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Employee Perks You Need to Offer If You Want to Recruit Top Talent

It’s no secret that today’s employees want more than money—so if your company is still offering the same benefits package that was on the books back in 1999, you’re not doing enough to attract the talented workers you really want.

That said, it also isn’t enough to offer the latest workplace incentives just because you think they’re cool. Sure, free snacks and giant slides in the office are great. But are those the perks that will motivate your team the most—or are you trying to copycat great incentives programs like the ones at Google?

Employee perks have to be tailored to the type of workers you want to attract to your company. That means you need to know which options are available and why they work. The team at Company Folders has compiled this top ten list to help you get started:

10 Employee Perks To Attract Top Talent
11 Employee Perks To Attract Top Creative Talent

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Using Analytics to Create the Best Careers Page

Using Analytics to Create the Best Careers PageThe Careers Page on your website is one of the most important online recruiting tools you have. It’s the place where you can be certain all candidates are going to get your sales pitch about working for your organization. You use it as the hub for bragging about your benefits, culture and opportunities. It also usually includes links to job openings so people can apply.

Such an important asset must be monitored, maintained and continuously improved to ensure you’re always delivering the right message to job seekers. The question is: How do you know if it’s working?

Measuring your Careers Page will apply the same strategy used by your web team to monitor the success of your entire website. Google Analytics or a similar tool should already be set up, in which case, it’s a matter of requesting the right information.

Set Your Goals

The first step to improving anything is understanding specifically what you want to improve. Simply saying “We want the best Careers Page” makes it very difficult to measure success. Work with your recruiting team to understand exactly what you want to get out of the page. Does it just need to tell people how awesome it is to work at your company? Do you want job seekers to find your page and apply to job openings or reach out to HR? Is it a place where candidates at the interview stage can seek additional information about the organization?

You should also set a strategy about how you want people to learn about your page. For example, are you making a push to promote your company through social media or do you want to understand how successful your in-house recruiters’ emails are? Your strategy may also focus on referrals from other job boards or search engines like Google.

Decide What You’ll Measure

Your goals will dictate what you want to measure. Very often, people will track the traffic on the site, and feel happy when that grows. But how useful is that? What if all of those visitors were living on another continent where you don’t do business? Perhaps you have keywords and content that’s causing an influx of high school students to end up on your page while researching an assignment.

Conversely, you can’t measure everything either. If we consider Google Analytics as an example, there are hundreds of metrics and reports to choose from. Asking your web team for everything will be a waste of everybody’s time. A few areas you may want to consider monitoring are:

  • Which sources are people coming from? Do they fit with any recruiting investments you’ve made?
  • How well are people engaging with your page? Do they stay on it for a long time or are they leaving right away?
  • Where do they move to after your Careers Page? To another page on your company’s website or do they leave it completely? Do they apply for jobs?
  • How many of your visitors are returning visitors versus new people?
  • What region are they from? Are your recruiting efforts being wasted by attracting people from the other side of the world?
  • How many people apply to jobs versus look at them? Are any people dropping off part way through the application process?

Once you understand your goals and are tracking them against specific metrics, you will quickly see more success in your Careers Page. If you’re still not seeing success in your recruiting goals, then your next step may be to re-evaluate your online goals, ensuring they all connect.

What goals do you have for your Careers Page? Share your experiences with our readers in the comments below!

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10 Ways to Promote Mental Health in Your Workplace

As we approach Mental Health Week in Canada, it’s a good time for managers to take a step back and ensure you’re providing a healthy workplace on all fronts. As this video from Heads Up Australia points out, more employees than we realize suffer from some sort of mental health illness. Not only does it have a negative impact on their well-being, but it can also hurt their productivity. Therefore, promoting mental health in the workplace benefits everyone.

The video is packed with helpful information for leaders looking to play a bigger role in mental health and encourage a healthy environment. It provides 10 easy-to-implement tips that will play a huge role in improving your workplace culture. Is there anything you would add?

