Editor’s Note: This five-week series is dedicated to examining the five most common Ps of a typical marketing mix and assessing how they relate to recruitment. Today’s post focuses on price; the remaining concepts – people, placement and promotion – will run in sequential order every Tuesday over the next few weeks. For a look at the assessment of product, check out my post from last week.
A number of factors contribute to the final price of a good or service, including the cost of materials or labor to produce the final product, overhead and distribution costs, and desired profitability. Other things like discounts, commission, and marketing costs to acquire a customer impact the bottom line as well. To learn from marketing, consider what it will cost a candidate to accept your job offer.
Seldom is a career opportunity a perfect match for a candidate. In most cases, there may need to be a trade off of desired benefits or a minor sacrifice of one benefit for another. Most job seekers bargain with the variables when deciding whether they will apply for a job. For example, a job may require a longer commute but offer greater advancement potential. Or, a company with a stronger brand reputation may offer a smaller starting salary than a lesser-known company.
Understand the price a candidate may have to pay to accept a particular job so you can proactively emphasize the redeeming qualities of the opportunity that offset costs. Don’t overlook how helpful it can be to share information about the realities of a job. For example, say you know your target talent has between five to eight years of experience and prefers urban living; but your job is in a suburb that requires relocation or a 50 to 60 minute commute. Address it! While it’s unrealistic to include this type of detail in a job advertisement, social media is the ideal forum to elaborate on things beyond essential qualifications and job functions. Seek out employees who have a reverse commute and get them to share their perspective on Facebook. They can give details about taking public transportation and shortcuts they’ve found that make the commute manageable. Whatever the topic, this is just one of the ways to remove obstacles that could prevent your target talent from applying to and accepting your job.
Try this exercise: Before you can effectively anticipate the costs that might accompany a job or working at your company, you must fully understand the profile of your target audience. As you’ll learn later with the remaining Ps, the nuances that define your ideal candidate are incredibly important in the placement and promotion of your recruitment message. Make a list of observations about your current workforce. What similarities exist among your staff? Are these characteristics among departments or do they change as you move from entry-level to senior leadership positions? While this may seem simple at first, the patterns you observe can start to shape how you seek out and tailor your message to attract the right fit for a specific job.
Bottom line: Nearly every decision – from purchasing a product to accepting a job – involves trade-offs. Resist the nature to be arrogant about what your company can and cannot offer a potential applicant. Seek out information, both about your ideal candidate and the specific position, to understand what financial and personal costs might affect your ability to attract and retain the best people for the job.
What other ways do you think price impacts recruitment? Share your thoughts below!