I know that some of you reading this post may not know me, but I’m going to ask you for a favor anyway. I need you to stop saying “we’re always hiring.”
I hear this phrase from editors at the student media outlet I advise, and it was echoed by other student editors during a recent #EditorTherapy chat.
Think about the message you’re sending to potential employees when you say “we’re always hiring.” What you’re actually saying is:
“This job is so undesirable that we never can find enough people to do it.”
“No one wants to work with us.”
“We can’t keep employees.”
“You can decide to come work for us when nothing else works out and you get really desperate because we always need people, and we’ll take anyone.”
Are these the types of messages you want to send?
The alternative is one of basic supply and demand. Having a limited supply of something makes it more appealing. Having an unlimited simply makes it less desirable.
The solution to the “always hiring” problem is simple. You need to think about what you’re really trying to say. What you probably mean is that there always is a vacancy somewhere on your staff. For example, you might have plenty of writers and photographers, but you really need to hire another graphic designer. So, if someone asks if you’re hiring, you answer “We’re pretty full, but we’re looking for a talented graphic designer. If you’d like to apply for another post, I’ll keep your application on file for future consideration.”
Before the semester begins, determine the least number of people you need to successfully operate your publications. Hire to fill those positions. These spots should go to returning staff and those who are highly qualified. Then, open applications for specific positions, stating how many of each you can hire. You’ll be surprised how many areas you have that are full.
Also, when students ask you about possible openings, encourage them to apply early because the “staff fills up” or “a lot of positions fill quickly.” If you’re marketing your positions correctly and treating staffers right, you’ll be telling them the truth.