How to recruit staff safely in a pandemic
The recent weeks have brought a huge increase in the incidence of Covid-19 in Poland. The statistics indicating several thousand new cases every day are not very optimistic. How can we conduct recruitment processes safely in such circumstances without exposing employees to the dangerous virus?
First of all, the procedures
We might have had some time to prepare for the second wave of the pandemic, and yet it is not easy to face the reality. It is clear that basic protection of workers in times of the pandemic is absolutely necessary to comply with the guidelines set by the state authorities. Covering the mouth and nose, keeping a safe distance between workers and access to disinfectants are absolutely essential. In most workplaces – especially large companies – it is also necessary to introduce additional internal safety procedures and supervise their observance.
New rules may involve reorganisation of work in such a way as to place workstations as far away from each other as possible, making it much easier for the employees to keep a safe distance. But this is often not possible, therefore, masks or visors (although research shows that the former are much more effective) have to be available to staff in sufficient quantities. It is also necessary to limit personal meetings with people from outside the company by choosing online meetings, and not to hold training courses and conferences that bring together more people in one room.
Recruitment of staff in a pandemic
Every employee of the HR department knows perfectly well that it is interpersonal relations that are the essence of their work. So is it possible to establish relations properly and fruitfully if we are all to follow the principle of social distance? The answer is yes. Not only can you recruit effectively without exposing yourself and others, but most importantly, you can do it in different ways.
The recent months have shown us that many business (and other) activities can be successfully transferred to the online sphere. All recruiters now have a whole set of tools at their disposal that enable them to hold conversations online, from well-known communicators such as Messenger, WhatsApp and Skype, to Zoom tools. Of course, a video-conference will never fully replace a live meeting, but it will help you greatly to get to know the candidates, assess their competences and their answers to questions asked.
While in most cases online interviews will work well in recruitment processes for intellectual and most physical-labour positions, they will not always be suitable. Not every candidate will have the appropriate equipment and skills to make it possible to conduct such an interview. However, we can assume that the vast majority of job interviews can be conducted remotely by an HR professional without having to worry about the risk of infection. In other cases, traditional live meetings will be necessary, but with all safety rules in place: an adequate distance, with mouth and nose coverings used by both sides, in a well-ventilated room. The interview time should be kept to the minimum necessary in order not to unnecessarily expose yourself and the candidate.
The most secure and at the same time beneficial solution is to run the recruitment process outside the company. It is a great idea to cooperate with an outsourcing agency, which will not only relieve the company from the burden of conducting recruitment processes, but will also take care of all issues related to hiring employees. Outsourcing works particularly well in large companies, where employee turnover is high. If you are wondering whether outsourcing will work for your company, make sure you write to our consultants.
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