Singapore's maritime sector has long been a cornerstone of the nation's economy and a global hub for maritime activities. However, in an era of rapidly advancing technology and evolving sector demands, the need for a skilled and adaptable maritime workforce has never been more crucial.
To stay at the forefront of the global maritime arena, businesses in Singapore must continually replenish and expand their pool of maritime talent. We will explore five effective strategies that businesses and organisations can employ to attract top maritime talent within the Lion City.
From reward packages to great candidate experiences, we will share what will help you stand out as an employer in the crowded Singapore maritime jobs market.
1. Attractive reward packages
We have reached a point in recruitment in Singapore where the cost of getting a reward package wrong could lead to the failure to secure the talent you want. Even a slight disparity to other job opportunities can deter potential employees from applying.
Leading with a full reward package is now the savvy move. This means that candidates are not just considering a salary on its own but seeing a more holistic package of the layered offering you have as a business. A salary is simply not enough anymore for candidates in demand.
Including elements, where applicable, such as performance-related pay, annual leave entitlement, healthcare provision, annual wage supplement, travel allowance, pension, life insurance, working styles, personal development funds, office perks, etc. can all be beneficial.
Candidates will be looking for similar and better packages than they already have. Not including your full suite of benefits could make candidates assume it is not offered and not consider applying for your job opportunity.
2. Storytelling in candidate attraction
Using storytelling in your candidate attraction strategies helps you to create a strong and authentic brand, establish a deeper connection with potential hires, and stand out in a crowded job market. It goes way beyond listing job descriptions and qualifications, to creating a narrative that resonates with candidates, making them more likely to choose and commit to a recruitment process with you.
It is also worth noting that research shows that stories increase the recall of businesses and brands. Using storytelling in a series of ‘micro-moments’ in your advertising could help you stay in the mind of a job seeker for longer, and if they are bought into your stories, create a more positive association. Storytelling can also make your business feel more humanised.
Building out your stories and using them in attraction strategies does take some time and effort. You will need to:
Understand your target audience – Who do you want to attract? What motivates them in their job search? What really matters to them?
Identify your key messages – Decide what they are but make sure they reflect your business’s culture, missions, and values. Give people a real flavour of what it is like to work for you.
Use multiple formats and micro-moments – Stories can be told in so many ways. From short and long content, infographics, videos, podcasts, social media posts, and programmatic advertising. A one-off of your story may not be enough, but creating it in multiple forms so potential candidates in multiple micro-moments could help cement your message.
Measure and adapt – Like anything you do as a business, you will want to monitor the performance of your storytelling efforts. Use data to adapt and refine your storytelling over time. But don’t forget to ask people too, what did they like most? What made them apply? This will quickly help you understand what parts of your story resonate and connect with people.
3. Long-term career development opportunity
On top of attractive reward packages and creating great business stories, you will also want to consider how you promote career development in your attraction strategies.
For many individuals, a job represents more than just a means to earn a living. They seek employment that transcends the routine, providing not only a livelihood but also a platform for a fulfilling career. In this pursuit, they desire opportunities for growth and self-development, a chance to harness their full potential, and the assurance that their professional journey will be as rewarding as it is productive.
Mark Charman, CEO and Founder of Faststream Recruitment has recently been talking a lot about micro-markers and micro-recognition. Micro-markers, not to be confused with full promotions, give people the opportunity for incremental growth in their roles. This can be encompassed in progressive paths through learning opportunities, mentoring, training, new challenges, attending events, gaining more responsibility, and managing projects.
If you offer equivalents to these micro-markers in your opportunities talk to candidates about this, it might just be the differentiator in a job they have been looking for.
In the modern workplace, the concept of micro-recognition is gaining prominence, emphasising the importance of ongoing feedback and expressions of gratitude. Employees, more than ever, seek assurance that their dedicated efforts are acknowledged and valued. The absence of timely recognition can lead to feelings of disillusionment and underappreciation. In an age characterised by instant gratification in our online interactions, where likes, comments, and shares validate our efforts, these expectations are extending to the workplace. Acknowledging and embracing this shift in expectations is essential to fostering a motivated and engaged workforce.
If your business is committed to recognising its employees for their efforts, talk to potential candidates about this. This could be a huge shift in culture for them and be an attractive element of your opportunity.
4. Recruitment timelines
Creating and using your storytelling, in combination with an attractive reward package and career development opportunities means you should now be at a stage where you have interested candidates in your opportunities. This is where timeliness becomes key.
In today’s competitive marketplace, people are in high demand. A slow or protracted recruitment process could lead to the loss of a top candidate to a competitor who was able to move quicker than you. Timeliness could give you a real advantage in securing top talent over laggards.
For candidates when recruitment processes are slow or lengthy, they can feel frustrated, demoralised, and in some cases despondent about the opportunity. This can lead to an overall feeling of negativity in the candidate experience and harm your reputation, counteracting all the good work you have done in your storytelling. Timely communication and decision-making ultimately portray respect for the candidate and enhance their experience, regardless of the outcome.
A final point to make on timeliness is the business impact it can have. If you are in a situation where the role is vacant, every delay in the recruitment process is going to slow down the time to fill that role and get the business back to full operational or strategic capacity. If you factor in notice periods and counteroffers on top of a lengthy recruitment process, you can see how roles stay open for extended periods, sometimes having detrimental impacts on the business.
5. Recruitment communications and processes
Linked very closely to recruitment timeliness is the use of communications. Not only is this important in the initial attraction stages but throughout the recruitment process, right up to the day the employee starts. Read more about how to keep your new employee engaged from job offer to start date here.
Especially if you have done a brilliant job at storytelling in attracting candidates, you don’t want your communication (or lack of) to spoil your efforts.
Providing great communication can help to cultivate engagement and build relationships with people. Great communication makes people feel informed and engaged and even if they aren’t selected, can lead them on to recommending your business to others or even reapplying in the future.
Giving feedback can be tough from your side, we all want to be the ones to tell people they got the job, or they did a great job at the interview. Unfortunately, we sometimes must be the ones to say no or deliver the bad news. Remember, yes, it is tough for you, but a candidate will appreciate you telling them much more than they will than never hearing from you again.
Create experiences with communications that inspire people to say good things about your business and who may very well consider trying to work for you in the future.
By implementing these strategies, you can not only attract top talent but also foster a thriving, dynamic, and motivated workforce to navigate the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
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