Where does staff engagement start?


With today's difficult recruitment climate, retaining talented staff is more important than ever. Effective policies around wellbeing, workload and flexible working all help to improve staff morale and help retention, but at what point does staff engagement really start? The onboarding process? The interview process? Or even before candidates have seen your vacancy advertised?

The answer is that your potential work force's engagement with your school or trust starts when they first hear about your setting. This may be when they see your vacancy advertised, or it might start sooner than that if they live locally to your setting or know someone who works for you.

Early positive engagement starts with your reputation as a place to work, or send a child to. Word of mouth from parents, the local community and your staff all play a big part in your reputation, as does your online presence. Do your website and social media paint a positive picture that will attract quality candidates to your setting?

Your recruitment pack and interview process also play a key part in engaging potential staff. Does your pack accurately reflect the job role and your school or trusts' values and culture? A positive, fair interview process that is honest and shows your setting in its best light will enhance engagement even with those candidates you didn't appoint.

Once you've appointed your new member of staff, the onboarding process is the next major step in enhancing engagement. Your new team member will (hopefully) be excited to start their new role, and feeling unsupported in an unfamiliar environment is a quick way for someone to become dissatisfied and unengaged with their job.

Staff engagement starts before your potential candidates set foot through your doors, and a supportive, wellbeing focussed culture is key to making this engagement positive. Your culture will influence how your staff talk about their job and be reflected in your interview process and onboarding procedures, all of which play important roles in attracting quality staff members to your team.

Keystone's team of HR professionals can provide advice on retention strategy and recruitment. Our HR retainer team are CIPD qualified advisors who have worked in schools and trusts, and will support your needs with knowledgeable solutions and straightforward advice.

Find out more about Keystone's HR services

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