How to Hire and Retain the Best Team Members by Improving Your Recruitment Strategy

The objective of a company’s hiring process is not to fill job openings with warm bodies. It doesn’t matter if you are a small, medium, or large organization, or you are the Director of Human Resources, Head of Recruitment, or a department leader creating a recruitment strategy. Nor does it matter if you are hiring seasoned people bringing a certain level of expertise or hiring less qualified candidates you will have to train. Regardless of all these things, your number one job is to find a candidate who not only fits your culture but will enhance it for all concerned, including your current teams. You want to hire and retain the best team members for the role.  This starts with creating a world-class recruitment experience, not just a recruitment strategy.

Unnamed 56, The DiJulius GroupA great leader and a great organization understand that just as much as the potential employee needs to be the right fit for their company and team, the company needs to be the right fit for the potential employee. If not, it is highly likely that within the next six months, both the company and the person who was hired will be back at the drawing board, with both parties looking for a new situation.

“Great companies are great precisely because they stand for something special, different, distinctive. That means, almost by definition, that they are not for everybody.”

–Jeff Bezos

Is Your Company’s Hiring Process Pulling in the Right Talent?

Many companies lacking effective recruitment strategies hire poorly because they are casting their lines into the wrong ponds and getting wrong-fit applicants. It starts with branding your company as the employer of choice to prospective right-fit talent, one with a company culture that appeals to both those actively seeking a new job and passive candidates who learn about your organization via such channels as professional associations, job fairs, conferences and other events within your industry, niche job boards, career websites, and employee referrals.

A great recruiting process saves a company from costly mistakes such as wasted time, culture setbacks, weakened employee morale, under or over-training, employee turnover, and a negative impact on the customer experience.

Evolving Your Brand Experience at Every Level

Everything a brand does, internally and externally, must be an experience. Your organization needs to focus on being BX Strong (Brand eXperience Strong), which is an entire experience ecosystem. The companies that will dominate their industries for the next decade will be the ones who are obsessed with evolving the experience at every level, for their employee, customer, vendor, and community.

I am not just talking about having a good or even great interview process that helps you better select the seemingly superior applicants. The problem with that is, who’s to say the people who are applying are truly rockstars? And if they are rockstars, who’s to say that they will accept your job offer? They have plenty of choices.

Prior to the great resignation and labor shortage, if a person wanted a new job with a new company, a significant percentage of them would apply and interview with one company, then wait hopefully to hear if they got the job. Not today. People realize it is an employee market. The brand experience now includes the brand’s own recruitment process! As a result, prospective employees are interviewing at numerous companies, looking for the “best offer”. And they are expecting something that goes far beyond a basically positive candidate experience during the interview stage.

For Today’s Potential Hires, Career Goals Aren’t Just About the Money

Now, the best offer doesn’t always mean the highest compensation. It can mean a lot of different things; typically, it is a combination of factors, from pay, opportunity for advancement, flexibility, workplace culture, hard and soft benefits, professional development, autonomy, mission, core values, and the meaning and purpose of the job they will be doing, to the type of leaders who will impact a person’s development, personally and professionally. To make informed decisions, today’s quality candidates need to know that employee satisfaction is considered an integral feature of their potential career path within your organization.

While it’s true that employers have more than ever to consider for their recruitment processes, covering all these bases will help ensure both the highest quality of hire and subsequent employee retention rate. It is essential to your business strategy–no matter what your industry–to have a comprehensive recruitment plan.

Don’t Show the Candidate What They Want, Show Them What They Can’t Live Without

Now the challenge is, how can you articulate those things in a recruitment experience? A person may think they know what is important to them, from their past employment experiences, where they were basically trading hours for dollars. They’ve possibly even had a poor candidate experience or two.

What you want to consistently have to happen is: a candidate interviews with your company, then goes on interviews with different organizations, and those other businesses pale in comparison to your recruitment experience. The candidate actually becomes worried that they might not be selected by your company. That is what a world-class recruitment experience does for your brand.

A Recruitment Experience Starts Long Before the First Interview

The branding of your culture needs to be so strong and defined in every way a candidate can be exposed to. From what they see on your website, to your social media presence (which may include a social recruiting strategy), what existing and past employees have to say about the experience for candidates via Glassdoor and other online employment reviews, customer reviews, to the interview process.

Everything they see and hear should make it overwhelmingly obvious what your brand stands for. It needs to be so definitive that one of two things happens: they are either turned on or turned off. And their being turned off is a great thing for both the company and the candidate. Neither of you needs to find out in three months that it wasn’t a good match.

