The unemployment rate in Maine last month, according to Maine's Department of Labor, was 2.9%. This is the lowest rate since Eisenhower was President.
Ironically, this so called good news for the economy is actually a dose of bad news for Maine business owners. Their growth and profitability is being hampered by an inability to fill critical job openings.
The labor crunch is affecting businesses of all types and sizes ranging from lobster boats to jet engine makers. Diana Roberge, a recruiter for Hannaford, one of Maine’s largest private employers, told the Portland Press Herald that the company has a wide range of positions open, from part-time jobs in retail to management jobs at its corporate headquarters in Scarborough.
Ms. Roberge also told the paper, "We just have to get more creative with how we recruit." This sentiment was echoed by recruiters like L.L. Bean, Bangor Savings Bank, Tyler Technologies, and EMHS in a webinar hosted by the SBA and Portland Radio Group
Many Maine companies have had success finding the qualified candidates they need by ditching traditional recruitment methods such as job boards, job fairs, and newspapers. Instead, they are turning to radio advertising to target candidates who are already working, perhaps for a competitor, but not currently looking to make a change.
These target candidates are referred to as "passive" job candidates because they are already working but are not in the market for a new job. According to a recent study conducted by Nielsen, there are approximately 321,000 passive job candidates working in Southern Maine.
Portland radio is the perfect way to recruit passive job candidates. The medium reaches almost every passive job candidate across York, Cumberland, Oxford, Androscoggin, and Sagadahoc counties. This is more than all other media including TV and internet job sites.
Regardless of the type of job that is open, according to Nielsen, Portland radio reaches practically every type of passive job candidate. Blue collar. White collar. Healthcare workers. Food service workers. Construction workers. Management. Laborers. Every one of the most qualified job candidates tunes-in to a local radio station each week.
Radio Recruitment Advertising Is A Smart Move
Local businesses who have advertised on Portland radio to recruit qualified candidates have found great success. "It was actually one of the smartest moves we made," says Ron LaFlamme, former Transportation Manager at Hannaford Transportation.
Doug Martin, President of W.H. Demmons agrees, "Newspaper ads didn't really do a lot for us. Online ads have been working a little bit. When we started on the radio we got a fairly quick responses.:
The ability of radio to reach qualified job candidates in Maine embraces every type of industry and small business including manufacturing, retail, sales, construction, and accounting.
Jeffery Verrill, Executive Vice President of Salt Associates, turned on the radio to recruit disability claim associates with at least two years of experience. After the first week of the campaign, Jeffery said the results were, "Dynamite! We got 12 responses. Three or four were qualified and we are expecting more."
Terry Skillin, owner of Skillins Greenhouses, said he experienced similar success using radio. "It was a three day campaign with amazing results."
Doug Martin finds one other advantage of using radio as a recruitment tool. He says, "We call them recruitment ads, but they do accomplish more than recruiting. They get our name out in the community and that's very beneficial for us."
More Recruitment Advice For Maine Small Business Owners
- Improve Employee Recruitment: Tell The Story of Your Maine Business
- Portland Radio Offers Remedy for Recruitment Woes of Maine Small Business
- Improve Employee Recruitment By Branding Your Maine Small Business
- Portland Radio Is Perfect Tool For Recruiting White-Collar Employees