Recruiting in a Labor Shortage

Published 05/17/2021
Strategies for Recruiting in a Labor Shortage
 
Federal and state officials, who spent the last year trying to keep Americans safe in their homes during the pandemic, are suddenly grappling with the opposite problem: how to lure them back to work.
 
There are rising concerns that the economic recovery could be jeopardized even as lockdown restrictions are lifted if restaurants, travel companies and other businesses are unable to hire enough staff to keep up with surging consumer demand.
 
As explained by Christopher Ryan, Avionté’s Chief Strategy & Marketing Officer
 
Strategies for Staffing Companies to Deal with Labor Shortages
Due to the US labor shortage, you should expect your recruiters will work harder to find fewer new candidates. Cutting-edge ATS software technology with sophisticated multichannel communications will be a fundamental requirement to operate a staffing firm, but even the best technology can’t find people who don’t exist. Here are strategies your firm can implement to overcome the labor shortage and win in a competitive market.
 
Redefine the recruiting role
Recruiters will become talent managers. Your best recruiters will cultivate an ongoing community of talent, even for hourly contingent work. Your most important asset is the database of talent you already have in your system today. The staffing companies that succeed in this rapidly changing labor environment will figure out how to engage, motivate, retain, and retrain the staff they manage today. 
 
Invest in Employee Development, Training and Retention
If you have reliable employees, you can retrain them to handle a variety of assignments. This process will help you generate substantially more billings per employee. Not only will this investment benefit your business, but working to develop engaged workers will demonstrate your loyalty and improve retention. Investing in employee incentive programs will also allow you to retain your most dependable employees.
 
Embrace Diversity and Cultivate Community
Your talent community will rapidly become far more diverse than it is even today. Creating an inclusive and welcoming environment (physical or virtual) will be a core business requirement to assess, engage, and train candidates from a wide variety of backgrounds.  
 
Prepare for wage inflation 
With or without legislative intervention, the simple law of supply and demand will inexorably put pressure on wages. This is especially true for work that requires regular, defined work hours, on-site presence, and physical labor. You may have difficult discussions with your most price-sensitive clients as they grapple with the choice of higher hourly rates or doing without the labor they need. You may also need to find transportation and dependent care solutions that enable workers to actually show up.
 
Redesign your business for speed
Speed is everything. Your team and your technology will have to be laser-focused on cutting the transaction time from client requisition to on-site arrival of reliable workers. Over the next few years, staffing turnaround time will be measured in minutes and hours, not days and weeks. Audit and rethink your processes to be built based on short, rapid transactions. This will require you to rethink your technology, employment practices, workflow, and vendor relations to ensure your team is working as efficiently as possible. 
 
Conclusions
The bottom line is that the value proposition for temporary and contingent staffing is changing. Wage arbitrage, the difference in cost between full time labor and contingent labor, will shrink. The real value will come from providing reliable temporary workers on demand, as part of an employer’s overall workforce strategy. Value creation comes from using labor hours exactly when and where they are most needed rather than because they are cheaper.   
 
How ASN can help
 
As you can see by Mr. Ryan's analysis, the U.S. job market has in a single year, been transformed into something unfamiliar. Businesses don't like the unfamiliar - they like stable and normal - so there is a lot to worry about.
 
That's where we come in. We're paid to worry for you. To handle these challenging times so you can focus on other areas of your business with the assurance that Available Staffing Network will provide you with the right employees when you need them. Give us a call and let's talk.