Hiring? It’s hard right now. The pandemic shifted the marketplace from employer-driven to employee-driven. Creating a competitive and attractive employment package, whether for hourly staff or C-suite executives, is a challenge in what feels like a continuously shifting and unpredictable economic landscape. Knowledge is power.
What do you really know about your market? Our team works with clients in 40 cities across the country. With wages increasing, inflation in play and a changing economic landscape, our team is hearing a lot of questions from human resources partners and business leaders who want to know what makes a competitive compensation and benefits package.
A quick Google search leads to online articles, business publications and industry associations that tell what should be in a compensation package. But those articles don’t dig deep into the details needed to really understand how to sell your business to job seekers by creating a market intelligence report.
Digging a level deeper to create a report means market mapping with information including employment/unemployment stats, trends related to labor participation rates, geographic data and specific industry challenges and trends. We’re talking hard and soft data.
Business culture. National companies build a culture from the top down. Reality is, cities across the country each have their own unique culture. Milwaukee is not like Tampa. Tampa is not like Indianapolis. And Indianapolis is not like Seattle. When documenting the marketplace learn about the city culture, demographics and psychographics to get a good sense about what they want in their workplace.
It’s been said time and time again: Hire for culture. Executives who have worked in a certain industry for years may be seeking change. What makes your business culture different than a competitor in the same industry? Perhaps your culture fits.
Pay rate. Know the competitive rate in the city or town where you’re hiring. We’re all reading stories about the $15 per hour pay rate offered by McDonalds. But then another employer outdoes that with $20 per hour plus tips and bonuses. Having a market intelligence report that gives insight into wages, overtime, tips for hourly staff along with base pay, bonuses and commission for C-Suite executives coupled with projected inflation rates is critical to the offer.
Benefits. Medical and dental insurance, workers’ compensation and disability, and life insurance are all standard expectations in a benefits package. Is there something you can offer not just to be attractive to job seekers, but also to retain staff? A recent example is Amazon’s education assistance announcement offering more than 750,000 operations employees in the US fully funded college tuition, including books and fees.
Extra incentives. True, not all companies can offer benefits the scale of Amazon, yet companies can get creative and stay within budget. A business outside of Indianapolis needed to retain workers who were ghosting them a few weeks into the job. The offer to incentivize those hourly workers: Work the full week and get a $200 bonus. Sounds crazy, but the cost is less than finding and training a new worker. This is the type of intelligence needed to be competitive.
Mental health and self-care. According to a Harvard Business Review article, “Although employers have responded with initiatives like mental health days or weeks, four-day workweeks, and enhanced counseling benefits or apps, they’re not enough. Employees need and expect sustainable and mentally healthy workplaces, which requires taking on the real work of culture change.”
What can your business do to support employees at every level? Are your leaders trained to recognize mental health issues? Consider a ban on email after hours, no-meeting days for staff and other boundaries to create a healthy workplace.
Digging deeper and using market intelligence shows companies are responding to the current economic climate by creating attractive packages for job seekers who will offer the right skills and talents to fit your culture now and long into the future.