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Hiring new employees after layoffs is a very touchy process. New applicants will be skeptical of their job security if they take a position at your company, current employees will be on edge about their own positions, and tensions will be high as new talent comes in to replace the lost talent. If you’re going through this rough time, here are some tips on how to make it as painless as possible.
Tip #1: Before you start bringing in new hires, make sure you communicate these changes with your current employees. It’s likely for current employees to become upset seeing new hires coming in to replace the positions of their friends, and it may make them fear for their own job as well. That’s why it’s important you let them know exactly why you are recruiting new hires, which positions you will be recruiting for, and why it’s important to the success of the company to bring in this new talent. You could get this message across through a company newsletter, a company-wide meeting, or through e-mail. Just make sure the tone of your message does not come off as too defensive.
Tip #2: When it’s time to start interviews with new potential employees, it’s important that you just be honest. Make sure you know exactly why the layoffs occurred, what your company’s vision is going forward, and how these new hires will fit into that. Chances are, the candidate has already done their research on your company and already knows about the layoffs. If you don’t address the issues with the candidate, it could come off as a warning sign to them. Plan out what you’re going to say ahead of time, and assure them that they won’t have to worry about losing their job if they choose to work for you.
Tip #3: Keep your ears open for feedback from your employees. Pay attention to how they’re feeling about all of these changes, and make sure to have a reassuring talk with those who are feeling negatively about it. Some employees will be more vocal about their feelings than others. Seek them out and listen to their concerns. A good way to change their perspective on things is asking them for suggestions, like how to go about training the new hires or how to put the company more at ease with all of the changes happening.
Lastly, Tip #4: Offer those being laid off career transition support. This will show your current employees that you are not simply tossing them aside. When they see you are actually taking action to assist those who have been laid off, it will reduce their fear and resentment. You can offer this support through external outplacement firms, or through your own career center on site if you have one. By doing so, not only are you helping former employees and helping to relax current ones, this is also a good way to show the public that you’re a company who really cares about their employees.
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