Hiring through economic uncertainty

Seven Tips for Companies Hiring Through Economic Uncertainty

In Leadership Resources, Strategy Resources by Brandt A. HandleyLeave a Comment

Whether or not we are headed for a recession, the December jobs report showed a strong finish for 2022 with unemployment down to 3.5% and a 223,000 increase in nonfarm payrolls, even amid climbing interest rates and inflation that’s much higher than predicted.

So, things are weird.

Employers are feeling the strangeness of the situation with many reporting that quality candidates are difficult to find, and with 10.5 million jobs available as of last posting, that’s not at all surprising. Even though the number of available jobs is expected to cool this year, employers are still expecting a tough hiring environment in the months–if not year–ahead.

How can you make your company stand out and attract better candidates?

We’re so glad you asked. 

  1. First of all, hire a good, experienced recruiter who has navigated difficult hiring environments before.
    This is not the time to volunteer to be a guinea pig for a recruiter who has never faced an economic downturn or an incredibly competitive hiring environment. Veteran recruiters know what to do. 
  2. Make a plan.
    This means budgeting for all the positions for which you need to hire this year and making a timeline. Note the salary ranges and when you will need to start the recruitment process. This also means that you need to decide the requirements for each position and whether or not experience can make up for a lack of a certain degree or certification. All of this should align with your DEI policy and goals. 
  3. Take a look at your benefits package and make the necessary changes.
    We know that candidates are looking far beyond a salary and are considering quality health insurance, job flexibility, opportunities for advancement, mental health support, etc.–how does your company measure up? 
  4. Be prepared to discuss how your company responded to COVID-19.
    Were there layoffs? Did higher-paid leadership accept pay cuts to keep more of their teams employed? What did the company learn? Be able to point to specific examples of changes or new policies that were made. 
  5. How’s your brand looking?
    Potential candidates vet the brand just as much as they vet the jobs they are applying for. Does your brand have a strong message and a clear vision? How is your company rated online? 
  6. Look outside the traditional hiring channels.
    This is where an excellent recruiter can come in to think creatively to get your jobs in front of more qualified eyeballs–and don’t forget to include internal candidates in your search. Leverage your employees’ networks, too–do they know someone who they would love to have on their team? 
  7. Keep it moving.
    Once you’ve picked out your top choices, keep the process moving.
    Don’t ghost anyone, communicate and respond in a timely, clear fashion, and don’t leave people wondering where they are in the process. This reflects poorly all around. 

2023 will likely be another one where lots of companies are going to be looking for high-quality candidates to fill open positions whether we enter into a recession or not.

If you are hiring in 2023 and need a solid, experienced team to help you find the best candidates, get in touch with ROI

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