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Many employers, especially in the professional services sector, are experiencing difficulties attracting and retaining early years talent. In this article, The KC Group explore making a difference by focusing on the first 3 months of employment.

To attract and manage talented people, employers and our clients should make sure that new recruits receive the best possible introduction to the workplace and industry from day one. In accordance with the sector’s requirements, their career paths should be well supported and clearly outlined.

What does a supported early career path look like in practice?

In addition to matching trainees with experienced professionals and promoting continuous professional development in the workplace, employers can do much more to win over new employees.

Employers should paint an accurate picture of what their apprentice’s role will entail, because today’s apprentices are entering a new and evolving work environment.

New recruits expect an authentic view of how things work in practice, and anything less is considered disingenuous.

An individual applying for an apprenticeship in accounting, for example, should be aware that while it is important to stay focused on their studies, employers will support them in allowing them time to do so, there will inevitably be busy periods when they must meet workplace demands. When demand peaks, intense working days may be necessary, although it’s not usual.

The hybrid working practices of many employers have hampered trainees’ progress, despite their desire to put the pandemic behind them.

Providing structured and informal training based on core skills and behaviours is crucial for ensuring employee success. Recruits should also develop and nurture ‘soft’ skills such as time management, delegation, and communication with clients, even in professions requiring exams for advancement.

It may be necessary for employers to focus on ‘training the trainers’ in order to ensure they are sufficiently prepared to motivate recruits and deliver the right information.

Regardless of what department they have joined, it’s essential that new recruits feel well-supported and receive a consistently high standard of training, whether it’s making sure the trainer is imparting the right knowledge at the right time, or making sure the Training Manager has enough time in his or her schedule to handle their additional responsibilities. In the early days, employees may leave if the support provided is inadequate.

Employee Expectations

Employee expectations have been impacted by the pandemic and online trends surrounding ‘quiet quitting’ and ‘QuitTok’. Employees in Generation Z won’t accept a workplace culture that ignores their own ideals and priorities. Recruiters in this demographic need to be aware of this culture shift and provide new recruits with a transparent view of workplace values and behaviours while also explaining the steps they are taking to nurture rising talent.

It’s critical to understand what new recruits are looking for, and contrary to what some employers might think, this isn’t just about offering well-being benefits and improving work-life balance.

A company’s corporate social responsibility and diversity, equity, and inclusion policies have become major considerations when recruiting new employees, and the company’s environmental, social, and governance (ESG) plans and targets are closely scrutinised as well. A candidate may decline a job opportunity if the company’s culture and ethos do not suit them.

It is important that employers and human resources departments make sure that their ESG credentials and opportunities to support environmental and social initiatives are well communicated throughout the recruitment and induction process.

In a time of cost-of-living crisis and flexible working models, starting a new job is always a life-changing experience. In order to feel part of a company, employees need to feel that they are part of a philosophy, a sense of purpose, and a shared set of values. In order to shape employee benefits packages and social events programmes, employers must listen to their employees.

A company’s workplace culture and practices must be attractive and fit for the future when trying to attract and retain talent. You must win over new recruits in the first 100 days if you want the organisation to succeed for years to come.


Author Amie

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