Top 10 Recruitment Tips

Top 10 Recruitment Tips

One of my clients is getting ready to open a brand-new convenience store. It’s such an exciting time, but he contacted me concerned that he was going to be unable to staff the store ahead of his impending opening date. I am looking after his key roles, but he asked me for some advice to help him through his upcoming staff recruitment drive.

It prompted me to put together a list for this months article of my top ten tips when recruiting staff for a retail job. Obviously, this list varies slightly with each role, but below are some nice guidelines which some may find useful.

Advertising – when you are writing a job advertisement , whether it’s for a shop front window or an online job board you should quantify the role clearly. Make sure to state the tasks, hours, location, salary and contact details and how to apply. It may seem simple but with over 1500 retail jobs on just one of the job boards as of today, it’s worth ensuring yours has the information potential candidates look for! You should seek to include details which will matter most to prospective employees such as pay and shift pattern, rather than use this space to over elaborate on what the role entails and what you are looking for.

Sell the job – ensure your advert is going to attract candidates to apply – rather than dissuade them from doing so. Oftentimes, retailers compose a job advert which is similar to a wish list of their perfect candidate. Listing endless skills and experience they must have in order to apply. This can lead to few or no relevant applications. Write the advert with the potential candidate in mind – think “WE OFFER” rather than “YOU MUST HAVE!”

Advertise in your locality – Local noticeboards, public spaces, libraries, and community colleges are all great sources of local talent and have the added bonus of hitting the exact demographic you are looking for. With “shorter commute times” one of the top reasons for making a move cited by jobseekers, it is well worth advertising locally to appeal to local hidden talent!

Look at your online job boards paid and unpaid options – these can be worthwhile to attract a decent volume of candidates, but remember they are only as good as the job advertisement you write. Make the role something YOU would like to apply to! When writing a job advert to go online ensure you are using phrases which a job seeker is likely to type into a search bar. “Sales Assistant” will always attract more applicants than “Sales Executive” and “Deli Assistant” will appear in far more searches than “Fresh Food Counter Hand.” If your store is part of a retail brand it is also worth reaching out to see if they can post the advert on their website directly for a wider reach.

Social media – This can be a really useful tool – use your company’s Facebook account and share your job (with a picture) with dedicated groups – such as job fairy boards – but remember to keep an eye on your comment section as well as inbox for responses.

Referrals – Past employees, current employees and customers can be great advocates for your business and you as an employer! Get networking!

Use an agency – (ahem, shameless plug here) Recruitment agencies are professional recruiters – At Excel we have a database of over 85,000 retail candidates and a team of specialist recruiters who understand the industry. This can be a particularly useful option when you are looking for management or specialist candidates as it can be challenging to find the right expertise on your own.

Move with urgency – in this current market you need to respond quickly to candidates who meet your criteria. It goes without saying – still go through your screening and vetting process – but it’s recommended doing them slightly quicker than before!

Job offers – when you are offering the job to your preferred candidate – offer the full package – list every available benefit and include them in your job offer letter. From free parking to free coffees, pensions and holidays – get it all down so that you can relay it to your chosen candidate and get them excited to join your business!

Retain your talent – following a survey of our database we have listed the top reasons candidates choose to remain with their current employer – the more of these you can offer to your team – the less likely they are to leave your business!

→ Career opportunities

→ A voice in the workplace

→ Progression

→ Flexibility

→ Fair pay

→ Fun perks

→ Work life balance

→ Additional Annual leave days

→ Inclusive Culture

Happy recruiting and good luck! For more information call us on 01 814 8747 or email

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