It’s no secret that finding and retaining top talent for your business can be difficult. Whether you struggle to find qualified skilled workers, lack time to devote to recruiting or simply don’t know where to start — finding the right employees to help grow your business is rarely a straightforward task. Here, we’re sharing a few tips from our Skilled Trades in America report to help you diversify your recruitment strategy and attract top talent.

1. Go online.

If you haven’t already, moving your recruiting efforts online is one of the easiest (and most effective) ways to diversify your search for talent. Whether you post open positions on Craigslist, Indeed, or another site, creating easy-to-find job listings will open your business up to a whole new talent pool. According to a study by Pew Research Center, a majority of U.S. adults have gone online to look for job information – and this number will likely grow as younger generations of job-seekers hit the market.

It’s also a good idea to post open positions on your company’s website and social media pages, so potential employees can access them easily (and learn more about your business in the process).

2. Pass on your skills and knowledge.

Nearly 75% of pros believe that vocational programs in high schools would have a moderate to major impact bringing people to the skilled trades – but only 3% of pros actually try to engage with schools around activities like recruiting, according to our study. Though helping to build a vocational program at a high school requires some leg work, taking this step could be hugely beneficial to helping close the trade labor gap.

If you don’t have time to devote to regular classes, consider talking with local high schools in your area to see if you can attend a career day or job fair and talk more about the benefits of working in the trades.

3. Reach out to underrepresented workers.

Though the skilled trades can offer a satisfying career path for everyone, women make up only 19.7% of the trade workforce, according to our recent study. And people of color face an equally pronounced shortage in the skilled trades. However, these shortages mean there’s an opportunity to recruit new entrants to the field – and include new, more diverse employees in your company. Reach out to apprenticeship programs and unions to find fresh talent from underserved groups, and make sure to let them know that you’re searching for talent.

You may also want to consider finding talent through military associations. While 50% of people surveyed think that recruiting through the military would be beneficial, less than 4% actively try to attract talent this way.

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