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Attracting the Best Employees

    Attracting the Best Employees

    What you’ll learn to do: Explain how retailers can attract the best employees

    Photograph of five individuals sitting around an office table. All five are wearing business attire.In a good economy with low unemployment, the challenge of finding the best employees becomes even more important. Retail has been a historically low-paying industry, so attracting great talent may involve non-monetary incentives such as great work hours, an inviting company culture or other creative perks.

    Defining clearly what is needed for a particular position, then recruiting, interviewing and hiring, is another task of the human resources department. HR will work with department managers to clearly outline the skill set required for each position.


    • Describe the steps to recruiting top talent
    • Identify selection and training techniques to develop star employees
    • Discuss methods to motivate retail employees
    • Predict the benefit of a more diverse and inclusive workforce

    Recruiting Talent

    Recruiting new employees is a preliminary step HR management teams must take in order to properly build a retail organization’s workforce. There are various factors to consider when recruiting new employees for retail work, one of which is ensuring that highly-qualified candidates are enlisted for the existing openings. Finding talented candidates for jobs within a retail organization can be competitive because other retailers who have vacancies may have larger budgets to attract the same aspiring job-seekers. Other sectors, such as manufacturing, may have openings with more attractive hours (no nights and weekends), and better hourly pay. Getting the word spread about job openings before the competition, and with a clear outline about the clean, cool and fun retail work environment is essential in recruiting a competent staff.

    Job Description

    Newspaper want ad-style graphic calling for a social media managerOne way HR management teams can draw in potential candidates for recruitment is by writing a job description that stands out from the company’s competitors. The first impression that potential new employees will have of a retail company’s hiring practices is likely from reading the job description. One strategy for HR management when writing job descriptions is to make them appealing to everyone.

    “When writing the job description, jettison anything that may be filtering out quality people — examples might include rigorous expectations of number of years of experience, coming from a set of high-profile universities, or studying a certain curriculum that may not have been available.”[1] It should be a priority that HR attracts quality candidates and not just candidates that fit in with the rest of the retail store’s workforce. Another strategy HR may use when executing a job description is to provide an explanation of why the retail store is hiring candidates for that particular position. Using phrases such as “to improve customer relations” may provide an allure for job-seekers because it presents the applicant with a goal and not just working towards the company’s bottom-line. The overall objective of HR when composing a job description is to find suitable candidates for the retail store’s workforce. If a job description clearly identifies what the candidate will be doing at the outset, there are no questions about what specifically the job-seekers responsibilities are once they are hired. If HR is unclear about what the newly hired employee will be doing then “many managers make mistake after mistake, hiring the wrong person again and again.”[2]

    Recruitment Processes

    With the modernizations of social media, spreading the word that a retail business is hiring can go much faster now than it did fifteen years ago. Websites and apps like LinkedIn provide HR with the ability to seek out individuals who are qualified and notify them when a job is open within that retail store. Creating job postings on social media or on the company’s website is another way to get the word out about a job opening via the internet. Choosing the proper forum for reaching potential candidates is essential in finding suitable applicants. “Of course, the Internet has become the leading venue for posting job openings, but don’t overlook targeted industry publications and local newspapers.”[3]

    If there are not enough qualified applicants putting in for a particular job, some companies resort to temp agencies. This means of recruitment allows for retail organizations to try out potential candidates at minimal risk because they are only obligated to work for a provisional amount of time. If a temporary employee is not working out, HR can choose not to ask them to return once their temporarily designated period of employment is over. Other methods of recruitment can be to conduct a hiring seminar at the retail store itself or HR might consider attending a local job fair.

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