Case Study | How Lifestyle Solutions built an award-winning hiring process within a candidate-tight market

As a provider of care services to those in need, Lifestyle Solutions’ success in their industry brought rapid growth to the organisation. Needing to expand their team, they required a strategy to find support workers within a candidate-tight market that was unlike any other. The result? Winning at the inaugural SEEK Star Awards.

We spoke to Maria Steel and Caro Bryant about how Talegent has helped enable the success Lifestyle Solutions have had in refining its talent acquisition strategies.

Maria Steel
Chief People Officer, Lifestyle Solutions
Caro Bryant
Senior Talent Specialist, Lifestyle Solutions

Who Are Lifestyle Solutions?

As a non-profit care provider for children in out-of-home care, young adults, and people with disabilities, Lifestyle Solutions provide everyday support for the most vulnerable in Australian communities. Their services are designed specifically for each individual’s needs and can include anything from providing somewhere comfortable and safe to live, to simply helping them make shopping trips to the local supermarket. To ensure they provide support to all those in need, support workers are stationed nationwide throughout Australia, covering the main cities and remote locations alike.

Helping their clients achieve personal goals and foster genuine happiness is what Lifestyle Solutions is dedicated to, and it’s why they’ve identified four key values with which to center their services around:

Lifestyle Solutions’ Challenges Before Talegent

As Lifestyle Solutions grew rapidly throughout 2019, a large number of job vacancies were opening up. Because of this, they quickly realised that a new hiring strategy would be needed if they were going to maintain their momentum.

Caro describes, “Our vacancies were growing at a rapid rate…we knew that jobs were open for longer and we weren’t able to fill them as quickly.”

Lifestyle Solutions was having trouble finding support workers due to a candidate market that was severely limited for two main reasons:

  • A rapidly growing industry meant there simply weren’t enough workers with experience in the field
  • Recruiting in remote locations meant there often wasn’t a diverse workforce present

And as 2020 got underway, Lifestyle Solutions’ growth continued. However, the industry’s already-narrow candidate market became even narrower.

“Covid only exacerbated this,” Maria explains.

To overcome these limitations, it was clear that Lifestyle Solutions needed to supplement its hiring process. Their original system simply couldn’t meet the organisation’s new demands while still ensuring a quality hire. Lifestyle Solutions realised that if they were going to fill their growing list of job vacancies with the right candidates, their new hiring process would need to answer two questions:

  • How can we assess whether they’d be the right fit for us and align with our values?
  • How can we attract more candidates to apply from outside the industry?

What Talegent Tools do Lifestyle Solutions use?

The updated candidate journey

Applying Talegent in the initial stages of their candidate journey, Lifestyle Solutions makes use of Talegent’s Immersive Branding & Values Assessment and Video Interview tool.

Branding & Values Assessment

A 6-minute, interactive and immersive experience that showcases Lifestyle Solutions and their values, while also giving a preview of the role the candidate is applying for. They get to watch as current team members and customers speak candidly about Lifestyle Solutions and what their day-to-day involves. Here, Lifestyle Solutions assess how well a candidate aligns with their core values.

Video Interview

A tool where candidates record themselves answering 5-6 short, pre-recorded questions that assess the core competencies: motivational fit, compliance, customer focus, problem-solving, and communication. Here, Lifestyle Solutions assess whether candidates have the transferrable skills suitable for the role.

Why Lifestyle Solutions chose Talegent

Forming a collaborative partnership

As an organisation that places such a strong focus on upholding its core values, it’s crucial to Lifestyle Solutions that their team do the same. As such, they needed a way to assess how aligned each candidate was with their specific Values Framework and whether they’d be the right fit. It was here that an emphasis was placed on the partnership aspect of Talegent’s services.

“With the tool being dynamic, it’s the partnership between us that has made this successful,” Maria explains.

Rather than simply measuring candidates against a general set of values, Talegent’s Immersive Branding & Values Assessment was specially configured to match Lifestyle Solutions’ framework of Keep calm & be happy, Respect lives here, Make it matter, Own it. And that partnership can further be seen through the ongoing support and continued improvement of the assessment itself to suit Lifestyle Solutions’ specific needs. For example, by defining what makes a successful team member, profiles are created that let us adjust the screening process to find candidates that match.

As Maria continues, “the tool is flexible enough to go and review the successful people in our business and find the values that made them successful.”

A focus on the candidate

Because Lifestyle Solutions needed to make the most of the limited candidate market, top of the priority list was to have a strong, candidate-driven approach. One that would attract candidates to apply by presenting an enjoyable screening experience, rather than deter them with one that feels like a chore to complete.

Caro mentions, “Providing a positive candidate experience is critical in a competitive candidate market.  How a job seeker feels and the perception they develop about a potential employer is based on every interaction an applicant has during the recruitment process.”

As this focus on a strong candidate experience also goes hand-in-hand with their need to widen the candidate market and attract more applicants, it gave Lifestyle Solutions the chance to turn candidates into potential promoters.

Caro adds, “if you’ve had a great experience, you’ll tell a friend but if you’ve had a bad experience, you’ll tell 20 friends.”

By providing candidates with unique insight into the team they’ll be joining and the role they’ll be filling, Lifestyle Solutions is positioned as an employer that is open and honest, while also showing why they’re great to work for. An experience that candidates are encouraged to share with their peers, attracting more candidates from outside their industry to apply.

The Results

Through working together to create a candidate-driven hiring process, Lifestyle Solutions and Talegent achieved fantastic results. Upon completing the assessment, each candidate was presented with a short feedback survey about their experience. Here’s how they responded:

And to top it all off, Lifestyle Solutions walked away with the 2021 Best Candidate Experience Initiative Award at the national SEEK Star Awards. An incredible achievement that we’re still celebrating!

It’s been a pleasure to work alongside the lovely team at Lifestyle Solutions so far, and we look forward to continuing our partnership.

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