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Apploi recently hosted a webinar to focus on how brands can prepare for an uncertain future, especially when it comes to hiring. The discussion, in partnership with American Dream and Mall of America, featured Apploi CEO Adam Lewis, American Dream Co-CEO Mark Ghermezian, and WPP CEO of The Store WPP, EMEA, and Asia, David Roth. The following article captures part of their conversation about how brands, in a super competitive hiring market, can make it as easy as possible for job seekers.

Retail companies and brands are confronting an ongoing sea change in their business as a result of the pandemic. Hiring well, and fast, matters more than ever. As some parts of the country reopen and employers post new jobs and rehire past employees, they are coming to terms with everything that has changed since February.

Job seekers have new expectations

“Coming through this pandemic, wellness is the key concern,” says Apploi CEO Adam Lewis. “This is not just a nice to have anymore, it’s a must. To be able to very easily verbalize that in an obvious way is critical for a candidate or a job seeker to actually be able to say they want to come and work at that brand.”

After wellness, job seekers have a few other key expectations that Lewis identified during the webinar conversation:

  • They want more from a job than just money: healthcare benefits, education and training, and additional perks
  • They expect easy and quick access to job boards and open positions, including constantly updated communication from the hiring company
  • They are looking for flexible shifts
  • They want hiring managers to focus on career progression

Lewis adds: “I think a job seeker is probably the most vulnerable and needs transparency and structure more than ever, and that transparency will go a very, very long way.”

Here’s some additional essential reading on the subject of hiring:

  • Human Resource Executive: 5 tips to help recruiters survive the coronavirus crisis
  • Inc.: How to get your staff off unemployment and back to work
  • HR Technologist: 15 tips to hire talent during and after the coronavirus pandemic

What companies can do to streamline hiring and recruiting

As companies focus resources on hiring and recruiting for the rest of 2020, especially in the retail sector, embracing new technological tools will be at the top of their to-do list. “To do a lot of this stuff well, technology is going to need to be adopted,” says Lewis. “We’ve probably fast-forwarded adoption of technology by ten years, just in the last 2 months.”

There are a few ways you can update your hiring processes to help in this environment.

  • Focus on your career sites, job titles, and job descriptions
  • Remove any frictions in the application process: make everything as simple and easy as possible
  • Embrace mobile in every way
  • Use modern communication forms like texting and video
  • Digitize all your documentation and onboarding forms: they can speed up the “time to hire” by over 80%

As Lewis concludes in the webinar: “As you’re starting to think about reopening and rehiring, putting in some of these strategies now, everything from the messaging to the workflow, is really going to be absolutely critical.”

Watch the whole Apploi webinar on hiring and preparing your brand for the future. And here are some more expert links related to the big changes impacting the retail industry right now: