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5 HR Technology Trends to Watch

Advances in technology have impacted every field, including recruiting.  We’ve put together a list of seven technology trends we think will change the way recruiters operate, as well as some suggestions for how you can leverage these developments to improve your company’s HR functions, positively impact company culture, and recruit (and retain) top talent. Recruiting Chatbots Artificial intelligence (AI) can be used to hold text-based conversations with individuals who land on your company’s recruiting page, presenting a cost-effective way to provide real-time answers to potential applicants.  Some tech companies are also working on developing chatbots that can help new employees get set up after being hired, so they are not roaming around looking for someone who can answer their questions or frantically flipping through the employee handbook.  Integrating an AI chatbot can help attract potential employees, ease the transition for new employees, and increase productivity. Mobile Mobile app usage within...
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Self-Directed Learning in the Workplace

Getting employees to participate in training seminars (let alone actually pay attention to them) can be like pulling teeth.  No matter how important or relevant the training, there will be people who think it doesn’t apply to them, people who show up then sit in the corner and doodle, people who leave after lunch, and so on, which can create the impression that you’ve just wasted a lot of money trying to get people to learn a new skill or process that could help them perform their job more effectively.  One way to combat this is to implement a self-directed learning program that allows employees to pursue their own education, expand their skill sets, and improve performance on their own schedule.  Below, we’ve provided some insight into why self-directed learning can be of value and how to implement a program of your own.

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How to Retain Top Talent

After putting the time and effort into finding the best suited candidates for an open position, you will want to ensure that these candidates stay and continue to contribute to the current and future success of your company. Employers are always looking to understand what keeps top talent happy. Here at Potomac Recruiting we suggest utilizing the following tips to ensure that you retain your best employees. Job satisfaction is vital to increasing your retention rate. Failing to recognize what is important to employees will lead to lower productivity, and in turn a lower retention rate. While a competitive salary and good benefits are very important to your employees, there are many additional factors that your employees will value as much or even more, such as developing and maintaining a culture of open communication, ensuring that employees feel valued and understand the goals of the company and the expectations for...
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How to Maximize the Value of an Internship Program for Your Company

Internship programs are ubiquitous around the beltway (and around the world), but few employers approach these arrangements as ways to attract, develop, and retain top talent.  A well-designed internship program will not only help the student or young professional learn valuable skills that will help them in future endeavors, but will create a talent pool of qualified candidates who already have an understanding of your organization and its culture.  We asked our experts to come up with some ideas for employers looking to leverage their internship programs – or start one – to attract fresh talent and expand their candidate pools. Give Interns Real Work  – This tip is the most obvious, but definitely worth bringing up.  An internship is about much more than fetching coffee or making copies, and giving interns real assignments that will help them build their skills while learning about what type of work is expected...
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Adjusting to a New Job

The end goal of any job hunt is, naturally, to accept a position at a new company – which means adjusting to a new company culture.  This can lead to a difficult transition period, during which time you might feel frustrated or like you’ve made a mistake.  Don’t get discouraged, though!  We’ve put together some tips for dealing with an unfamiliar environment and company culture. One: Don’t Panic It’s very easy to get overwhelmed when starting a new job, especially on your first day.  Everything is different: the people, the location, the work, the coffee, and you’re struggling to take it all in and remember everyone’s name and role.  Step one is not to panic.  Yes, it is a lot, but over time you will get everything down – and no one expects you to remember everything right off the bat.  Getting confused or overwhelmed at the beginning is normal,...
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Coping With Office Politics

Unless you’re self-employed (and maybe even then!), chances are high that you will have to deal with at least some form of office politics.  Some people thrive on office politics and seem to be easily able to navigate the in-groups and out-groups, informal networks of influence, and dynamics of power that characterize office relations.  Others prefer to remain on the outskirts and focus on keeping their heads down and getting their work done without drama.  Whether you love or hate office politics, though, escaping is nearly impossible if you hope to move up within the company.  It isn’t enough simply to do good work – you have to make sure that the right people know about how good your work is, demonstrate that you can build team cohesion, and ensure that you are the one receiving credit for your ideas.  So, this week our experts have looked into some steps...
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Reducing Employee Turnover