The number one way to increase a talent pipeline and ideal candidates’ interest in working for your company is by educating them on how hard it is to get hired here. The top employee experience brands articulate that they are not for everyone, nor do they want to be. They are for the two percent who want to emerge as the best of the best, who are not afraid to work hard and challenge themselves to see how much greatness they have inside. Not only will suitable candidates appreciate knowing that, but it will also tell them that if they get hired, your screening process will protect their workplace culture, ensuring a “jerk-free” environment.

Don’t Offer a Job, Offer a Career 

From their encounter with your brand as an employee candidate, to their first day of new employee orientation and throughout their career with your company, make every employee aware of the career development opportunities that can result from their hard work and rockstar performance in helping the organization grow. Share examples of your own rags-to-riches stories of people who started off at entry-level or lower-level positions, many of whom thought it was going to be a temporary transitional job. However, they rose through the ranks, and their efforts and loyalty have been rewarded. Today they are some of the top leaders in your company, who have had the biggest impact, not only on the organization’s success but on the team members’ lives.

Share Your Vision and Tie It to Your Employees’ Jobs

One of the silver linings of the great resignation was that it taught leaders that human beings need meaning and purpose in their jobs. It shouldn’t be a shock that so many people decided they didn’t want to continue with employee experiences that weren’t engaging or inspiring them. Most people don’t just want competitive wages and health insurance, they want to be part of something bigger. 

Your recruitment efforts have to assure them that at your company, they will be.

Narrowing Down Your Talent Pool

Unnamed 38, The DiJulius GroupIf you go to the career page on most company websites, they all tend to be saying the same generic things. Every company has a mission/purpose and service vision statement. Every company has core values. No one reads those and says, “They value respect, so do I, I want to work for them.” People don’t believe what they read; they believe what they experience. One of Enron’s core values was integrity: “We work with customers and prospects openly, honestly, and sincerely. When we say we will do something, we will do it; when we say we cannot or will not do something, then we won’t do it.” Enron’s core values were prominently displayed in Enron’s annual reports, its corporate code of ethics, and other company communications. However, the company’s actual practices and behavior did not always align with these values, as evidenced by the financial scandals that ultimately led to Enron’s collapse in 2001.

The absolute best recruiting and culture companies stand out and articulate their mission, purpose, and values with energy, clarity, and gusto. You clearly know what type of culture they have and whether you would be a fit or not. Take, for example, Atlassian, an Australian tech company. Atlassian does an incredible job showcasing its five core values in a video in a no-nonsense manner:

  1. Open company, no BS
  2. Build with heart and balance
  3. Don’t f*** the customer
  4. Play as a team
  5. Be the change you seek

Atlassian is clearly not trying to appeal to everyone. While using explicit language to communicate their core values will definitely turn some potential candidates away, forewarned is forearmed. By being so upfront in their employer branding, they are defining and likely attracting their ideal pool of candidates. Thirty seconds into the video it is apparent what Atlassian is saying is, “We are not a traditional company. We are different and so are our people. Normal need not apply.”

Atlassian brands itself on enabling their teams to develop remarkable products for their clients, while working in an environment where they feel valued for their skills and able to put ideas and innovations forward. “Culture is something that can’t be manufactured. It’s a combination of characters of all the people who live in the building,” says Mike Cannon-Brookes, co-founder and co-CEO.

*New Customer Experience Executive Academy starting in September ’23

LaQuita Cleare Keynoting the Customer Service Revolution Conference

Unnamed 39 E1687176264532, The DiJulius GroupWe are thrilled to announce that LaQuita Cleare will be keynoting at this year’s Customer Service Revolution. LaQuita is a highly sought-after communication and storytelling expert who believes in the power of communication to create change.

The title of LaQuita’s presentation is Hollywood Secrets to Engage: Connect, Engage, and Sell Through Storytelling.

In this keynote, LaQuita Cleare mixes her background of working in Hollywood with working with companies and business leaders in more than 50 countries, to help you engage your audience. We will discuss the key elements of a compelling story and how to use them to help you build strong connections with your customers and to increase sales. This presentation will provide you with the strategy to understand the power of engagement and the tools you need to increase your presence and tell better stories.

What you’ll learn:

  • A strategy to connect and engage, driving business results
  • Elements of powerful stories
  • Hollywood storytelling structure to help yours be more impactful
  • How to showcase your unique value proposition with stories



“Don’t concentrate on making a lot of money, but rather on becoming

the type of person people want to do business with.”

—Arthur Henry Fripp


Register for the 2023 Customer Service Revolution Conference and save $250

Unnamed 7, The DiJulius Group 





About The Author

John DiJulius

John R. DiJulius is a best-selling author, consultant, keynote speaker and President of The DiJulius Group, the leading Customer experience consulting firm in the nation. He blogs on Customer experience trends and best practices.