Is this the most challenging time for talent acquisition?

May 17, 2022 | 5 Mins Caitlyn Simons

2022 is an interesting and challenging time for global HR managers and professionals. They have a lot on their plate right now, specifically when it comes to recruitment and top talent acquisition. The working culture and office environment has changed dramatically due to the global pandemic.

Remote hiring and onboarding are now the norm which has changed the dynamics of hiring and retention. Workers can now apply for jobs remotely and work from anywhere, this leads to a lot of attrition with staff leaving and looking for opportunities that suit their lifestyle a little better.

It also makes the recruitment market a lot more competitive. The company’s brand name, reputation, as well as attractive salary and benefits compensation packages now face stiff competition from competitor companies who may be unable to match these offerings but can offer something different in terms of flexible working hours, 100% remote working and opportunities for people to work with limited supervision.

It all adds up to the most challenging time in recent history for talent acquisition. In this article we’ll take a closer look at this relevant topic.

The landscape has changed, so hiring must change also

It’s a different recruitment world today. Video conferencing calls and even remote onboarding have become normal and acceptable in the hiring process, new employees are onboarded remotely and can go weeks or even months without having any face-to-face meetings with their new colleagues.

There are a lot of recruitment challenges in the world right now. Global employees now have a lot more opportunities available to them and they are assessing what a company can offer them in terms of working hours and lifestyle, instead of focusing on the more traditional attractions such as salary, benefits, and company reputation.

There is a lot of appeal for people to work their own hours and do so via a home office. Some of the new and innovative digital organizations out there are offering potential candidates the opportunity to work on their own time and deliver their duties around their daily life responsibilities, this means that remote employees can deliver their duties without conforming to the standard 9 to 5 hours of the office life. This opens up a whole new world of opportunity for people who want to do more things during normal weekdays that they could not previously do when working in an office. This could range from spending more time with their children, to attending gyms or simply being able to leave and run an errand whenever they want or need to.

The traditional corporate companies and their talent acquisition teams are struggling to compete with this and are realizing that salary and compensation may no longer get the best candidates that they want in the door. This represents a huge headache as talent acquisition is still crucial to a company meeting its global objectives and without people to do the work, they can quickly fall behind the competition. It is simply a war for global talent, and it is the most challenging time that a lot of HR professionals can remember.

The struggle to scale talent acquisition

The global pandemic came along and changed everything. However, a lot of innovative companies look at a global event as an opportunity to pivot and change course and find a new way to thrive. They are able to act faster than the competition and gain new revenue streams because they see the opportunity available to them. To be in a position to do this, they need talent acquisition professionals and a hiring process that can keep pace with their ambitions. This is proving very challenging for HR professionals and leaders, and it is a struggle to scale talent in line with company objectives.

The talent is out there but it is getting them in the door that is the challenge. Potential employees are comparing what you’re offering to what else is out there in the market in terms of competition and better offers. It is not always about salary but rather more about a job that suits their lifestyle a little better. When this happens in large numbers, or across specific specialized roles, it can become a major headache for your recruiting strategies. HR leaders are reporting to leadership teams that they are unable to secure the right qualified candidates for the right roles, that offers are being turned down or that people accept offers and then change their mind because they are poached by a company with a better or more suitable offer for them.

Every company wants to grow, and some companies choose a negative world event, such as a pandemic, to double down on talent acquisition believing it is the best thing to do for their long-term growth objectives. So, they create a mandate for HR to hire quickly and efficiently, the response they are receiving is that there is a roadblock to such talent acquisition and scaling, which is the hugely challenging environment out there for HR professionals in the talent acquisition space.

Expect the volatility to continue

The full ramifications of the pandemic are not yet 100% clear, and it will be another few years before we see how all of this plays out. But right now, there has been a clear shift in power towards the employee, they have more options and choices available to them and they’re in a stronger position to dictate terms throughout the recruiting process. The world has opened up to job seekers on a global level, meaning that they can apply for jobs in countries thousands of miles away and offer to deliver their duties remotely. Due to the competitive nature of the hiring environment, companies are willing to accept this in order to get the right candidate. HR leaders are now feeling the pressure from the departments who are short staffed and under pressure, demanding that their hiring quality and speed of acquisition improve.

But it is simply a volatile market out there in terms of talent acquisition and this is likely to continue to be the case for the next few years. It is not only volatile in terms of talent acquisition, but also very difficult to hold on to qualified and experienced staff that you currently have, they are no different from new entrants in the market in terms of wanting a different lifestyle. They are witnessing many of their colleagues and peers leaving roles to work elsewhere for companies that offer employment that suits their lifestyle better.

One of the biggest challenges for HR is that there is no clear road map out of this volatility, the modern labor force has never experienced a pandemic before and has never experienced such a change in the working culture and candidate experience. The shift to remote working was rapid and widespread, there was no rulebook and HR teams are now tasked with coming up with solutions to solve talent acquisition and retention issues being experienced at companies all around the world.

The answer is yes, it is clearly the most challenging time for talent acquisition.


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