SmartCompany recently posted an article by Broede Carmody on ‘The 20 hardest jobs to fill in Australia‘. While Fitness roles didn’t rate a mention, there were a number of points raised that are particularly relevant to our industry.
The results include gems like “despite rising unemployment, one in four jobs remained unfilled after a month” and that “10% of job vacancies in Australia are unfilled after three months.”
While I don’t believe things are as bad in our industry, I’m sure there are fitness employers that can relate to the challenge of finding the right staff member for an available role.
Job advertising, by it’s very nature, can’t possibly deliver the person you want every time. After all, it relies heavily on the ideal candidate looking for work at the very time your ad is listed. It also relies heavily on their being no other job on offer at the same time that might also be of interest to the candidate.
A better solution is to have your ear to the ground for great people on an ongoing basis.
This affords you the luxury of time. If you have a good candidate, you can sound them out without pressure. If you happen across the perfect candidate, you can find a space for them – while keeping an eye on the probationary period.
It’s also worth considering a more flexible approach to hiring if you’re struggling to find the right person. For example, if someone has the majority of necessary skills and the right attitude then it is probably worth hiring them and training them up rather than drain further resources for a few months looking for another candidate; ‘Hire for attitude and train for skill’.
Employers have to be prepared to teach people on the job so they can develop. As much as remuneration, ongoing training is something that a majority of people hold in high regard.
The article quotes HR Director Margaret Harrison, whose approach is “if you get the right person with the right attitude, help them because they’re the ones you want to keep.”
Employers in the fitness industry are rarely recruiting on a scale that requires (or can afford) ‘full service’ or ‘partial service’ recruitment. And in any case, with the range of tools and services (*ahem* HealthyPeople *ahem*) available, employers are better equipped to embrace an ongoing recruitment model than ever before.