What does the future of talent acquisition look like?

The last few years have been testing as the pandemic initiated a chain reaction of challenges in the staffing industry. Inflation reached record highs, the demand-supply balance went into turmoil and economic headwinds made the already tight market even more unpredictable. Today, the demand for staffing and workforce solutions remains weak. Labor shortage still prevails as a primary concern, and the Great Resignation and quiet quitting have further created huge turnovers and recruitment challenges.

Given the weak demand for staffing and changing employee expectations, what does the future of talent acquisition look like? Here are my two cents.

AI is a worthwhile investment for augmenting recruitment. AI-backed predictive analytics can help audit employee skillsets, shortlist internal candidates, fill difficult-to-fill roles and create personalized career pathways based on goals and interest areas. In fact, HR and recruiting leaders are actively determining areas where AI can be applicable. A survey by staffing firm Robert Half states that 41% of US workers believe generative AI to have a “positive impact” on their careers. Additionally, 63% of technology professionals and 54% of HR professionals said generative AI will create more demand for their skills.

Moreover, generative AI will make reskilling a norm. As per an IBM survey, business leaders say that AI and automation implementation over the next three years will require almost 40% of their workforce (roughly over 1.4 billion people) to reskill, especially for entry-level jobs.

Preferences and opportunities are changing. Employees today emphasize flexibility more than stability. For instance, many employees are leaving their full-time jobs for interim or contract-based work. Per a Korn Ferry report, the number of global interim workers will grow to 78 million in 2023. Plus, 21% of the interim workers cited flexibility as the reason for a change to contract-based work from full-time, and 26% acknowledged the move to take a break from the traditional corporate lifestyle. Interestingly, organizations plan to increase the use of contract workers in the coming years. Many employers will look at interim executives and professionals to meet scaling workforce needs, which presents a great opportunity for the staffing industry to capitalize on!

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Employees are moving around but not out. Another significant change in view is that employees are moving around the organization but not out. There is an evident internal mobility trend as employees are migrating to other functional areas within their current organizations instead of looking for new jobs. This can help employers motivate top talent, build diverse pipelines and fill open roles to meet critical needs amid stalled hiring. Investing in internal mobility, talent analytics and workforce planning can future-proof businesses.

Learning and development are crucial for retention and bridging skill gaps. The current workforce demands more personal and professional development opportunities. Per a report by Lorman, 70% of employees are likely to leave their current jobs to join a peer that invests in employee development and learning. The report adds that 87% of millennials believe that learning and development in the workplace is important. And other research suggests that 81% of the UK workforce believes learning and acquiring new knowledge or skills to be important or very important. Be it different geographical locations or age groups, ensuring learning and development opportunities can help you retain your existing employees, acquire new talent and bridge the skill gap within your organization.

Unfortunately, many organizations today are not equipped to provide the appropriate learning and development opportunities. As stated in a LinkedIn Workplace report, merely 29% of employees feel “very satisfied” with the current career advancement opportunities available within their organization.

Honesty is the best policy! Here is a fascinating insight. A survey suggests that 36% of hiring managers lie to job candidates. Seventy-five percent lie during interviews, 52% lie in job descriptions and 24% lie in the offer letter. Moreover, 40% said they did so about the role’s responsibilities, 39% about growth opportunities at the company and 38% about career development opportunities, and others lied about the company culture, benefits and company commitment to social issues. Lying to candidates undermines an organization’s integrity and can cost a business vital talent, while honesty upholds an organization’s reputation and is critical for cultivating success eventually. Workers are more likely to stay with an organization that they feel is transparent, so build a company culture based on transparency.

Sanjeev Tirath

Sanjeev Tirath
Sanjeev Tirath is co-founder and CEO of Pyramid Consulting. He can be reached at Sanjeev.Tirath (at) pyramidci (dot) com.

Sanjeev Tirath

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