The pandemic has created challenges that brought about new ways of doing business for many industries. The recruiting industry? It was no exemption.
Before, finding talented candidates to fill open positions is already challenging. Now, on top of this intrinsic recruitment concern, recruiters have to deal with the changing ways they interact with clients, interview candidates, and onboard new hires, among many others.
Here's a closer look at six common challenges that recruiters are currently facing and some recommendations on how to overcome them.
We are not hiring right now.
Many companies have struggled to operate by either maintaining their current staff or downsizing their workforce. Their need for a recruiter is non-existent, and they do not know when or if they will need a recruiter or recruitment services anytime soon.
Five industries are seeing more closures and hiring freezes now compared with others: These are hotels, bars, and restaurants; travel and tourism; trade shows; entertainment and conference venues; and manufacturing.
While recruiters cannot do much to put life back to these businesses, they should maintain a relationship with companies' human resources (HR). When companies in these industries reopen, they will be the HR's top of mind when getting help to fill open positions.
Job recruiters are working away from the office, too.
Not only those from the corporate world are working from home or remotely, but job recruiters as well. Like other companies, recruiting agencies have asked their employees to work from home offices to minimize COVID-19 exposure.
As a result, many recruiters are either alternating time in the office with other staff or are working from home exclusively. The new normal setup has been quite challenging as job recruiters' work with their teammates flows better seamlessly through in-person interactions.
Today, collaboration tools and other virtual platforms have become the immediate solution for those working together from home offices. While it is almost hard to envision going back to "normal," many recruiters realize the importance of shifting their ways of working to digital, not just for the medium-term but also for the long run.
No one wants to go back to work yet.
Surprisingly, amid unemployment, recruiters are faced with a major recruiting challenge: Some of those who were laid off do not want to re-join the workforce even with available job opportunities.
How did this happen? Well, from stimulus packages and unemployment check compensation to fewer entertainment and childcare expenses, people are finding that it makes sense not to go back to work. According to the Center for Research on the Wisconsin Economy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, 40% of those collecting unemployment benefits during the pandemic made more money than their previous jobs.
While this is a win-win situation for many individuals and families, it is unfavorable for recruiters who are used to having more applicants and resumes to work through. This also translates to a loss of income because they could not provide more employees to their clients.
To address this, one step job recruiters can do is secure the best package possible for prospective employees. Talent acquisition managers can entice someone to rejoin the workforce if the payoff is greater than all the unemployment benefits combined. This tactic will require working with employers and letting them know that they can have the best talents for their open posts, but they need to ensure they can provide strong offers.
Companies are migrating to web-based meetings.
Before, recruiters interviewed prospective employees in person. They were able to see how the person responded to questions, both verbally and through body language. Today, recruiting agencies have had to change the way they interview prospects by maximizing online platforms.
While video interviews present their own challenges as people tend to respond differently in this kind of setting, it is still important to make prospects feel as comfortable as possible. It would help tell the other party that you can get through it together, despite having an unconventional interview. Candidates can feel more relaxed when they realize that they are not alone in learning the curves of an online interview.
Onboarding employees has also become virtual.
Along with many companies now hiring for remote employment, a new process has come up: virtual onboarding and training. This may be uncharted waters for clients, so they might need a job recruiter's assistance to streamline the process for them. Recruiters must know how to administer all virtual platforms so that they can help clients set up the onboarding and training opportunities for new employees.
Socializing is quite a concern.
Often, recruiters get some of their best leads through social events. Since most tend to be extroverted people, job recruiters enjoy rubbing elbows and chatting with everyone. During these challenging times, managers need to find a way to keep their staff engaged and motivated to ensure that the situation is not taking a toll on their recruiting team's psychological health. Additionally, job recruiters themselves need to find ways to continue to socialize, such as through online meet-ups and virtual events.
Turning Challenges into Opportunities
At Infinity Consulting Solutions (ICS), we want to help you and your team navigate these unprecedented times. While transitioning to the "new normal" can be challenging for many recruiting teams, ICS is here to co-create solutions that companies can try out to transform their recruitment situation to a "better normal." Contact us today to get more insights into how you can find success despite the changing work environment.