The June Bureau of Labor Statistics Jobs Report had some promising details, like 850,000 jobs added to the economy — the biggest gain we’ve seen in the last ten months — and a quarter of the new jobs added were in restaurants and bars, a promising sign of continued economic resurgence.
However, these positive revelations were balanced with a dose of troubling facts — like employers around the country, especially restaurant owners, have seen a huge hit to retention, and with high turnover rates comes increasingly difficult working conditions for remaining staff members, creating a vicious cycle. Additionally, despite adding nearly a million new jobs to the market in June (combined with the more than half a million added in May) the unemployment rate actually increased from 5.8% to 5.9%.
This is due in part to a small number of individuals reentering the job search process. We also saw the number of job leavers — those that quit or voluntarily left their jobs — rise by 164,000. While this in theory increases the applicant pool, we’re still seeing employers across the country struggling to fill their open positions as the economy rebounds and more customers are coming through the doors, a frustrating reality for companies trying to regain footing after a year and a half of uncertainty.
And lastly, the workforce participation rate has remained stagnant over the last several months at about 61.6% — down from the more than 63% prior to the pandemic. Some of the factors preventing people from rejoining the workforce and taking the nearly 1.5 million jobs created in the past two months include childcare responsibilities, health concerns as the delta variant continues to spread, Baby Boomers opting for early retirement, and a misalignment between what employers are offering and what job seekers need.
In summary, the June BLS report has solidified what you as employers already know — we’re facing a hiring crisis that’s making finding talent feel impossible.
But, we’re here to tell you — it’s not.
And the proof is in our data: Hireology customers experienced the best month of the year in terms of job growth. Our customers opened nearly 24,000 jobs and drove nearly 400,000 applicants. We helped them fill nearly 12,500 open roles — a 25% increase from May’s hires.
And on average, it took our customers 23 days to make a hire, proving that folks are able to find talent and move them through the process fast. So if you’re not doing everything you can to set yourself up to move quickly you’re missing out on top talent — likely to your competitors.
Here’s what it takes to hire talent right now in the Applicant Economy we’re in.
And check out our CEO’s quick digestible recap video below.
Pay attention to applicant and employee desires
Are you paying attention to what job seekers expect from their employer, or to internal feedback from your current staff on what’s missing from your company? If not, you’re essentially driving away talent.
Hireology recently surveyed nearly 5,000 applicants about their expectations throughout the hiring process and how the pandemic has changed their perceptions and desires (keep an eye out for it in the next few weeks). Some of the main areas that respondents now view in a more negative light include work-life balance, job security, connection to coworkers, motivation, and a sense of loyalty to their employer.
Each of these areas are within your control, and it’s important to shift this perspective as much as possible.
You can do this in a few ways:
First, highlight your employer brand and showcase your culture across your careers page and social media through employee testimonials, images of staff gatherings and events, awards, and anything else that differentiates you from your competition.
Additionally, make sure your compensation packages are competitive. In response to the current hiring crisis, wages are rising across the board as employers try to attract candidates to their open positions. For example, hourly wages among private-sector workers rose 3.6% from a year earlier. So while pay isn’t the only factor that can attract new talent, it’s definitely a big one.
Lastly, offer flexibility through work from home arrangements, paid time off, paid sick days, and career growth opportunities and autonomy. This is another huge reason individuals are seeking new employment opportunities, so address how you’re accommodating your staff if you want to attract new employees, as well as keep your old ones around.
Make your differentiating factors known
Everything listed above falls under this category, but you also need to address anything and everything that makes applying for your open role worth it to your applicants. The economy at the moment is heavily tilted toward the job seeker, so they’re likely doing their due diligence to research what makes your company worth working for.
Everything from the length of your applications to the speed of your hiring process will be scrutinized, so tighten up where necessary, and promote exciting opportunities like career path possibilities, signing bonuses you’re running, and even the technology you use on a daily basis. These all demonstrate a forward-thinking environment, so advertise them accordingly.
Turn your employees into recruiters
Your current team is your best source for finding quality applicants. Employee referrals generate the best return on investment, reduce cost per hire, and are 3-4 times more likely to be hired than non-referral candidates. So don’t let this extremely effective applicant sourcing channel lay idle. If you’ve not created an employee referral program, you should get started ASAP.
It’s as simple as laying out guidelines for rewards — Hireology offers tiered bonuses for different positions that are partially paid out on the new hire’s first day, followed by a second payment after the employee completes their first six months. This gives both the referral and the referrer reason to stay put, and encourages quality leads to come through.
And make sure you’re giving your employees an easy avenue to refer their friends and peers, as well as a nudge ever so often to encourage a consistent talent pipeline.
Use tech to your advantage
Everything at this moment is about speed. The faster you can get your open roles posted across multiple job boards, the more opportunity you’ll have to snag top talent. The faster you can move talent through your hiring pipeline, the faster you can get them started in their new position. And the faster you can onboard your new employees, the faster they’ll start making a difference to your bottom line.
The quickest and easiest way to speed up your hiring process is to remove the manual attributes. Hireology offers an all-in-one platform that automates hiring and dramatically increases the speed at which you can hire your team with career site assistance, in-platform communication, and actionable insights that help you ensure efficiency throughout your process.
The imbalance of labor supply and demand has been a trend for a few months now, but we’re reaching a point where the hiring situation is worse than it’s been in 20 years. With each passing month, hiring only gets more and more challenging.
It’s no longer a time of consideration — everything you do has to be done with urgency, because day by day, the hiring situation becomes more dire. You have to act now if you want to secure top talent — that means making changes to what you offer employees, making your differentiators known, enlisting your staff as recruiters, and investing in tech that will speed up your hiring process, should all be started today. There’s no time to waste, and we’re ready to help you transform your hiring process right now. Schedule a one-on-one consultation with us and we’ll show you how.