I have noticed the “Help Wanted” sign is back in style and littering the front lawns of businesses these days. Just take a drive around one day into any industrial park and you will see what I am talking about. “Help Wanted All Shifts”, “Machinists Wanted”! Do these signs really work? It is keeping the sign companies busy. I guess if you are a machinist driving around looking for any shop that is hiring? Here’s the thing, 80% of the shops are hiring and the other 20% would make room for a good machinist any day of the week. So, you do the math on that one. I’m sure the companies that have a sign out front are not just relying on the sign to attract talented machinists. So why do they do it? They do it so that every person that drives by can see that they are hiring.
Let’s think about this for a moment.
We have traffic that drives by our sign, hopefully they read our sign, go home and tell someone about our sign, remember where they saw the sign, and so on. This is a lot of hope and chance for a shop wanting to grow their business.
“Help Wanted” signs have been around for hundreds if not thousands of years. It looks like they have stood the test of time. I keep coming back to the question of how effective are they? They must be effective for some industries or we wouldn’t see them at all. I don’t recall seeing signs out front of manufacturing companies though. It was always assumed that as a machinist if you lost your job in the morning you would have one by afternoon. So why the signs?
Here is the answer. Back in the day manufacturers had a big enough pool of talented machinists to pull from to maintain the demand for producing product on time and growth. Fast forward to today and we see what looks like a shortage of machinists. Is this really the case or are we not looking in the right places? Remember what we are talking about? Signs in the lawn! I can appreciate a sign or two letting everyone know you are looking for machinists. Don’t let this be your only tool in your job search.
What other methods do you have to find qualified machinists? Word of mouth has always the been the best way to find people and these days people communicate through social media. Facebook alone has 2 billion people on it. I am personally in a machinist group on Facebook where machinist talk shop every day.
The fact is that more and more people are online these days. Not only are they online, they are on mobile devices. When a company decides to advertise job openings in social media it’s like adding fuel to their recruiting efforts. Imagine having the ability to reroute every car on the road down your street of business passing by your “Help Wanted” signs. Then imagine having the ability to send all machinists down your street. This is the power of social media, directing traffic to you! The companies that have figured this out can focus on what they do best. Making parts, not signs!
I remember the owner of a company I worked for asking me to go find out where machinists are hanging out and to go get them. Now we know where they are, all we must do now is go and get them.