Historically, employers have been somewhat sceptical about making job offers to candidates from further afield. As our previous blog post explained, employers face significant risks when hiring a candidate from out of town. But what if offering a relocation package was the key to filling your skills gap? We explore this common dilemma.
The reasons behind this nervousness are entirely understandable. External circumstances such as the candidates family, life-style and financial security can all negatively impact the candidate’s willingness to move. It is easy to understand employers’ reluctance to hire relocators with so many factors being out of their control.
In addition, candidates may require local knowledge for the role which can take a while to garner. Or, most likely, employers are nervous that the candidate will drop out due to the stresses of moving.
Out Of Towners Can Bring Benefits
However, there are many benefits to employers willing to cast their net a little wider. Particularly if you are struggling to find the skills you need in the local area.
Of course, employers would be right to question why someone might be willing to make a big move for a job if they have no real reason to do so. More often than not, candidates have a legitimate motivation for conducting their job search in a different part of the country.
Attitudes Towards the Relocation Package are Changing
In 2019, The Edge Foundation in 2019 studied skills shortages across UK industries. The report found that two-thirds (68%) of UK employers have struggled to find workers with the skills they need. This skills shortage is adversely affecting agility, productivity and efficiency in the UK workforce.
Unfortunately, this report is no longer accessible but here is a more up to date report published by the Edge Foundation on skills shortages in 2021.
Notably, it seems that hiring specialist Digital and Technology candidates has become more problematic than in previous years. The report concluded that 34% of businesses experienced issues in hiring, an increase of 28% from 2018.
In an attempt to fill their skills gaps, many businesses have increased spending on recruitment fees, salaries and relocation packages. Whilst businesses want to keep hiring costs to a minimum, discarding applications from out of towners could delay business growth progress.
Benefits of Opening up Your Vacancy To Relocators
Casting your net a little wider can help you find the necessary skills your company may be lacking. Besides, hiring a relocator can benefit your business in a variety of unsuspected ways.
- Outsiders may bring with them valuable network connections from the city or previous places of work
- It presents an opportunity to diversify your workforce
- You are more likely to find the required skills/experience by widening your search area
- A person’s life experience gained from living in another city may bring unique energy or perspective to your business
- Improve your business outlook by inviting applications from people from different backgrounds. They can often offer a difference of opinion or a new approach to problem-solving
Why Add Further Complications to an Already Complex Scenario?
The recruitment process is costly and stressful enough as it is for employers. Even when hiring someone local, complications can arise, which result in a candidate rescinding their acceptance of an offer. It is understandable, therefore that employers might be reluctant to sign a deal which may bring added complications.
Offering a relocation package can make candidates feel more comfortable about moving for a job. The aim is to provide more than just financial assistance to your new employee. Just knowing that an employer values them enough to assist will be of great comfort at stressful times.
When considering opening your job vacancy to applicants living further afield, your advert should mention relocation assistance.
What Does a Typical Relocation Package Include?
Well, there isn’t a one size fits all solution as every scenario is different. However, a job relocation package usually covers the costs a candidate might incur in moving from one place to another. Consequently, employers should be flexible to accommodate the candidate’s individual needs.
Take real estate for example. Someone moving their family from ‘selling to buying’ will have very different needs to one moving from ‘rental to rental’. Either way, offering to cover moving expenses or temporary living expenses for a short period of time can take a massive amount of financial pressure away from a candidate.
Clarity is Key to Avoiding Nasty Surprises
When negotiating a relocation package with a candidate, it’s important that any offer made is based on realistic quotes. It should also be made clear from the outset whether the business agrees to pay a lump sum upfront, or if they are to submit individual invoices to the accounts payable department. Establishing firm details from the start can avoid awkward situations further down the line, for the business or the candidate.
Besides relocation costs, there are many non-monetary incentives an employer can provide to make their offer much more attractive to employees relocating. For instance:
- Offering help to find a reputable moving company to handle the logistics for them
- Ask if anyone within the business has a spare room to provide temporary housing for your new employee for a short period of time
- Grant additional leave, for example, to sign paperwork when their house sale completes
- Option for flexible working until the candidate fully settles in. For example; giving them the freedom to work from home while having the cooker installed
- Having a ‘buddy’ in the office who shares common interests with your new staff member. For example; if they support the same football team
- Organise a series of social events to introduce new employees to each other and also, the local area. For example; Friday beers or a team day out
How a Recruitment Consultant Can Assist Employers With Relocating Candidates
Relocation expenses aside, the thought of any additional admin involved often puts employers off hiring candidates where a move is required.
If this is a worry, it could prove cost-effective for a recruiter to manage the entire hiring process for you. A consultant can take the pressure off by handling extra telephone calls, allowing you to focus your time in the office.
Working with a recruiter is definitely worth thinking about if you’re considering opening up to relocators. Recruiters have access to large talent pools, covering vast areas and can also tap into the active market. Their market knowledge quickly enables consultants to identify suitable candidates and recommend the best talent available for your business.
Furthermore, recruitment professionals regularly deal with the added trials and tribulations that come with any job move. For example…
Being Careful of the Counteroffer
From our own experience, we estimate that 75% of tech employers make counteroffers. Counteroffers can put a tremendous amount of stress on any candidate, who still has to work their notice.
Recruiters encounter these kinds of issues all time, regardless of whether a candidate is relocating. Because a recruitment consultant is familiar with such circumstances, they can easily coach your candidate through the process.
Of course, counteroffers are just one example of a situation which can hinder progress unexpectedly! There are many other ways in which recruitment consultants can take the pressure off both clients and candidates. It is their job to act as a mediator and problem solver between the two. Naturally, where relocation is involved, a recruiters experience can prove invaluable! But to us, it’s all just part of the service.
Is there a role you are struggling to fill with talent from your local area? Are you considering hiring a relocator? By all means, we would be happy to discuss your situation and how we might be able to help.