7 Tips To Attract Top Talent in a Highly Competitive Market
We're hiring sign shows the tight job market and the need for companies to attract top talent.

Today’s job market is a tight, competitive space for the vast majority of employers. Consider this. There’s less than one unemployed American (0.7) to each open position. As a result, many companies are scrambling to attract top talent, especially in technology roles.

If you’re currently searching to fill critical openings at your organization, what can help you to make your candidate search a success? Let’s discuss seven helpful tips that will point you in the right direction.

Tip #1: Know What You’re Offering To Attract Top Talent

As a first, fundamental step toward attracting top talent, it’s vital that you “know what you’re selling” from a job perspective. In other words, you can answer the question: “What’s going to attract a candidate to this role?”

Of course, goals and preferences will vary from one candidate to the next. However, if you can focus on at least one aspect of the position as a key “selling point” (e.g., a high salary, opportunities for advancement, exceptional work/life balance, a winning culture, etc.), then you’ll be in a better position to persuade top performers to sign up with your company.

Tip #2: Research What a Competitive Salary Looks Like

The median salary for a tech job has risen higher and higher over the years — and continues to do so. For example, one study found that the average tech salary rose 6.9 percent (or $6,707) between 2020 and 2021 alone. Now employers are looking at annual wages of well over $100,000 per role in many major tech hubs, including Denver, CO.

How does this impact your candidate search? In order to win over top talent, you must understand what a competitive salary looks like for your local market, and then aim to match or exceed that threshold. Of course, you should take a holistic view of your compensation package. Highlight other key features that would appeal to prospective employees. These may include health insurance benefits, PTO, development training, and so forth.

Tip #3: Understand What’s Important to Candidates

Apart from offering a competitive wage, it’s also crucial to understand what candidates are looking for in their job search. What’s important to them? Is it only financial compensation? What about working for an organization that shares their values? Are they interested in growth opportunities and career advancement? How about work/life balance and flexible scheduling?

Wages alone aren’t always the driving force behind candidate decisions. In a LinkedIn survey conducted by The Doyle Group, only 22 percent of respondents left their last job to seek a higher salary. In addition, 29 percent left to seek a position with more growth opportunities. Moreover, a November 2021 Gartner survey found that over half (52 percent) of employees may leave their current employer if flexible work policies are not implemented or continued. If that’s the case with existing employees, wouldn’t it make sense for companies to offer these flexible schedules as a means of attracting candidates?

Tip #4: Highlight Your Mission Statement, Culture, and Values

You want to hire a candidate that is aligned with your company’s values, and fits into the established culture. In order to achieve that goal, it’s important to be as transparent as possible. Make sure your mission statement and values are clearly stated on job descriptions, on your company’s official website, and on social media posts. Highlight your culture by means of employee testimonials, “behind-the-scenes” videos, and other means. 

Tip #5: Monitor Your Online Presence

Online recruiting is not only about posting your job openings on the appropriate sites. It also involves, to a large extent, reputation management. You can expect candidates in today’s market to conduct a lot of online research on their own — and that includes exploring company reviews on sites like GlassDoor and Indeed. You may also have candidates engage with your company over social media.

The key here is to attract top talent by being responsive on your social accounts, and do what you can to maintain a good online reputation. Especially when someone submits an application, be sure to reach out to them in a timely manner and provide them with an outline for next steps, if needed.

Tip #6: Streamline Your Hiring Process

A single candidate may have several irons in the fire, and perhaps even multiple job offers on the table at any given point. They may not be willing or able to wait on a slow response time from a prospective employer. The solution to this problem is to streamline your hiring process ahead of time, and make it as seamless for the candidate as possible.

For example, attract top talent by determining well in advance:

  • How to effectively compose each job description
  • When the applicant will hear from you
  • How many screens and interviews must take place, and whether exceptions can be made for any of them
  • What the interview process will be like (for instance, what standardized questions will your interviewers ask each candidate?)

Eliminating friction points from your hiring process will allow you to make quicker decisions, and keep candidates engaged for as long as possible.

Tip #7: Attract Top Talent By Engaging Recruiting Experts

Last but not least, consider partnering with a recruiting agency like The Doyle Group to facilitate your search for top talent. At The Doyle Group, our team has years of experience in assisting clients to build high-performing technology teams. We know the IT industry inside and out, and are familiar with current market conditions both locally (around Denver, CO) and nationwide.

In conclusion, it can be a challenge to attract top talent in today’s extremely competitive market. However, if you implement the seven tips discussed above, you’ll be in an excellent position to find the right candidates for your open positions, and enjoy sustainable growth as a result.