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Family-Friendly Perks to Recruit the Best People

Family-Friendly Perks to Recruit the Best PeopleCompanies who want to attract the best talent without blowing their salary budget can compete for top candidates when they offer unique, desirable perks. Very often, job seekers and employees will value these benefits more than a few extra thousand dollars. If you’re looking at expanding on the great things you offer your employees, have you considered specific family-friendly perks? Not only will they grab the attention of the skilled individuals you want to hire, but on a larger-scale, they help position your employer brand as a being family-friendly.

What can you be doing to offer an environment desirable to parents? Here are a few examples, based on what some of Canada’s top family-friendly employers already offer today:

  • Alternative Work Solutions: Most progressive offices already have some benefits that tie into this area. They include generous vacation, flexible hours, compressed work weeks and work-from-home programs so employees can work where and when its most convenient. This is especially helpful to parents trying to juggle the schedules of their children.
  • Parental Leave Top-Ups: On top of the government mandated leaves that companies are required to give new parents, family-friendly organizations will also top-up the pay of mothers, fathers, and adoptive parents when they are on leave. Some companies have also been known to offer extended leaves up to three years.
  • Daycare Assistance: Many parents choose to put their career on hold because when they do the math, it’s more expensive for them to go to work each day and pay for day care, than it is not to work at all. To keep these skilled employees around, companies will offer babysitting subsidies or provide daycare facilities right at the workplace.
  • Scholarships: Once daycare expenses are eliminated, parents only have a few years before they have to start worrying about another major expense of raising a child — education. Few companies pay the entire tuition, but some do offer scholarships to deserving children of their employees.
  • Encouraging Family Time: Family-friendly cultures know that spending time with family is important. As such, they extend regular staff socials to invite kids and spouses or offer subsidies for extra-curricular activities.
  • Family Planning: Offered as a rather unique perk, some companies go beyond helping employees who are already parents, and help other employees to become parents. They offer subsidies for in-vitro fertilization or adoption.

The perks you can offer job seekers to sway them away from your competition are endless and extend as far as your imagination. A mix of unique benefits with industry standards is a solid strategy that will differentiate your organization while giving people what they’ve come to expect from the best employers. When you can add “family-friendly” to your brand, it won’t attract all job seekers (young people who have yet to start a family, people who opt not to have children and empty nesters) but you are guaranteed to tap into a market of talent that is neglected by many other top employers.

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Optimize Your Job Postings for Maximum Exposure

The first step to reeling in top job applicants is to have the best possible job posting. Beyond  a detailed description that tells a job seeker what you need, a perfect job posting uses persuasive communication to grab their attention as well as optimizes tools to drive people to the posting so it gains more exposure.

All of a sudden, creating a great job posting seems more difficult than a standard cut and paste job… it requires thinking! Before you get too overwhelmed, have a look at this AkkenCloud infographic that was created in partnership with Ghergich&Co. It highlights the most important strategies for gaining maximum exposure for your job postings.

Click To Enlarge

How to Optimize Your Job Posts for Maximum Exposure

Via AkkenCloud

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Managing the Office Know-It-All

Managing the Office Know-It-AllOf all of the annoying people in your office, the know-it-all may be the person you’d like to yell at the most. Unfortunately, yelling at your co-workers is generally never good practice and it’s more frowned upon when you’re the boss. So how do should you respond when you find yourself managing a person who thinks they know everything about everything, and are quick to display their vast knowledge to everybody in their presence?

Take the High Road

When your employee is guilty of correcting you for every little detail (even when they’re wrong), your first instinct is to shut them down. While this is necessary at times, you also need to take the high road. Practice empathy and understand that a confidence issue is probably at the heart of their behaviour. As such, pick your battles. Decide which situations can be brushed off and which ones need to be addressed.

Be Prepared

Even if they’re annoying and sometimes wrong, nine times out of ten, the know-it-all is usually quite smart and skilled at arguing. If you want to begin to “put them in their place” then you’re going to have to be prepared yourself. Identify situations where you know they are going thrive and organize before-hand, arming yourself with facts about the subject. As they start to correct you, ask probing questions. Either they will back down or, if you’re willing to be open-minded, you will learn something from them.

