Secrets to attracting candidates to regional areas

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Working with so many dealerships located in regional areas in Australia, we are acutely aware of the difficulties in attracting great talent to non-metro areas.

Research commissioned by SEEK, discovered just under 40% of candidates would consider relocating to a regional area for work. Reasons for doing so included a change of pace, more affordable living and job security. Whereas those against indicated wanting to be in or near a major city and not wanting to uproot their family as reasons for not relocating.

Almost half said an increase in salary would make them consider relocating, while 27% said they’d consider such a move if they were very passionate about the role or the business. Just over half of the respondents indicated a move to a regional area would limit their career options.

So how do regional businesses attract talent?

Simon Dowling, author of Work With Me, says regional businesses should focus on three great influencers of candidate attraction. He defines them as ‘mood’, ‘mind’ and ‘movement’.

MOOD: “This is when someone looks at your idea or proposal, whether it’s a job advertisement or a meeting at a careers fair, etc, and reacts,” Dowling says. “How do they feel about the opportunity? What emotional response do you and your brand evoke in a candidate? Are they interested enough to want to talk further?”

MIND: “This is the logical side of the argument. Why would they take such a job? What’s in it for them? Is it a smart thing to do?”

MOVEMENT: “This is when they are inclined to say yes, but there’s something that makes it difficult for them to take action, such as a long drive to a job interview. It is about helping convert enthusiasm into action.”

attractingregionalareas | Teamrecruit

All of these obstacles can be overcome, Dowling says, by being more flexible in the recruitment process. For example, in order to influence ‘mood’, you should consider who would best be suited to be the face of the business. Pick someone who best represents your business and can ‘sell’ the opportunity.

Avoiding the ‘mind’ obstacle comes down to knowing what to discuss in terms of practical implications – income, other types of payoffs (affordable real estate, etc), lifestyle, family benefits, etc.

To get beyond any ‘movement’ objections, it might be wise to consider alternative interview processes such as Skype or online video interviews. Or they might offer a few nights’ accommodation for strong candidates and their families, in order to conduct relevant interviews and introduce them to the area.

Most important, Dowling says, is consistency of messaging across multiple channels. Whether a candidate is hearing about a position through online advertising, social media, word of mouth or via a recruiter, the messaging must be consistent and strong.

We have placed many candidates in regional areas of Australia. We focus a lot of our process on ensuring candidates understand the benefits and obstacles in each location we recruit so they have a long lasting tenure with our clients.

[Source: SEEK]

Teamrecruit is Australia’s most established recruitment agency specialising in truck, earthmoving and agricultural machinery dealerships in Australia, New Zealand, the South Pacific and Southeast Asia. Find out more about Teamrecruit and how we support employers and candidates in the dealership industry.

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