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Top 7 Recruiting & Retention Trends to Watch in 2018

With record low unemployment rates and multiple options for employment, the war for talent continues to intensify.  The job market is very near what economists call full employment – that is, most of the unemployed workforce is in between jobs. In this environment, finding – and keeping – qualified workers is a challenge.

To remain competitive, successful employers are embracing the following seven trends:

1. Candidate experience

Top hiring managers understand that while they are interviewing the candidate, the candidate is also interviewing them. “Selling” the job opportunity – including the growth, innovation, and excitement that your organization has to offer – has become one of the most important parts of the interview process. Build a rapport with candidates (woo them) and maintain consistent communication. 

2. Shorter hiring processes

Time is the fastest way to kill a deal. Employers must be prepared to act quickly when the right candidate comes along. According to an employer survey conducted by Atterro, an affiliated sister company of Staffmark, 59 percent believe the hiring process (from first interview to job offer) should last seven days or less, and 24 percent lose interest when faced with a long hiring process.

3. Leadership training & development

Internal leadership development is crucial to success. As budgets tighten, it’s also often one of the first things to get cut. Investing in your leaders is an investment in your entire workforce. 

4. Transparency 

To become a top employer, you need to take an honest assessment of your company culture. Even if your culture isn’t where you want it to be, start working toward your goal and be open with candidates and employees. Build trust by being transparent and encouraging your employees to voice their opinions and ideas. 

5. Job perks 

In addition to standard benefits packages (medical insurance, retirement plans, etc.) employees want to feel respected and recognized with incentives and perks, including flexible schedules, bonus opportunities, training, long-term career planning, and fun company-sponsored events. 

In a talent survey conducted by Atterro, the following perks were ranked as follows:

  1. 1. Flexible work schedule or compressed work week
  2. 2. Liberal paid time off policies
  3. 3. Remote work location
  4. 4. Continuing education opportunities
  5. 5. Recognition programs
  6. 6. Paid fitness memberships

6. Artificial intelligence 

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a rising trend in the world of recruiting and is quickly moving from experimentation to expectation. It is not replacing the need for recruiters, but is instead reducing the “grunt work” and freeing recruiters to focus on interviewing and closing job offers. AI has been used to:

  • Identify the best candidates from a large applicant pool
  • Schedule interviews 
  • Communicate with candidates 
  • Measure staffing KPIs, such as quality of hire

7. Competitive Wages

With the increasing demand for company culture and employee perks, it’s easy to lose sight of the importance of competitive pay. Salary still trumps benefits. Many employers are increasing pay rates to attract and retain the qualified talent they need. 

To hit the “salary sweet spot,” follow these steps: 

  • Review salary surveys. Choose a reputable source that adjusts rates for your area. 
  • Check supply/demand reports. When demand outweighs supply, you need to adjust your job offers accordingly. 
  • Find a local expert. Partner with Staffmark to set salaries that will meet or exceed other employers in your area. 

Remember, it will likely cost more to replace a good employee than to offer the pay increase you may be hesitant to give. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, replacement costs can reach as high as 50-60% of an employee’s annual salary, with total costs associated with turnover ranging from 90-200% of annual salary.  

There you have it! Seven trends impacting employers of all types and sizes. Luckily, Staffmark is here be your resource as you plan staffing budgets, set salary levels, and build and retain an engaged workforce in 2018. To learn more about how to implement these trends or how Staffmark can address your staffing challenges, contact us today