that’s not even near the top of what’s most important to today’s reps.

Actually, medical sales reps in our most recent Best Places to Work report admitted they prioritize companies that encourage work-life balance (82 percent) and focus on team building and collaboration (54 percent).

Let job seekers know you understand how important work-life balance and teamwork is to your company. Present new procedures the company has put in place to enhance both for current and future employees. For example, show new flexibility measures offered for working parents, structured employees hours (when possible), and daily stand-up meetings that allow team members to work together to address internal and external issues.

What are your recruitment New Year’s resolutions? We want to hear about them!

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