Small care providers must compete with larger care providers when advertising their care vacancies. Bigger care providers have marketing muscle, HR departments, recruiting systems and advertising budgets. Some even have dedicated internal recruiters.
With fewer resources, less time and smaller budgets, how can a small care provider compete and recruit successfully?
This article offers a few important recruiting tips to help small care providers succeed on a budget.
Care jobs are varied, rewarding and important, but salaries are low by national standards and care jobs can be misunderstood.
When advertising care vacancies, the basics really matter. Our recruiting tips for small care providers will help you to recruit more successfully and hire great people. We cover:
- How to advertise
- Where to advertise
- How to respond to job applications
Recruiting Tips 1: How to Advertise
It’s time to make job advertising your personal battleground, because advertising is where you can win.
Jobseekers don’t read your job advert
Is your mailbox is full of irrelevant job applications? If so, it may be the case that:
- jobseekers are applying without reading your advert,
- your advert describes your company rather than the job, or
- you’re making it too easy to apply for your vacancy.
Before reading you job advert in full, people want:
- A short summary that confirms the job is the right type of job for them
- An indication of where the job is located
- The working hours and salary.
Make it easy to find this information. It is good practice to summarise what you are looking for in your first paragraph and confirm the job title in the first sentence.
Example first paragraph of a Care Worker job advert
“We are looking for a Care Worker to support our elderly customers in their own homes within the Crawley area. Our customers have very individual care requirements and we like our Care Workers to get to know our customers well . You’ll be helping them to lead full and independent lives by assisting with meal preparation, taking medication and getting ready for bed, among many other duties. Shift patterns are flexible and we’ll give you all the training you need.”
Bring your job to life
Your next challenge is to describe the role in full and make it come to life for jobseekers. Help them to visualise their new role. Try to pack your job description with lost of detail:
- Who will they be caring for?
- What sort of activities will they be performing?
- What will their own team be like and what are the unique challenges of the role?
- Who will they report to and what is their manager’s ambition for the company and its services?
Make it easy to find the details they want
Use headings and bullet points to help jobseekers scan and qualify your vacancy in just a few seconds. Easy qualification increases the prospects of your advert being read in full by the right candidates. For a Support Worker job, your headings could include:
- The Role of Support Worker
- Education and Experience required to be our Support Worker
- Support Worker Remuneration
- Location and our Care Company
- Our Recruitment Process
Use the singular
Try to use advert titles that are singular and not plural, like “Care Worker” rather than “Care Workers”. Advert titles like “Care Workers wanted” are less trusted than a plain job title. If that advert is on a long advertising cycle people might start to question whether you ever hire anyone.
Job boards also prefer the singular job title. Some job boards, like Indeed, might also ignore your advert in search results. That’s because forever open vacancies titled in the pleural appear to be fishing and less likely to be genuine.
Location with benefits
Care sector workers prefer jobs in their locale, but your specific site location might have benefits. Perhaps shops are nearby, you work in air-conditioned offices or you have on-site parking that makes it easy to drop in and out. If you can find a benefit, it’s a good idea to mention it.
Optimise your job adverts to increase the number of people who can find them.
Let’s make sure that people can find your advert on any job board. Try repeating the job title a few times throughout your advert. For every 350 words, consider typing the job title 3 or 4 times. By doing this, job boards might push your advert further up their search results.
If you want to know more about job advertising, read optimise your adverts to get more job applications.
Recruiting Tips 2: Where to advertise
Did you know that you can advertise Care Jobs for free? Your key resources are:
- GOV Find a Job
- Google for Jobs
- Your website and Social Media
Your free job boards
According to our research, Indeed is the biggest provider of care job applications. The great news for you is that Indeed allows all UK employers to advertise their vacancies for free. They call their free job postings, organic job listings. Indeed also allows you to sponsor your adverts. By paying to sponsor your Indeed job adverts, they will stay higher in search results for longer.
Google for Jobs is free, but it’s not a job board in the conventional sense. If you follow the link you’ll see Google for Jobs at the top of the search results. Posting jobs manually is not possible. Instead google fetches your jobs from your website and presents them to jobseekers. You will need an Applicant Tracking System to do that for you or you can develop two key additions to your careers page:
- The structured job data that Google requires and
- An application form for your job.
Adzuna is a useful job board too. It might not be a go-to jobsite for care workers, but jobseekers could be attracted by Adzuna’s occasional re-posts on LinkedIn.
Advertise jobs on your website and social media
Your own website is a valuable advertising option, so keeping it updated with current vacancies is essential. Some people don’t trust job boards with their details because they know that their current employer or other recruiters might have access to it. Instead, some prefer to apply directly on your website, so try to offer an electronic application form. A good Applicant Tracking System for care providers can make posting jobs and receiving applicants really easy for you.
Social Media is free and easy to use. Place your job on twitter and other locations. You just never know who might see it. Again, jobseekers may benefit from a application form on your website. We all want to avoid losing people just as quickly as we find them.
Recruiting Tips 3: How to respond
Good people don’t hang around for long, so speeeeeed is name of the game. Our advice is to organise some standard messages so you can communicate quickly with your best applicants. If you do everything by email, Microsoft can help you with that. Create some templates on Outlook by following these steps:
- Create a new email by completing the subject and body
- Select File > Save As
- For ‘Save as Type’, choose Outlook Template
- Give it a filename and save.
Try telling good applicants that you like their details just as quickly as you can. Politely declining all the applicants who you won’t interview will be appreciated (honest) and your brand is at stake if you don’t. You might also want some people to return in future when they have more experience or qualifications.
We do understand that when it gets busy, managing communication with lots of applicants can be overwhelming. So, when your recruitment admin grows, you might want to consider an online Applicant Tracking System (ATS) for Care. That will help you to post jobs everywhere, speed through shortlisting and communicate with everyone quickly. Imagine recruiting with 90% less effort.
Recruiting tips summary
Our essential recruiting tips for small care providers are all about the basics. That’s because getting the basics right will help you attract higher quality job applications and stay ahead of your competitors.
If time is short and you feel that you’re missing out on key candidates, try an Applicant Tracking System for Care. CVMinder ATS is low cost, manages the whole recruitment process and saves lots and lots of time.
You experiences, comments and suggestions
If you’re recruiting for a smaller care provider, why not tell us about your own experiences? We’d also love to hear from you if you have any other recruiting tips for smaller care providers.
Like our advice? Why not give it a thumbs up and share? Many thanks in advance for taking the time.