Applying for a job with the government is no simple task. Multi-page applications, filled with bureaucratic language and no human interaction is not the ideal mix for recruiting top talent.
This year, NRCan wanted to do something different.
The goal was to break down barriers that have become all too familiar for members of the public – difficulty navigating the job application process, lack of recognition of NRCan as an employer of choice, limited opportunities for face-to-face interactions and tackling the need for advertised appointments.
On April 19, 2018, over 3,000 job seekers attended the NRCan Talent and Networking Fair at the Shaw Centre with the hopes of landing a job working with NRCan. Needless to say, the number of participants far exceeded expectations!
At the event, many participants voiced their appreciation for the opportunity to speak directly with Government of Canada representatives. In return, hiring managers had the agility to respond to candidates in a way that a regular selection process would not allow and many took swift action with job offers immediately after the Fair.
Over the last six months, 32 positions have been successfully staffed as a direct result of the NRCan Talent and Networking Fair. Furthermore, using the CVs received on-site, electronic inventories have been created for a wide variety of classifications allowing easy access to prospective hiring managers.
"I felt like a guidance counsellor, helping to match the best candidates up with the best job opportunities for them. It was very rewarding."
- Jennifer Talsma, Manager
Business Development Unit
The NRCan Talent and Networking Fair helped facilitate face-to-face networking and on-site interviews by connecting hiring managers to potential employees in a swift and efficient manner. The set up of application stations also meant that HR advisors were able to help participants better understand the government hiring process and navigate GCJobs. This was especially effective, given that an estimated 50% of participants had not signed up for a GCJobs account prior to attending the fair.
In keeping with NRCan’s commitment to diversity and social inclusion, organizers also ensured that there was targeted outreach to veterans, Indigenous groups, NRCan’s employment equity networks and those who might be interested in targeted recruitment programs like the Policy Analyst Recruitment and Development Program and the Federal Internship for Newcomers Program.
Leading up to the event, NRCan employees supported departmental marketing efforts by sharing news of the Fair through their personal online networks, GC Connex accounts, and social media platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. Using less time and resources compared to traditional strategies such as recruitment pools and inventories, the NRCan Talent and Networking Fair has offered a unique and streamlined way to facilitate the recruitment and staffing of new talent external to the department. It has also reinforced the belief that innovative approaches to corporate services are essential to shift the department towards a more agile, inclusive, equipped recruiting process.