It’s no industry secret that employee turnover and “job hopping” are on the rise, with fewer people choosing to stay with the same company for the entire length of their careers, as was once common.  This does have some benefits, as employees are gaining a wider variety of experiences and skills which they can apply to each new workplace, but can hinder company growth – especially for small companies.  With that in mind, we asked our HR experts to come up with some tips for reducing employee turnover and improving long-term retention rates.  Tip 1: Review compensation and benefit packages regularly Higher salaries and more attractive benefit packages are regularly cited by job hoppers as some of the top reasons they accepted a new position, so employers can cut down on this motivation by regularly reviewing compensation packages.  Review industry trends to make sure that your employees are being paid...
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How to Improve a Negative Employer Brand

It can happen to any company.  A few negative reviews on Glassdoor, one discontented employee spreading rumors, or a piece of negative press, and all of a sudden your company is suffering from an unattractive brand image.  Happily, however, there are a number of ways employers can turn the situation around and improve a negative brand image problem.  We’ve put together some easy steps that can help you rebuild your company’s image, or even just help you turn your company’s brand from average to excellent. Tip 1: Do your Research Making assumptions about the root cause of your company’s negative brand issue will not help you improve the situation, as you may end up targeting the wrong item and wasting time and money trying to fix something that isn’t broken.  If you’re afraid a branding problem is affecting your company culture and your ability to hire, start by doing some...
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Creating a High Performance Culture

As a manager, you are responsible for setting the tone in the office.  Naturally, not every manager will have the same style: some may prefer to hold weekly staff meetings and provide structured feedback, for example, while others would rather hold staff meetings as necessary and provide feedback on a more ad hoc basis.  Whatever your managerial style, though, almost everyone can agree that it’s best to have a high performance culture where all employees strive to provide the best possible work product.  With that in mind, we’ve put together some tips to help you build a just such a culture in the workplace. Tip 1: Increase Transparency It’s hard for anyone to perform well if they don’t understand how the work product they produce will be used and how it contributes to the overall goals of the company.  When assigning new tasks, make sure everyone involved knows exactly what...
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How to Build a “Talent Pool” for your Company

One of your primary jobs as a hiring manager is building an effective talent pool for your company, which can then be tapped to help you fill any open positions.  With that in mind, we’ve put together some simple tips and tricks to help you create, or improve, an effective pool of candidates.  A truly exceptional talent pipeline will help you simplify your hiring process by providing quick access to pre-screened internal and external candidates who are known to be good fits with your company culture and who are interested in opportunities with your business, and we are happy to assist you with your candidate pool, regardless of where you are in the process! Tip 1: Take advantage of your online presence Last week we discussed some of the key ways to optimize your mobile recruiting process , and this will be very important as you seek to build an...
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How to Attract Millennial Workers

Millennial workers, or those born between about 1980 and 2000, have been trickling into the workforce over the past few years, and will continue to do so over the next decade, leading many business owners and hiring managers wondering how to attract this new generation of employees to their particular company.  Dozens of studies and articles come out every year on millennial traits, millennial goals, and millennial sensibilities as members of older generations try to understand what drives millennials and how to motivate them to succeed in the workplace.  With that in mind, our experts have put down some of their thoughts on how to attract—and retain—millennial workers and build a modern workforce. Tip 1: Build a Strong Web Presence Many companies focus purely on the business aspects of their organization on their website, providing detailed information about service offerings, customer feedback, and past projects, while ignoring cultural aspects.  If...
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Tips for Reducing Workplace Stress

       We all suffer from workplace stress from time to time, especially in today’s fast-paced environment where you are expected to take on a lot of responsibilities and have constant access to your phone and e-mail.  Here is a simple list of quick steps you can take to help you change the way you approach your work—and your coworkers—and lower your stress levels, making you more relaxed, positive, and productive around the office. Tip 1: Take a Breather – It may sound too simple or too “New Agey,” but next time you find your tension levels rising in the office, give yourself a break and focus on taking deep breaths for 10 minutes.  Even 1 minute can help, if that’s all the time you have!  When e-mails are flowing into your inbox and you feel yourself starting to panic because you have too many tasks to accomplish, taking...
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How to Minimize Workplace Negativity

