Recruitment practices must embrace innovation to support staffing demand over the festive period.

The festive season is well and truly upon us. Like most industries, the retail and logistics sector experiences extensive seasonality, with many companies declaring a 500% increase of revenue over the festive period.

To take advantage of the uplift in sales and productivity over this period, companies fight for talent both within and outside of their industries. Festive sales are crucial for retail businesses, and it is crucial that the right personnel are drafted in to help the busy periods run smoothly and maximise profits.

Modern job seeking practices have changed dramatically over the past 5 years, with the companies who do not adapt to the market tending to be left behind. A study by Deloitte found that only 8% of companies advertise and utilise a mobile platform for the recruiting process, yet a report by Glass Door found that around 79% of job seekers are likely to use social media in their job search. This figure jumps to 86% for younger job seekers who are in the first 10 years of their careers. That is an unbelievable disparity when you consider the potential that advertising roles on a mobile platform has, especially during the festive period when potential employees will be looking for extra income.

An issue that arises when using temporary staff, especially during periods of heightened customer demand, is the need to train the staff quickly and efficiently to meet company standards. It is not a great use of time if you spend an hour or more at the start of each shift explaining to new recruits what the specifics of their roles will be, especially if you have a sharp increase of staff during a busy period.

But there are easy solutions to this conundrum when a company embraces digital platforms. Downloadable or streamable video training is easy to produce and convenient for the employee to consume, either on their commute to the shift or as they get ready. Using video training means the employee arrives at their shift ready to get straight to work, and therefore you will not lose at least two employees for a period when you need all hands on deck. ELogic Learning have found that 67% of people use mobile devices to learn, a number that will likely only increase. Now is the time to embrace video training.

Of course, if you want to get the most out of this important period, it is not just about having the correct number of staff; it is about having the right staff for the job. Algorithmic recruitment processes tend to focus heavily on experience, and although that is not necessarily the wrong thing to do, it is also important to factor in a potential employee’s personality.

Psychometrics are becoming increasingly important in the recruitment process. A study by HR Magazine found that 81% of companies that implemented the practice said that they expected to make more reliable and less risky decisions as a result in 2016, compared to only 67% who said the same thing in 2010. This uptick in trust is likely due to the increased accuracy psychometric algorithms have in the recruitment process, and the success rate of placed candidates. With increasing levels of trust in algorithmic psychometrics, it is imperative that the larger retail and logistics companies embrace the technology.

It is not difficult to embrace mobile platforms, yet the retail and logistics sectors have some catching up to do. With the festive period just around the corner, a strong digital recruitment strategy will help a company maximise profits, have the most dependable staff and make the most of the busiest period of the year.


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