Recruiting Strategies for Small Businesses

Though we all wished we'd be in a post-pandemic frame of mind in 2022, we're not quite there yet. The problem is that thanks to fewer active job seekers, the "great resignation," and a persistent skills gap, good talent is getting harder to find – and costing more to attract.


Hiring new employees right now for your small business is challenging. So we have pulled together recruiting strategies to improve recruitment success.




Refine your brand identity

Surveys show that an overwhelming majority of candidates evaluate an employer's company brand before applying for a job. So, if you're not paying attention to your branding efforts as an employer, you can be sure that job candidates are. If a prospective employee visits your website and isn't inspired by what they see, they won't even consider applying for the position n. You have to create interest with great branding first.


Create a great careers page on your website

Your careers page is your shop window. While there are many ways to advertise that you're hiring, the starting point is an eye-catching, informative careers page. Whether candidates see a post on a job board or hear about it through word-of-mouth or social media, they will usually head to your careers page to find out more and apply. So there needs to be something worth visiting when they get the Highlight your culture, benefits, the team and provide detailed job descriptions

Like our Ellie Brands Careers Page, you can keep it simple or create a more comprehensive experience like Slack.


Pro Tip: Providing a backlink in online job postings and earning clicks to your site from it can improve your search position. So make sure you provide a link back to your jobs page of your own website in any online job post.



Write clear job descriptions

With job openings in the United States at a record high, it's never been more essential to write job descriptions that stand out and pique the interest of qualified candidates. Especially for small businesses, job descriptions are how applicants get their first impressions of your company, so it's wise to be honest, clear, and strategic in your approach. List out an overview, responsibilities, skills and experiences needed, and job benefits, as well as clear instructions on how to apply.


For candidates, the salary, benefits, and roles' goals are all top of mind. Candidates also seek positions with growth opportunities. Let them know you've charted a course for future growth within your organization.


Showcase benefits and employee perks

if you're going to attract high-quality staff, your company needs to offer high-quality benefits - and that means offering full-time employees at least life, medical and dental coverage. If your small business does not have an employee benefits program, talk to your insurance company about setting one up. You can also speak to your Chamber of Commerce or other local business organization. They typically offer more inexpensive group insurance, including employee benefits programs.


Make your company more attractive to potential employees by offering flexible hours, work at home options, fun benefits like bringing a pet to work, babysitting and childcare services, summer hours, performance incentives, and philanthropy initiatives.


Post the position on online job boards

Now that the careers page and your job description are in place, it's time to go out and find employees.

You're no longer limited to candidates in your area or social circle thanks to online job boards. With a few clicks, you can advertise opportunities to your industry's top candidates.


Try posting your job listing on a mix of job boards. The more boards you can post the job on, the better. Cast a wide net, and don't forget to include a link back to your website job posting.

  • Indeed

  • LinkedIn

  • ZipRecruiter

  • Glassdoor

  • CareerBuilder

  • Upwork

  • Snagajob

  • Industry-specific job boards

  • College and university boards


Pro Tip: Don't post your jobs on Friday evening. By Monday, they'll be last week's news. Wait until Sunday evening or Monday morning and advertise your roles when the candidates are most active. Most job boards use freshness as a factor in ranking job search results.


Spread the word through social media

Once you've posted your job opportunity, it's time to put your social media skills to good use. First things first: create an attractive social media graphic using a tool like Canva or a trusted graphic designer. Write a compelling yet simple post and include the link to your job description on your website. Share your post on all your business and personal pages. Tag friends that could help you spread the word or know interested candidates. Next share it across your company and partners and encourage them to share with their networks on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.


Don't forget the power of grassroots efforts and signage

Look for local recruiting events or job fairs you can attend. Start by contacting local universities or trade schools. Then create some vinyl well-designed signs and hang them on the exterior of your building. You may even find opportunities to hang signs at parks and event venues for a small sponsorship or advertising fee.





Ask for referrals

The absolute best recruiting strategy would be to ask for referrals from your network. Ask fellow business owners, friends, family, and your employees if they know anyone looking for a job. Go to local business networking events (the Chamber of Commerce) and ask the other people who attend if they know anyone on the market for a job. Referrals are the No. 1 source for candidates. People usually refer good people, as the person they refer reflects on them.



The time to boost your recruiting practices is right no . Develop a great employer brand, try out different approaches, use niche job boards, and take advantage of referrals to grow your workforc . These small business recruitment strategies will ensure you have the right talent in place to expand and thrive.

Ellie Brands is a branding and web design agency in Cincinnati that works with leaders to scale their brands and inspire demand. 

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