Negativity in the workplace is, unfortunately, a fairly common problem managers face, regardless of industry or location.  Though every office environment is unique, we’ve put together a list with some straightforward tips for reducing negativity and ill feelings that, hopefully, every manager can implement as part of a strategy to build a positive atmosphere. Tip 1: Provide adequate monetary compensation As an employer, you certainly hope that your workers are coming into the office every day for more than just a paycheck.  You want your employees to find meaning in their work, believe in the company, and get a sense of personal fulfillment from their efforts.  At the end of the day, though, your employees all have to pay their bills, and no matter how much they love their job or the office environment, they will leave eventually if they aren’t making enough to support their families, especially if they’re...
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Steps to Build Brand Awareness

Increasing brand awareness is crucial for growth, but unfortunately there is no cookie-cutter, tried-and-true path to success.  The steps you will have to take to increase brand awareness for your business will vary based on your market, your target audience, where you are looking to grow, and your current position, among many other factors.  That said, this week our experts have put together some general steps for building brand awareness using social media that we hope you will all find useful, and we are available to discuss any questions or concerns about increasing brand awareness within your specific niche! 1. Research your Social Media Platforms These days, everyone knows the power of social media to make or break a brand.  The key to successfully improving brand awareness through social media, though, is to research the market you would like to expand and chose platforms that will allow you to publish...
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How to Offer Hiring Perks on a Budget

We touched last week on the topic of offering non-monetary or low-cost bonuses to improve employee engagement , so this week it seems natural to discuss how to offer hiring perks on a tight budget. We’ve all heard about some of the massive packages new hires at large corporations like Google and Facebook receive: large monetary bonuses, gym memberships, company cars, relocation bonuses, and so on.  If you’re a small business or feeling the crunch of the economic downturn, you may be worried that you’re losing out on talent because you can’t afford to offer lucrative deals to attract top employees.  Don’t get discouraged—there are plenty of low-cost perks you can offer that will appeal to everyone!  We’ve put together a list of 10 simple perks that will help you attract new employees—and keep your existing employees happy and productive! Offer Flexible Hours: Letting potential new hires know that they...
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Building Employee Engagement

In today’s world of budget cuts and economic uncertainty, it’s no surprise that employee engagement is dropping.  Companies are being forced to do more with less, and often that means demanding more of employees without being able to provide bonuses or raises.  This, in turn, is making many employees feel overwhelmed and overworked, and this stress can lead to disengagement and loss of passion at the office.  With this in mind, Potomac Recruiting has come up with some simple tips every manager can incorporate to boost engagement without breaking the bank! Tip 1: Give Out Positive Feedback Whenever Possible Make sure your employees know when they’ve done a good job on a task, even if it’s something small—you’d be surprised how far a public pat on the back can go towards improving morale!  Additionally, encourage employees to give positive feedback to each other whenever appropriate, and to share in accomplishments...
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The Importance of Creating a Culture of Ethics

In today’s business world, more than ever, it is crucial that business leaders establish a culture of ethical behavior within their workplace. Without values such as trustworthiness, responsibility, and respect, every company is susceptible to many forms of misconduct in the workplace.  Company executives have a responsibility to instill these good values and morals in their culture—and to set a good example by adhering to their own rules!  Instilling this culture of ethics is most effective when employers begin to make these values clear from the time employees are hired.  With this in mind, Potomac Recruiting has compiled a guide to building a culture of ethics in the workplace: The first step in creating an ethical workforce comes during recruiting .  One of the most important aspects of business today is having employees that you can trust, so when hiring look for candidates who have exhibited ethical behavior in the...
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About Us

Potomac Recruiting consultants are specialists in talent. Our experienced consultants are passionate about finding the right people for your business—that’s the Potomac Recruiting advantage. We specialize in finding the people who will help your business exceed its goals, and our success is measurable: in today’s fast-moving world Potomac Recruiting is proud that our retention rate is 93%.  

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