I guess we could say this is the million dollar question. In a large metropolitan area, say the Silicon Valley or the Los Angeles basin, school districts are a dime a dozen. Drive 10 minutes in one direction, and in some areas, you could cross over a few different districts.
If districts are in need of teachers (and often administrators as well), what can they do to attract potential staff members?
A district has to have a clearly articulated, internalized vision. Let’s face it – if employees have a choice of where to work, it only makes sense that a district that knows what it stands for, knows where it’s going, and is going somewhere spectacular is a place that is pretty darn attractive. This is especially important when looking to recruit millennials, who characteristically seek transparency, collaboration, and instant gratification and recognition.
What is the professional development plan and how will you support new staff? Especially for those new to education, fresh out of credential programs, the desire to continue to hone their craft is important. What technology is available? How can they collaborate and grow professionally? Connecting with others is important, so the work place we sell to potential employees needs to focus on the connections and opportunities for growth and advancement.
What do you do for onboarding? We don’t typically talk or think about “onboarding” in education, but now that I’m reading “The First 90 Days” by Michael Watkins, there is something to be said for bringing new staff into the culture as quickly as possible so the typical 90 day delay on productivity can be significantly shortened. (and yes, this will be the topic of a future blog post)
Finally, what do you celebrate? True celebrations are a great way to recruit and retain employees. Staff like to work in places where they can be honored for great work. Yes, I said great and not good, as no one is thrilled with attention for mediocrity. But a workplace with others who play at the A Game level daily, who share those skills, and who are acknowledged for their accomplishments are better at attracting staff.
Hiring season is almost upon us. How are you marketing these key attractors?