During peak staffing seasons like late Spring, a lot of staffing companies are left scrambling trying to fill many openings that only a few short months ago they were pounding the doors for.
The result is that companies begin battling it out for good workers. Craigslist ads go up. Signs "$15/hr assemby" appear at big intersections. "$50 sign up bonus!". "$75 referral bonus!"
One tool that doesn't get the play it should is job fairs. I'm not talking well-organized job fairs with multiple employers. I mean simply that you get with your client and set up to welcome anyone to come visit the job site, check things out, and fill out an application.
Actually doing the job fair isn't hard. Donuts. Coffee. Bagels. And staffing software.
The rest of the job fair is all meet and greet, and can be a great time for casual conversation with team applicants, team members and client staff.
It's the before and after that take a lot of work. You've got to get the people to the job fair, and afterwards you have to keep their attention and get them placed. Move slowly and you're sure to lose applicants.
Beforehand, it pays to invest in publicity. A job fair is an event - news. That makes it legit for free and paid media. A simple announcement might get you some traffic, but why not do it right and make a great video describing the company, the job and the event.
David Dourgarian, CEO of Tempworks, says his clients get best results by posting an online application link right on the videos. "A video makes a great segue to the online application. Make the app easy and fast, and you'll win over candidates."
Getting people to pre-apply online saves everyone time and gets you early buy-in attention from candidates, says Dourgarian.
Shop the video to the media. Advertise it on Facebook. Put it up on Snapchat. Youtube. Get the people in the door.
The after-event marketing is also fair game. Create a short video during the event and post it afterwards. Give it the same face time as your pre-fair video.
Getting good candidates in the door is only part of the battle. You still need to get placed and committed to the job.
This is a good time to review your pay rates. In tight markets, bidding wars for temp workers erupts. You've gone through a lot of work. Don't lose them because you didn't price the market right.
It all needs to make sense for you, the client and the workers.