Know How It’s Affecting Your Team

As a manager, your job is to lead your entire team, ensuring they’re doing the best work they can do. When you identify the know-it-all, also identify who they’re aggravating. In some cases, it may just be you, especially if they’re vying for your job and only care about undermining you. In other situations, and more commonly, this person has no limits. They correct whoever they can in hopes of feeling superior. When your entire team is being affected, and a negative atmosphere is being created, fixing the problem immediately becomes a higher priority.

Deal with the Behaviour

As alluded to earlier, know-it-alls are smart and you do need to keep an open mind to ensure you’re not turning away innovative thinking that can move your team forward. As a leader, you also need to deal with behaviour that may be bringing down the team. Schedule a time to meet with your know-it-all and provide constructive feedback. Explain that you value their input but they need to consider their delivery. As with all constructive feedback, bring up specific examples of inappropriate behaviour and explain how they affected the team’s performance.

By understanding and addressing a know-it-all’s behaviours, you can bring out much value in an employee that has potential to be a strong asset to your team. Unfortunately, some people are lost causes. They are too stuck in their ways and genuinely believe that they are smarter than everyone else, and that they are a gift of knowledge to your office. This toxic attitude will be disastrous to your team and may cause top employees to leave. As such, your only solution will be to terminate the person’s employment at your company.

How have you dealt with know-it-alls in your company? Do you have any success stories of turning them into functioning team members, or does your experience point to having to fire them each time? Share your experience and advice with our readers in the comments below!

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Managers Need to Understand Remote Workers

If your office still doesn’t offer employees a “work-from-home” program of some sort, you’re behind the times. There are obvious exceptions (security, equipment) when a job needs to be done on location, but advancements in technology allow most office employees to do a large amount of their tasks remotely. Some companies take this a step further and embrace the trend of 100% remote employees, where a person’s primary workspace is their home office.

Remote work comes with a number of benefits for both employers and employees. Just the mention of it in a job description is sure to attract a few new applicants when posting jobs. But you can’t offer the perk and stop there. As the infographic below from TimeDoctor shows, remote workers have different motivations and managing them comes with new challenges. The infographic is compiled based on results of a study completed by employee engagement company, TINYpulse, and provides insight into remote workers’ motivation, demographics and unique struggles they have on the job.

Are Remote Workers Happier Than Office Employees? (Infographic)

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How to Use Google Drive to Track Candidates

How to Use Google Drive to Track CandidatesApplicant tracking systems (ATSs) are great tools for recruiters. The right ATS provides capability to easily accept resumes from candidates, sort and screen through those resumes, and organize them so qualified candidates can be contacted for future opportunities. Unfortunately, small companies rarely have the resources for a dedicated in-house recruiter, let alone technology such as a sophisticated applicant tracking system. However, in today’s world of free technologies and cloud storage, there are still opportunities to create a makeshift ATS with similar capabilities, albeit missing some bells and whistles. Enter Google Drive!

If you’re not familiar with Google Drive and are interested in exploring it to create an ATS, here are a few quick tips to get you started:

  1. Create a Google Account. The days of needing a Gmail address to have a Google Account are long over. Anybody can create a Google account, using any email address, which will give you access to the hundreds of Google’s available services. For the sake of this post, Google Drive is the only service you need to worry about.
  2. Start Creating Folders. Just like Windows Explorer, where you may already store most of your documents, Google Drive lets you create folders and sub-folders. To organize it like an ATS, you may want to create folders for each department in your company, and then common positions within each department. From there, you can create a folder for individual candidates where you can store notes and resume versions.
  3. Share Folders. As long as your co-workers also have created a Google Account, you can give them access to all or specific folders so they can also browse resumes. If at any point they receive a resume that they think would be helpful for you in the future, they can save it into one of your folders for when you need to hire.
  4. Verify Folder Ownership. Creating folders and sharing documents can start to get out of control as different people become owners of different folders. For security purposes, consider organizing your structure so only one person in the organization (ideally somebody who will never leave) is the owner of all folders. This will simplify things down the road should a folder owner leave your company. You might also consider creating a generic account for the company that is not associated with a specific person and, therefore, is never closed.
  5. Start Searching. As you know, Google is pretty awesome when it comes to search capabilities, and they bring this knowledge into Google Drive. When you’re searching for a candidate, type your criteria in the search bar and see which resumes pop-up.
  6. Upgrade Your Google Drive. As noted, one person at the company is going to “own” all of the folders. This doesn’t mean they physically own anything, but it means their Google Account is the official home for all files. It won’t be long before the free space Google provides to that account is used up. Given the very low monthly costs of an upgrade (around $3/month) this would be a good move.

