You’ve likely read recent headlines in the news about labor shortages and hiring challenges that businesses face across the country. Economists and others are sifting through the data to understand the reasons behind the labor shortage (pandemic-induced fears, lack of childcare and changes to federal aid, etc.) and how this is affecting the current hiring landscape.
Whether you’re simply up-to-date on current events or have experienced the changing labor and hiring scene firsthand, you know that it’s more competitive and expensive than ever to find, hire and keep the right employees. While these “talent wars” and echoes of a “great resignation” might be discouraging for businesses of all sizes, it’s also an opportunity to rethink your company’s hiring and retention strategies for both short-term recovery and long-term success.
Here are four actionable steps to get started:
There’s no doubt that the pandemic has changed the way people think about work-life balance. Businesses that offer flexible work environments, such as the hybrid work model, are trendy right now. Many employees appreciate the freedom to choose whether they want to work remotely or in the physical office based on workload, productivity, convenience, childcare, commute and other factors. Oh, and speaking of childcare, many working parents and guardians require the flexibility of hybrid work models during this time when daycare and school schedules are up in the air.
With that being said, there are jobs that cannot be done remotely. Businesses that aren’t compatible with hybrid work models can find other creative ways to offer flexibility: job sharing, rethinking work assignments, different hours, etc.
For various reasons, an increasing number of people are currently reluctant to return to or remain in the workforce, which means that businesses of all sizes are competing to offer the most enticing jobs to potential and current employees. Many companies boost wages or offer signing bonuses, but there are other less obvious strategies to incentivize employees to work for your business.
Here are some other perks to consider beyond offering higher base pay:
3. Treasure hunt for top talent
We touched on the so-called “talent wars” that have resulted from the labor shortage and competitive hiring landscape. To find and score top talent for your business, you likely lean on an HR specialist, either internally or your HR consultant. Right now is an excellent time for HR pros to hunt for talent outside of their usual spheres— and also where others in your industry may not be searching. Doing this might look like utilizing different technologies, but it could also mean re-evaluating job descriptions and qualifications. Can you adjust anywhere to bring in a fresh perspective or someone with transferable skills?
If you’re still not catching any fish in the employee pool, consider hiring a professional recruiter to help scout talent. Also, don’t be afraid to ask your employees for hiring help! Businesses can often incentivize existing employees to bring on strong teammates through their own personal and professional connections.
We saved the best for last! Creating a safe, welcoming and inclusive workplace culture is one of the top ways businesses can find, hire and keep employees. In our collective reimagining of what workplaces should look like and how they should function, there is a spotlight on company culture and values that simply wasn’t there before. The younger generations in the workforce (we’re looking at you, millennials and Gen Z!) tend to work for businesses that most closely align with their values. There is an emphasis on diversity, equity and inclusion efforts across the board, as well as employee engagement efforts and perks that go beyond flex Fridays or happy hours.
At Rockland Trust, we understand that the future of work is evolving and businesses of all sizes are adapting to changes in the landscape. Our Learning Center offers helpful tips and resources for business owners, and our expert business bankers can help you with any financial needs.
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