How a Well-Designed Compensation Plan Can Attract the Best Talent

Attracting top-quality talent is about more than wages. Highly qualified employees are a great benefit to your company—and they know it. Unlike run-of-the-mill candidates, top-shelf applicants usually have several offers to choose from. Getting that talent into your workforce can become nothing more than a bidding war–if you allow it. Another, better way to attract the best talent is by offering a well-designed benefits package. You can provide the best candidates with benefits that are highly valuable to them, but less expensive to you than salary increases.

Who Gets What?

Figuring out what to offer applicants can be challenging. A cookie-cutter package for all of your employees won’t save you money, and it doesn’t do much to reward or motivate the top-shelf talent you’re seeking. What you need is an individual package, tailored to the candidate, the role they’ll be filling, and your expectations of their performance. There are numerous factors to consider when designing a package for top talent, and doing it on your own can be confusing.

What you need is a ton of market research. You need to know what other employees of the same caliber are getting for similar positions. You need to know how much other companies are willing to invest to outbid you for the best candidates. And you need to know what currently defines the best candidates in a particular market. Now, you can spend hours, or even days, doing online research, conducting surveys, and doing mock interviews to get the information you need. Or, you can choose an easier path.

Recruitment agencies are constantly conducting this type of market research. Every time they place an employee, they know what that employee’s skills are, and they know exactly what those skills were worth. They do this thousands of times a year, with employees from nearly every industry. When it comes to up-to-date information on compensation packages, they are the foremost authorities.

What to Offer?

Compensation packages have changed a lot in the last decade. Pay, benefits, and vacation have become such standard fare that they’re hardly even considered part of a “package.” Top candidates expect more personalized and original benefits.

Getting to know the candidate can have a great impact on the benefits you choose to offer them. A new parent may be swayed by free or subsidized daycare. Fitness-conscious applicants could choose your company for its onsite gym or a membership to a local gym. If you want your benefits package to reflect certain corporate values, you could offer paid volunteer days or membership in a civic organization. There are numerous options that would let the applicant know that you’ve taken a personal interest in them. But, how do you find out what their personal needs are before they arrive for an interview?

Again, this is where a professional recruitment agency is invaluable. They have researched, vetted, and interviewed the candidates in advance. They know them personally, and can help you tailor a winning benefits package for your most prized applicants.

Sealing the Deal

Getting the best talent into your company is worth some extra effort. However, like everything in business, there is a cost/benefit relationship. Most candidates will have more than one offer to choose from, so you’ll need to invest the extra effort in more than one top candidate. Over time, and with numerous positions, the costs will quickly outweigh the benefits. That’s why it makes so much sense to shift the bulk of the recruiting effort to a recruitment agency. They know how find the top candidates, how to win them over to your company, and how to do it on-budget.

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