Top tips for SME workforce planning during the EOFY

Planning

The end of financial year can be a hectic time, particularly for SME business. With books, budgets and tax time on the mind, it’s easy for business owners to cast recruitment plans aside to focus on other aspects of the business.

The truth is that end of financial year extends well beyond inventory and overheads, and is actually one of the best times of the year to review workforce planning and lock in recruitment plans.

Similar to months like December and January, business owners incorrectly believe there is a lull in candidates looking for work and as a result don’t pre plan and become stuck when employees suddenly move on.

From the beginning of June marketing becomes saturated with EOFY jargon which triggers something in individuals to start reassessing their own plans. The June/July period is a time when people sit down with their partners, look at their income, and set new goals. This can often result in new financial year resolutions and job seeking.

The impact for business owners is twofold. Firstly, now is a great time to recruit if you have an immediate spot to fill because there are plenty of candidates looking for work. Secondly and most importantly, the EOFY is also the perfect time to review your workforce plan to determine when you next expect a spot to open up in your team, and work backward from there, as to when you should advertise.

Here are a few tips to make workforce planning an easier task for hiring managers and business owners in the coming month.

1.Talk to your team

Do you know what your employees future plans and expectations are? Do you know which, if any, might plan to leave in the next year? Uncovering the desires and interests of your staff can allow you to identify areas for professional development and upskilling to better use their talents, while also keeping them engaged and motivated to stay with you well into the future.

2. Ask your employees to refer their friends

No matter what you do, employees will eventually move on. If you have a particular culture you want to keep alive, tell your staff about your recruitment plans the type of roles and people you want to hire and when, this will encourage employees to refer likeminded people to your business.

3. Talk to a recruitment consultant

For many business owners, recruitment is only one of many hats that has to be worn every day. It can save time and money to outsource recruitment to an industry professional. Around the end of financial year recruiters and advertisers will often offer EOFY discounts or pre-purchase options without expiration dates to allow you to lock in your recruitment plans and not be caught off guard when someone does leave.

4. Use social media to engage future candidates

A strategy in it’s own right, social media is a prime place to capture future candidates. Create your mud map for when and if, employees will leave your team and account for planned attrition. If you know how many times you had to recruit last financial year get on the front foot this year with a similar number in mind and set scheduled posts every month to educate candidates on what roles you’ll be looking to fill so you’re front of mind when good candidates do want a new opportunity.

There is little room for error when SMEs recruit because resources are often short and time is precious. If you don’t want to be caught off guard in the new financial year, be open and honest with your team and yourself, and add recruitment to your EOFY checklist.


About the author

Saxon-Marsden-HugginsSaxon Marsden-Huggins is the managing director of Recruit Shop, which offers recruitment services to small businesses in Australia and New Zealand.