You’ve probably been hearing a lot about “these uncertain times,” but for many companies, one thing is certain: Hiring has been put on hold.

Given the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s understandable that many companies aren’t hiring right now, especially those that were deemed ‘nonessential.’ At some point, hiring will resume, and businesses that lay the groundwork for that restart now will have a competitive advantage on those that do not.

For hiring personnel, a key step that can and should be taken right now is maintaining engagement with the company’s talent pipeline. Below are a few tips on how to do that and how to tackle the unique HR situation.

Keep in Contact with Existing Applicants

For many HR departments, the COIVD-19 shutdown didn’t happen when the hiring pipeline was devoid of applicants. In many cases, companies got shut down just as they were starting to interview candidates or just after a job opening was posted online.

If you have candidates in your hiring system, don’t lose touch with them. Mass updates can keep multiple candidates engaged, and individualized updates can be used to communicate specific information regarding each candidacy.

Coordinate with Upper Management

In a situation with this much uncertainty and confusion, it’s important for every single member of a company to avoid saying or doing the wrong thing. HR personnel should avoid giving candidates false hope when it comes to the state of hiring at the company.

Miscommunications and missteps can be avoided by coordinating tightly with upper management.

Prioritize Transparency

The best thing a company can do right now prioritizes transparency. Existing applicants should know as much as possible about their candidacy. If a job offer has to be rescinded or a job opening has to be closed, the company should inform people as soon as possible.

Individuals in the company’s talent pipeline should still be engaged with relevant content, but also clued-in to the fact that the company is currently in a hiring freeze.

Other Steps to for HR to Take

In the midst of a hiring freeze, many daily job functions cannot be performed. Management must not only work to keep candidates engaged, but they should also work to keep HR personnel engaged and productive. Engaging HR personnel can mean working ahead, getting the department organized, and looking for ways to increase efficiency. HR personnel can also become involved in multi-departmental initiatives, internal communications campaigns, and public relations campaigns.

HR can also help with workforce adjustments, such as those involving remote work. Some companies may be looking to expand or change roles. HR can be an invaluable resource when it comes to leveraging transferrable skills of existing employees.

We Can Help

At ZDA, we pride ourselves on helping companies navigate difficult situations by providing them with custom talent acquisition solutions and services. If your organization is currently looking for assistance in navigating the ongoing COVID-19 situation, please contact us today.