How to Recruit Warehouse Employees in a Tight Labor Market

Posted by Advanced Mobile Group on May 5, 2023 8:00:00 AM


Recruiting and retaining warehouse staff has always been a challenge. But the problem seemed to reach new heights during the pandemic as companies struggled with supply chain issues, unprecedented demand, and record-setting unemployment. Even though employment figures have rebounded, not everyone wants to work in a warehouse environment.

The challenge for warehouses and distribution centers is creating an environment that attracts and retains a quality workforce. The 2023 labor market will continue to be tight. Here’s how you can recruit warehouse employees in these conditions. 

1. Hone Your Job Descriptions

Jobseekers can pick and choose among various opportunities in a tight labor market. The more honest and upfront you are in your job descriptions, the better the chances are that you’ll attract the right candidates. 

Make sure your job descriptions thoroughly outline what is expected in the role. But also set yourself apart by focusing on how your business is different. Do you offer on-the-job training, mentorships, or use advanced technology to make the work easier? Be specific. 

2. Advertise in the Right Places

If you have open warehouse positions to fill, make sure you are advertising them in more than one place. Some of your best options include:

  • 230509-how-to-recruit-warehouse-employees-in-a-tight-labor-market-1Your company website — You can start by posting your open positions on your own website. This is an effective recruitment method since you can also accept applications through your website. 
  • Major job boards — You will often get the most traction through ads on major job boards like Indeed, Monster, and LinkedIn. 
  • Niche job boards — Another effective strategy is to post ads on niche job boards like so you reach people who are specifically searching for warehouse jobs. 
  • Social media — Many employers also post their need on social media websites like Facebook, Twitter, and even TikTok to engage with potential future employees. 
  • Traditional options — Some people still look for jobs in the newspaper or on physical bulletin boards. You might get some traction with these types of ads, depending on your community. 

3. Develop Your Employer Brand

In a tight labor market, employer branding matters. People aren’t just looking for a job but also an excellent place to work long-term. If you haven’t worked on your employer brand, now is the time to start. Why are you an employer of choice? What sort of culture has your company developed that supports a positive working environment? If possible, see if you can collect some employee testimonials that demonstrate your values. 

4. Leverage Technology Solutions

Technology has become an essential part of our everyday lives. And it can also help your warehouse staff recruitment efforts. You can use technology to streamline the applicant screening and onboarding process. 

Even more important, technology can make many warehouse jobs safer, easier, and more attractive. For example, mobile voice solutions and cobots can streamline the picking and packing processes, making them less labor-intensive. 

5. Offer Competitive Compensation

230228-creating-an-efficient-unstoppable-ideal-warehouseWages are one of the most vital factors that workers consider when deciding where to work. In fact, warehouse employees ranked pay as their top priority for 11 straight years. You’ll certainly stand apart from the competition if you can offer competitive wages. 

But salary isn’t the only way to compete and attract quality workers. You offer other attractive compensation items like health insurance coverage, retirement benefits, and paid time off. 

6. Create an Employee Referral Program

Your existing employees are a valuable recruiting resource. They understand what it takes to do the job and will use their experience with your company to pass the word along to others. If you already have a positive internal culture, your employees are probably already singing your praises. 

You can also set up a formal referral program that offers rewards for a successful referral. When you hire someone, and they stay for a certain period, the referring employee receives some type of bonus. 

7. Emphasize Employee Safety

221101-why-a-flexible-attitude-in-the-warehouse-will-retain-workers-2Warehouse work can be incredibly hazardous and tedious. Whether injuries happen from falling objects or repetitive motion, there are risks involved, which makes this type of work unattractive for some. If you make safety and health a priority in your warehouse, this can help alleviate any concerns from potential employees. 

You can discuss safety and health initiatives in your employment ads or job descriptions. Your company can also implement various solutions to reduce risks, such as automation to reduce repetitive tasks. 

8. Provide Training and Advancement Opportunities

Employees don’t like feeling lost in their positions or like they have little direction. One of the best ways to attract and retain workers is by offering a robust training program and upward mobility. 

When employees come on board, provide various types of training, such as job shadowing, online training, and hands-on training. And give employees the option to move laterally or up within the company over time. 

9. Get Connected in the Community

Being involved in the community can help boost your employer branding campaign and help your recruiting efforts. There are many opportunities for your business to gain name recognition and connect with people who are looking for work or can give referrals. 

Your business can get involved with community colleges and local universities to find students looking for work. It can also give back to the community through various charitable efforts, which elevates your brand and improves your culture. 

10. Stay in Touch With Job Candidates

Think about your hiring process from the candidate’s point of view. When someone applies for a job, they don’t want to be left in the dark. Be as transparent as possible about your hiring process so your job candidates know what to expect. By staying in touch with your candidates, you can avoid losing them to a competitor. 

While most warehouse employers would prefer a labor market that is full of qualified and available candidates, this won’t always be the prevailing condition. When you have a pressing need for labor and candidates are scarce, more innovation is necessary. Use these suggestions to help you recruit and retain workers to achieve the best possible results for your business. 

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Topics: Warehouse Managment, Warehouse Safety

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