Essential Recruiting Tips for Small Care Providers
Social Care companies want to deliver great quality care. That requires good people, but recruiting them is a big challenge for many smaller care companies. This article offers some recruiting tips to small care providers who need to succeed on a budget.
The Care Market
Let’s get straight to the elephant in the room; good people are in short supply in the care sector. Whilst care jobs are varied, rewarding and important, we compete against other businesses, like supermarkets, for the same people.
Larger care providers have marketing muscle. They also have HR departments, subscription job boards and even dedicated internal recruiters. So, with fewer resources, less time and smaller budgets, how can a small care provider compete and recruit successfully?
As with most things in life, the basics matter most, but over 95% of small care providers are unaware of these points. 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
Your advert is the foundation of your recruitment campaign, but often receives less time and attention that it deserves. It’s time to make job advertising your personal battleground, because advertising is where you can win.
Your competitors aren’t advertising experts
We know this because we have read lots of adverts. In fact, your competitors often fall into the same traps that you can avoid after reading this article.
Poor adverts often present just a job title and a set of generic requirements, like “must be caring”. These types of advert tend not to excite the best people.
Remember that advertising is your battleground, so your adverts are going to be much more appealing.
Jobseekers don’t have time to read every advert
Take a look at your inbox and you may find plenty of irrelevant job applications to prove the point. But, jobseekers will take the time to read your advert if you give them the right clues and queues.
Before reading any detail, your jobseeker wants to know:
- What your job is (not just the job title),
- Where it’s located and
- Working hours and salary.
You’ll want to make it really easy to find this information, so it’s good practice to describe what you are looking for in your first sentence.
“We are looking for a Care Worker to support our elderly customers in their own homes in the Crawley area. You will be joining an outstanding team of …”
Bring your job to life
Your next challenge is to make your job come alive for jobseekers, so they can see themselves in their new role. Try to pack your job description with 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 jump around your advert
Section headings and bullet points help jobseekers to scan your advert for other clues and queues so they can qualify your job in a just few seconds. If they can find information quickly, you’ll increase the prospects of your advert being read in full. 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
Stick to the singular
Try to use job titles that are singular and not plural, like “Care Workers”. Always avoid adverts that remain open forever. Both types are less trusted by jobseekers and some job boards, like Indeed, might also ignore your advert in search results. It’s because they appear less likely to offer a genuine hiring opportunity.
Tip: If a job never closes, that could mean that you’re always hiring and if that’s true, you must have a huge, successful business by now. If you don’t, jobseekers might sense that something is wrong.
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.