With unemployment at the lowest it has been in 50 years, finding qualified employees is getting more challenging. Companies must become more proactive to win in the war for talented hires. It is crucial to be more proactive not only to attract great people but to hire and retain them too! 

Just as companies invest in research and training, it is important to include line items to cover the all-important talent acquisition items. Below are tips to be considered when building your budget. 

First of all, according to SHRM the average cost to hire a non-skilled employee today is $4125. That does not include costs of onboarding or training. To hire a more highly productive employee, such as a top billing seller, could cost up to 5 times their compensation. 

The more you can do in advance to establish yourself as a ‘good employer’ will help lower your costs. In fact, studies show that companies are known to be a great employer often can pay less in compensation plans. 

  • Ads/Job Postings – whether it be a job board, an ad on Craig’s list,  or industry trades, you need a budget to promote the jobs
  • Marketing Materials/Brochure/Website Update – the cost for someone to create, update, maintain and produce, one of the most important investments as prospective employees are doing more research and you need to be prepared to sell your opportunities
  • Registration for Career Fairs – the cost of attendance, materials, travel, manpower, giveaways, etc. 
  • Referral Program – should include cost for leads and then for actual hires. Most people will need an amount to excite them, in media we are seeing anything from $500 to $2500 per referral who gets hired
  • Recruiters/Consultants – someone to help guide you in the process, build your pipeline, source or conduct the search, usually a % of the 1st years expected income
  • Travel  – both to attend networking events, conferences and for the potential employee and family for a market visit
  • Bounties/Signing Bonus – more common lately in media, very common in many industries
  • Relocation – the cost of moving, plus expenses while working away from home = housing, per diem on food, # of trips back to family, etc.
  • Training – 
    • Costs to train new hires
    •  Management training for your hiring team on how to recruit with this competitive environment
  • Internship Programs – many states require them to be paid, figure minimum wage in the very least
    • Cultural Improvements:
      • Awards, recognition
      • Tuition reimbursement for skill improvement
      • Updated tools to do the job more effectively
      • Fun stuff, perks, etc. 

Be realistic. Project your turnover and expect it will be more often with the younger generations expected to have shorter tenures than in the past. Don’t lose in the war for talent, invest today to win tomorrow.