After losing an estimated 1.4 million jobs at the beginning of the pandemic, the manufacturing industry is struggling to hire back entry-level and skilled workers alike. Additionally, almost 25% of the manufacturing workforce is 55 or older. As these Baby Boomers retire – taking their experience with them – there aren’t enough people entering the trades to fill their positions.
Given the skilled labor shortage, finding skilled workers has become as difficult as threading a camel through the eye of a needle. So, how do employers find employees in the trades?
In this blog, we list five strategies for finding skilled workers that will help trade employers like you who are wondering how to find workers for my business:
- Partner with schools
- Add a careers page to your website
- Ask for referrals
- Use online job boards
- Contact a skilled labor staffing agency
How to Find Workers for My Business
1. Partner with schools
The majority of young people have never connected directly with someone in a skilled trade about career opportunities in their field. As a result, only 16% of young people have ever considered a skilled trade career. If you want to attract the next generation to work in the trades, go to schools for career day and talk to them.
Young people receive career counseling from school, but they’re often encouraged to “work smarter, not harder.” Students and their parents simply don’t know enough about the numerous and varied opportunities available in skilled trades, so they write it off completely. Even if you don’t walk away with a list of qualified applicants, you have given graduating seniors a new vocation to consider post-graduation.
2. Add a careers page to your website
Adding a careers page to your website allows you to share more information about your company than you can on social media or job boards, such as your story, mission, and values. With the right digital marketing strategy, your careers page can show up on the first page of search engines where job seekers are looking to find skilled labor jobs.
On your careers page, list job openings and have an application for people to fill out and submit online. As you review applications, don’t just look at past job experience; ask yourself if candidates will be a good fit for your company culture. Keep that advice in mind as you interview and vet candidates because an eager, teachable hire is better than an inflexible, experienced one.
3. Ask for referrals
Ask your existing employees if they know anyone who would be interested at your company. Word-of-mouth referrals can be one of the most effective ways to begin finding skilled workers. If your company has a social media account, encourage employees to share a post that promotes the job to widen your reach.
You may even consider incentivizing your employees by offering them a kickback for referring a new hire. Incentive ideas include cash, paid trips, donations, gift cards, etc. Hiring employees via referrals is 55% faster than through career websites, so implementing a referral program can be a great way to streamline your recruitment process.
4. Use online job boards
Career websites such as LinkedIn, Indeed, and Monster are another way to attract more applicants for open positions. You can post job ads, search for candidates who match your criteria, and even reach out directly to people who catch your eye.
However, the downside is that these job boards are open to everyone and anyone. So, it’s likely that people who are completely unqualified for the trades job you’re looking to fill will apply. To find the most qualified candidates with the right set of skills, you need to partner with a staffing agency specializing in the trades.
5. Contact a skilled labor staffing agency
The previous four strategies for how to find the right employee for your business are labor and time intensive. The best strategy is to work with a team of experienced recruiters who understand your industry and have an extensive network of skilled candidates to choose from.
As America’s premier skilled labor recruitment agency, Skillwork exclusively connects employers with outstanding tradesmen across the U.S.—we know where to find skilled laborers when you need them. Using an 8-step vetting process, we ensure that every worker we send your way is a good fit for the job.
Want to finally stop asking yourself, “How do I find people for my business?”