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How to recruit effectively in the engineering sector

There’s no escaping the fact that engineering is a vital part of the economy in the UK. And that’s not just in terms of significant turnover, but also with regards to employment. It’s thought that for every new engineering role an additional two jobs are created in the economy.

Forecasts predict that engineering employers will need to recruit 265,000 skilled entrants annually to meet demand through to 2024 – a big jump from 2020’s prediction of 182,000.

And filling that demand will generate an additional £27 billion per year for the economy from 2022.

Competition for talent is a fierce one in the current candidate-led market, while the projected demand means the number of engineering apprentices and graduates will need to double.

So, how can your company get ahead of the competition and win the battle for your ideal candidate?

Engaging and appealing job ads

No doubt you want to attract the best people to work for your company, so that means selling the benefits of them doing so, by articulating your employee value proposition and employer brand.

Let people know about your company and what it’s like to work there in terms of culture. Those looking for jobs don’t just apply to do a specific job, but because they are attracted to the prospect of being part of a particular company with a particular culture.

As well as highlighting your company’s culture, it is important to get the job title right and put a salary – or range – on the advert.

There are a vast number of roles within the world of engineering and missing the mark on the job title by making them vague or misleading means your job ad may never be found by your desired audience, or you could find the right candidates count themselves out and the wrong candidates count themselves in.

And it’s estimated that job adverts with at least a salary range on get 30% more applicantswhile two in three jobseekers are more likely to apply for roles if there is salary information.

Candidates are unlikely to move for a lower salary unless looking for a career change or can see the opportunity will enable them to progress very quickly, so including salary info can not only rule people in but save time later down the line.

Package / Benefits

Making sure that you highlight the benefits of working at your company is also key. Be wary of the fact that what people are looking for in terms of perks has also changed.

The days of people wanting free pizza Fridays, or a table tennis table have gone, with candidates preferring to know if there are opportunities for professional development, both in terms of potential progression up the ladder and training courses, and whether there are any exciting projects on the horizon.

While salary is obviously important, those seeking jobs in the current climate are wanting a little more from their employment.

Flexible working opportunities

You can’t ignore the fact that many candidates want at least a degree of flexibilitywhether that’s in terms of location or hours of work.

A desired working week is often no longer Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm all from the company’s office.

If you can offer some flexibility, then make sure it is promoted clearly within the job advert and across all other forms of communication. The flexibility of your opportunity can be a deciding factor between a candidate choosing you over another employer’s offer.

Getting your job adverts in front of the right people

Once the job advert copy is written then it’s key to get it seen by the right people. Those with email job alerts set up with job boards will be notified naturally when the criteria of their search is met. 

But don’t underestimate the power of social mediaUsing the different platforms can really boost who sees your job advert, whether that be from standard posting, spreading the word in groups or targeted messaging on LinkedIn.

Get applicants involved

Once you’ve got a suitable candidate – or candidates – applying for your vacancy, then managing applications efficiently and in a timely manner is essential.

Remember, it’s a candidate-led market so if you delay your selection process you will likely find that the best talent has been snapped up by the competition.

That’s not to say you should dive head first into making a hasty decision but engage with those preferred applicants and book them in for the next stage of the process. If applicants don’t reply via email, give them a call because the message could easily have got lost.

What now?

If you’d like to find out how our job advertising and recruitment marketing expertise can be used to make sure your job adverts catch the eye and engage your ideal applicants, then get in touch with us at JVP Group.

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