As a recruitment consultant at Datum Recruitment Services, focussed on building careers in Africa, one of the most common complaints by our clients relates to their inability to attract the right candidates and fill their job openings in Africa.
Unfortunately, many companies have not realised that there is a severe skills shortage globally, especially in senior and executive level positions. Many companies believe that if they advertise any vacancy, candidates will come rushing in to apply for these jobs.
Today, the candidate is in the driving seat. Any good candidate will have his or her pick of opportunities and will be constantly approached by recruiters and head-hunters offering jobs in Africa.
So, what can companies do to improve their marketability and recruit the talent they need to grow the business?
Firstly, companies need to market themselves appropriately. Websites need to be well designed and up to date. Companies should provide recruiters with their marketing materials such as brochures, so that candidates can understand the company better. One of the most common comments we receive from prospective candidates relates to the lack of a good website by the companies they are applying to.
Secondly, companies need to ensure that their HR policies are attractive for future employees. They need to have a well-managed HR function in place with well laid out career paths for their employees. These policies and career paths also need to be marketed to the prospective employees to attract them to the organisation.
Finally, companies need to realise that in order to attract professional talent, the companies must themselves be run professionally. Good candidates will want to be empowered and want professional freedom. Unless the company’s top management allows this, candidates will not be willing to work in this organisation.
What are your thoughts on this matter – what else can companies in Africa do to attract top talent?