That’s it! Google Drive does not replace the amazing capabilities of a regular applicant tracking system, and will not come without its flaws; however, if you’re a small company looking for an applicant tracking solution, Google Drive is a great place to start. How do you organize your resumes without an ATS?

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How to Write a Job Description (Video)

A proper job description is helpful when posting jobs during the recruiting process, but their usefulness goes beyond hiring. A perfect and detailed job description will ensure all employees are completing their tasks and allow for accountability if something falls apart.

Writing job descriptions can be daunting, especially when you’re starting from scratch or dealing with extremely outdated files. If you’re working in HR, or any sort of management, and find yourself in this position, have a look at this short video from HRCloud. Not only is it entertaining, but it gives some quick pointers on the basic elements of a job description.

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Getting to Know Your New Employees

Getting to Know Your New EmployeesAs a leader, having a good relationship with your team is a key to success. A way to start building this relationship is by getting to know and understand each individual team member — what they are like as professionals and what makes them tick as a person. This, of course, needs to be done without moving into inappropriate areas of their personal life.

Whether you’re a manager who just hired a new team member or new manager joining a team, you’re in a situation where you must get to know people. With all of the work already piling up, how can you possibly make time to get to know your employees, aside from sending them a long, intrusive survey?

First, don’t waste any time. Although it may seem awkward learning about people, imagine how awkward it is when you still have no idea about who they are after they’ve been working under you for a year. With that in mind, spread out the “getting to know you” questions to avoid bombarding a new employee.  This will also make it easier for you to remember the information. Finally, when a person tells you about themselves, always listen, show interest and understand what their saying. This will help you recall it later.

As a manager, you want to get to know your new employees on two different levels – professionally and, to a lesser degree, personally. Professionally, learn about a person’s strengths and weaknesses, their experiences, their goals and their work habits. It’s much easier to lead somebody when you know how they learn and organize themselves. Never pry into an employee’s personal information but if they offer it, understand what motivates them, as well as what they may be dealing with outside of the office.

So how do you go about gathering all of this information? Here are a few simple tips and strategies:

  • Ask other managers. Especially if you’re new or if your employee came from another department, one of your colleagues may be able to provide input. This isn’t limited internally, as you know from the hiring process, references can provide valuable insight.
  • Schedule one-on-ones. Regular meetings are an opportunity to ask what would make things more interesting for them and how things can improve around the office. Their responses will teach you some of their motivations, priorities, and values.
  • Work on a project. Rather than always being a “manager”, join a project and work with your team at the same level. They will become more comfortable with you and share more as a result.
  • Be open to conversation. An open door policy and a commitment to a few minutes of casual chit-chat each day can go a long way in getting to know somebody.
  • Some (most?) people dread them, but when time permits, the right setting with the right icebreaker can help you get to know somebody and be a phenomenal team builder.
  • Team socials. After work, get together for activities. It can be a pub night, exercise, or celebrate birthdays and achievements.
  • Bring treats. It is possible to buy love, at least when it’s with food. Bringing in baked goods or having a bowl of candy on your desk can start great conversation.
  • Work on conflicts together. Adversity and conflict resolution can strengthen a relationship. People often expose a different side of themselves when working through a tough situation.
  • Ask interesting questions. There are plenty of resources on the web with questions to ask to get to know somebody professionally, or quirky questions to see their softer side.

It would be unrealistic to expect an employee to open up right away, but with some time, effort, and a smile, it won’t be long before you know more about an employee than just what’s on their resume. What steps have you taken to get to know a new employee?