The idea that you shouldn’t take a second look at laid-off workers is a worn-out concept in the first place, and in today’s hiring environment, with a labor market that’s been turned upside down, it’s especially erroneous. The influx of recently unemployed workers is a consequence of the hardships the pandemic has brought to the labor market on a national—and international—scale. It is not, however, an indication of workers being unsuccessful at their jobs. Many organizations that are no longer able to afford their staffing levels have been forced to make impossible choices. As a result, the market is currently flooded with talented job seekers who were laid off purely because of fallout from COVID-19.
While the talent market is in a unique state of flux, an especially high number of talented professionals who aren’t regularly on the hunt for a job are now open to a new one or are actively searching for one. If you’re in a position to hire, now is the time to consider seeking out the available professionals in your industry. It’s important not to get complacent, however; these workers likely won’t be around for very long.
A Talent-Rich Market
Not only is the market inundated with new talent, it’s steadily continuing to expand as the percentage of employed workers open to new job opportunities increases. Despite—and in some cases, because of—uncertainty in job stability, more workers are exploring their options. If, for example, their employer is making changes they don’t like, an employee may be looking to jump ship and make a move to a new employer. And timing is key. Now is the time to get these workers on board. Many executives and other types of employees who formerly enjoyed stability and security with their positions and organizations may now be faced with the reality that the business model and priorities of the organization have to shift in order for the business to survive. They may find that the future is calling for their own exit, or simply believe that it’s the right time to move on. In either case, they’re proactively on the hunt for a career move.
Consultants whose contract roles are coming to a close are also on the search for a new opportunity. In a typical hiring environment, many of these workers would have already secured a new interim position, but due to current circumstances, many might be in limbo—a position they didn’t expect themselves to be in. These workers are a perfect fit for organizations that wish to fill immediate or predicted skills gaps, but aren’t looking to make a long-term hiring commitment at this time.
Prepare Now for Post-Pandemic Times
The way businesses operate on even basic levels has been transformed by the pandemic. Meetings are streamlined, remote working is the norm, traditional 9-to-5 hours are evolving, and communication is particularly critical. As things continue to change, the types of qualifications needed and the way workers’ roles will look is changing, too—even if some leaders can’t see it quite yet. Now is an advantageous time to be hiring and building up your team for a future that will be operating in a post-pandemic reality. Many organizations are making decisions more quickly than in the past, even in the absence of a certain future, knowing that their inaction could cause bigger issues down the road.
Get ahead of the curve and prepare for emerging skill needs. According to the Future of Jobs 2020 report by the World Economic Forum, jobs and skills will take on new shape over the next five years. The top five emerging soft skills employers will be seeking, according to the report, are analytical thinking and innovation; active learning; complex problem-solving; critical thinking and analysis; and resilience, stress tolerance, and flexibility. As candidate interests morph and job realities change, many workers are seeking new types of opportunities and looking to stretch their skill sets. This is a unique opportunity to add short-term or long-term workers to your team and train them in new and emerging skills to prepare for 2021 and beyond, since, according to the report, employers have reported difficulties when hiring for emerging roles such as data analysts and scientists, AI and machine-learning specialists, and software and application developers.
No one knows exactly what the labor market will look like, but it’s a safe bet that those companies that take steps now to shape their teams with the future in mind will be in better shape than those that don’t. You likely have, or will have, new skill needs emerge as your priorities shift amid the current climate. Examine the immediate and glaring gaps you see surfacing, and consider how you can get ahead of them now—before everyone else is clamoring to fill similar roles.
Looking to a Stronger Future
In the meantime, until you figure out what your long-term needs look like, bringing on workers on a short-term basis may be a solution that will enable you to truly examine your shortcomings and determine where you need help the most.. Finding the right talent to fill interim needs, while also starting the process of making permanent additions to your future teams, isn’t as daunting as it may appear. Having a partner in place who’s committed to intimately understanding your organization and your talent needs can give you a huge advantage in today’s uncertain hiring environment.
At Signature, we’ve always been a little “extra” when it comes to relationship building, and we’re proud of that. In an increasingly remote world, responsiveness and communication are more important than ever, and those we work with have grown to rely on our team of seasoned experts and our insider’s view of the latest technology, hiring, and industry trends. Establishing mutual trust with clients and candidates over time is an integral part of finding the best possible job fit for both parties, and our recruiters are in frequent communication with people in various stages of their job search.
Our rolling roster of highly qualified candidates is ready to hit the ground running. If a consultant we’ve worked with becomes unemployed, there’s a high probability that they’re already well acquainted with someone on the Signature team. Chances are also good that when a client approaches us about their hiring needs, we’ll immediately know someone perfect for the job, because we’ve built up strong relationships with our candidates, who we continue to nurture, regardless of their employment status. We know what they’re looking for, and we’re familiar with their strengths and fit for emerging and in-demand skills, and any areas of potential growth. Our high-touch style of communication also enables us to quickly know when someone’s job status changes or their skill set grows, which in turn helps us to seamlessly match employers with the right candidate as soon as the need arises.
Tomorrow’s future may be uncertain, but having a proactive hiring plan and a partner to lead you through the terrain will make the journey more secure, and your hiring more intuitive, flexible, and effective.
Now is the right time to be thinking about your immediate gaps and future needs, and putting the right pieces in place to fill them. Signature can help you get there. Reach out to us today to discuss your hiring needs.
We believe the future belongs to innovators and problem-solvers. It’s our job to create connections that inspire success. That’s why we’ve spent 20+ years building strong relationships and bringing together top tech talent and forward-thinking companies. Signature Consultants joined forces with DISYS to offer a more diversified portfolio of services. Through our company's IT staffing, consulting, managed solutions and direct placement services, we deploy thousands of consultants each year to support client’s tech needs across the U.S. Signature Consultants is also parent company to Hunter Hollis and Madison Gunn. Learn more at sigconsult.com.