How can logistics employers get the right skills and cultural fit?


While the last few months have been challenging for all of us, with many sectors experiencing extreme hardship due to Covid-19, the logistics arena has fared considerably well. In fact, our recent blog outlined how coronavirus has driven exceptional demand for logistics talent over the last few weeks. And with increasing recruitment activity within the sector from the likes of AO and APC, to name just two big brands, the future looks good for both employers and candidates alike.

However, while this is great news, for logistics firms seeking to expand in the coming months, the way in which they recruit is fundamental to ensure that they don’t risk damage from bad hires. This blog explores why not every hire is a good hire and outlines our top tips to ensure employers get the right staff at a time when many are seeking a role in the field.

The cost of a bad hire

There’s no doubt that Covid-19 has shone a spotlight on the logistics sector for all the right reasons. After all, it has ensured supply chains remain open at a time of huge adversity and helped keep the UK moving. And this has resulted in huge swathes of candidates considering a career in the sector which can only be a good thing in an area that has historically faced talent shortages. However multiple people applying for jobs brings with it additional challenges for employers.

Not only are businesses going to be faced with assessing huge numbers of candidates’ skill sets as applicant numbers go up, but they are also going to have to ensure that they make the right choice so they don’t hire individuals that on paper seem like a good fit, but are not culturally aligned to the company. And with research from the Recruitment Employment Confederation revealing last year that a poor hire at mid-manager level with a salary of £42,000 can cost a business more than £132,000 – it demonstrates just how detrimental it can be.

Skills alone won’t cut it: the importance of cultural fit

So with the prospect of financial damage due to a bad hire, not to mention internal damage relating to low morale and loss productivity, getting it right is crucial. And while each job requires varying skill sets, there are a few which are almost always needed – including commercial awareness, numeracy, good problem solving skills and the ability to think quickly and possess a logical and analytical mind. For this blog, we want to focus on how logistics employers can ensure a good cultural fit. Here are our top three tips for ensuring your recruitment process has this at its core:

  1. Know your culture: ask yourself if every member of the recruitment team not only knows your company inside out, but that they are also able to demonstrate it to potential recruits. After all, it’s one thing knowing what your company is all about, but it’s another being able to demonstrate it clearly and concisely.
  2. Demonstrate your culture at every candidate touchpoint: it’s no use defining your culture and then not demonstrating it to potential recruits. Your culture should be inherent in all your recruitment material – including your website, social media channels and job specifications. From the outset, you want any candidate coming into contact with your brand to know what the culture of the business is. Not only will this help them establish if they are the right fit, but it will also greatly reduce the time it takes you to go through applications. It’s also key that if you are using a recruitment partner that they fully understand your culture and can relay this effectively to potential staff members.
  3. Involve your team in the process: an area that often gets overlooked is bringing in existing employees to the recruitment process. And while this shouldn’t be too early on the hiring process, it can really pay off to ask members of your team to meet a candidate in the final stages of the process. After all, they will know the company’s culture inside out and will be able to help assess whether an individual is a suitable match.

What tools can help logistics employers hire the right people?

The good news, however, is that there are plenty of tools and services that logistics employers can tap into to ensure they find the right skills, but also people that are a good cultural fit. And one fantastic way of sourcing the right skills and cultural fit is via psychometric testing. By carrying out assessments, employers can evaluate a candidate’s performance – and crucially psychometric tests are not limited to skills alone, but also personality traits, attitudes and knowledge. And many assessment models provide behavioural reports that hone in on preferred working environment, how they respond to tight deadlines, preferred management style, approach to selling, and much more. Being able to accurately see how well a potential recruit will fit into a business and what their learning and working style is means employers are presented with huge benefits – not to mention time savings. In fact, the team here at WR Search has developed its own tool – which comes at no additional fee – to help clients ensure they have the right set up to find talent that has the right skills and is the right fit for the business. Take a look at our blog post where we talk about it in more detail to see how it can help your business.

The future: getting it right

It’s true that companies will always face a risk when it comes to hiring staff – no process will work each and every time. However, what is certain is that employers who adopt the right approach when it comes to their talent acquisition strategy can limit the chances of a bad hire. If you’re looking to source staff now and want to take advantage of our assessment model, the WR Search team provides cutting edge insight, behavioural assessments and comprehensive on-boarding to save you time and money. We’re so proud of it, we offer a 12-month replacement guarantee should a candidate leave – for any reason. What’s not to like? Contact us today to find out more.