While most of the world has gone digital, many SMEs still don’t understand how to use available technology to attract and retain talent. Studies of digital adoption by Malaysian SMEs show that many businesses only use computers for the most basic of tasks.
Acquiring and attracting talent
But how can you use technological tools to attract and retain talent? Here are the four main areas in which you should consider applying your digital strategies.
Technology has changed hiring talent, from simple job boards a few years ago to full-scale career websites and platforms (like LinkedIn) dedicated to helping businesses hire quality candidates.
Using digital tools like social media marketing, you can establish your brand presence online to attract customers and potential candidates. These digital platforms allow SMEs to promote their brands to reach potential talent, no longer restricted to being in the same geographic areas.
This means that you can attract and hire talent from countries around the world. You can conduct interviews online using any of the video conferencing platforms and have employees ready for work even before they physically get to your office.
Managing your workforce
Your employees want access to digital training and skill development. Randstad’s Workplace 2025: The Post-Digital Frontier
survey notes that 90% of the employees surveyed want to acquire new digital skills in order to further their careers.
This presents an easy to accomplish solution to attract quality candidates to your business: provide training and development. The Malaysian government, through the Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF)
, makes it easier for SMEs to do this.
While you are at it, we also highlighted why it may be a good idea for you to upskill especially in digital learning
. And you can do that with specially curated SME events
like SME BizNet
and upskilling programmes such as the free unifi Go Digital Business Class
for online business and digital marketing.
Engaging employees at work
Keeping employees engaged means that their primary focus is to help your organisation grow. Engaged talents put in more effort into their work, stay longer and talk about the company outside work.
So, how do you use digital tools to engage employees? First, you can start by using survey tools to find out what your employees really want at work. Do they want more feedback, flexible working hours or more money? Then follow up and provide as much of what they need as possible or be transparent about why you can’t meet their needs.
In addition, equip your team with digital tools that match what they already use outside of work. Most people already have Facebook. So, your SME can have a Facebook group or use an app like Slack for company-wide discussions. That way, your talent does not feel like they are taking a step back into the past when they come to work.
Digital compensation and benefits
Wellable’s 2018 Wellness Industry Trends
shows that 79% of the employees are interested in additional benefits other than just salary increases. These make up the monetary and non-monetary packages that help organisations retain employees.
Malaysian SMEs can implement benefits like these such as discount plans, employee car parks, voucher codes, gym memberships and more. Use digital tools and platforms to make these processes easier for you to provide to employees, and for them to understand and access.
Malaysian platforms like Swingvy (featured on SME Community previously)
, allow SMEs to do just that. And the best part is you can get most of the features that you will actually use often for free.
Digital adoption helps SMEs attract talent — the people who will help the organisation grow. And it helps them stay productive and engaged with the company, boosting retention.
This combination of quality talent doing quality work is what makes the best companies become remarkable. By tapping into digital HR strategies like those outlined here, you can position your organisation to stand out from the competition.
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