Hiring suitable candidates has always required hard work and vigilance, but the current job market has made this process even more challenging. While hiring managers have seen difficult times in the past, succeeding at talent acquisition in 2022 will undoubtedly require nimble thinking and responsive action.
Acknowledging that hard times may be ahead, however, is a major part of the solution. This realization opens the door to proactive steps to improve recruitment. The pandemic, inflation and many other issues will make talent acquisition in 2022 a tough endeavor. By understanding what you’re up against, though, you can improve your organizational success.
An Unprecedented Job Market
If you’re having trouble hiring new talent, you already know we’re dealing with an unprecedented job market. Inflation not seen in decades, a pandemic, and the mass job abdication known as the Great Resignation could cause issues independently. When they occur simultaneously, the real problems begin.
Many people were forced from the job market when the pandemic hit. But as businesses began to reopen, they ran into an obstacle with talent acquisition. Countless individuals found new income streams, and with so many companies hiring, job seekers also had a variety of options. This made it even trickier to attract and retain great talent.
Even worse, one recent survey found that 95% of the workforce is actively considering quitting. The appeal of higher-paying jobs is simply too much for some people. And while inflation will eventually correct, the combination of selective workers, more competition and better options has likely permanently altered the employment landscape.
Improving talent acquisition in 2022: Hiring Priorities and Challenges
While improving retention is an essential aspect of running a successful company, so is talent acquisition. Most organizations realize this and share similar priorities, but many face the same roadblocks as well. Recognizing these priorities and challenges is a necessary component of succeeding in the current labor market.
- • Attracting top talent
• Making candidates feel safe with onsite work
• Managing virtual onboarding and recruiting
• Improving candidates’ hiring-process experience
• Integrating technology to streamline the hiring process
- • Smaller HR teams make meaningful interactions difficult
• Many applicants simply don’t have the necessary qualifications
• Internal recruiting capabilities were diminished over the past two years
• Top-quality candidates often have competing offers
These points likely already hit home for many hiring managers; most organizations are coping with some combination of these hiring priorities and challenges. While this may make some feel better — they’re not alone in their struggles — it also means they’ll have a more difficult time with talent acquisition in 2022. Many of these companies are competing with each other more fiercely than ever before for the same candidates.
What Job Candidates Want
Since organizations are often trying to attract the same candidates, it’s important to be as appealing as possible to job seekers. Quality applicants are calling the shots, and when they accept a position they’re often in the best circumstances to negotiate and demand higher compensation in their offers. This doesn’t mean hiring has to be painful, but there are a few needs you should focus on meeting:
Security: Talent acquisition in 2022 must focus on security. People want to know they won’t be out of a job in a year, and they also want to know you’re taking their health seriously.
Flexibility: Workers found a new measure of flexibility during the pandemic (e.g., flexible hours, work environment, etc.), and they’re unlikely to give it up.
- Culture: A clear organizational culture can unify employees and overcome barriers of ambiguity. This is a benefit for both workers and companies.
Education/Training Opportunities: Employees want to excel at what they do. Doing so provides a sense of purpose. You can offer this by creating continued training and education options.
Opportunity for Advancement: One of the most significant retention issues, according to workers, is that employees don’t see advancement opportunities. No one wants a stagnant career.
Shared Values: This will be an issue with talent acquisition in 2022 and years to come. Employees want organizations that share their values. Make your values clear from the start.
Everyone who works in recruitment and hiring is living in a new world. It may feel disorienting, but it is also ripe with possibilities for job candidates and companies alike. If you pay attention to what candidates are looking for and take it seriously, you’ll attract higher-quality applicants and improve the chances of retaining them.
Talent Acquisition and the Need for Speed
There are many ways to excel at talent acquisition in 2022, but speeding up the hiring process deserves its own section. Did you know that over 60% of professionals lose interest in a position if they don’t hear back within 10 business days? This statistic has likely worsened now that candidates have so many possibilities in the labor market.
On top of that, drawn-out interview processes can damage your organization’s reputation. Over one-quarter of job applicants say they’d leave a negative review for a company if they felt they were strung along during the interview and hiring process. This could dissuade quality candidates from even applying with your company.
For these reasons and more, it’s imperative to make an upfront time investment in hiring. By the time you schedule a third interview, a competitor may have already swooped in with an offer. While this initial commitment may be more time-consuming than you’re used to, it will be a vital aspect of talent acquisition in 2022 and for years to come.
Strategies to Improve Talent Acquisition
With 2022 on the horizon, it’s time to turn all these considerations into actionable steps:
Shorten time-to-hire: Qualified job candidates often have multiple offers and move quickly. To win the best candidates and maintain your workflow, it’s critical to act with haste.
Improve the value of limited time: Since time is limited, make the most of it. Consider the following as applicable:
• Know precisely what you’re looking for and what you can offer, not just a range of skills and salary levels
• Do your homework on every candidate promptly
• Focus on more than just skills
• Provide a sample assignment or case study
• Make the most of the interview process by limiting the number of interviews but involving more decision-makers in each meeting.
• Listen to the candidate to understand their key drivers
- Be transparent: A lack of transparency may land a quality candidate, but they know there are openings elsewhere if the truth doesn’t align with the hiring process.
- Stress importance of culture and retention: Be intentional about retention. Candidates want to know how seriously you take culture and retention. Share your policies and focus on these matters.
- Reduce commuting: Make time in the office valuable and allow for independent work to be done remotely.
- Invest in COVID safety: Show candidates that you’ve taken active steps to protect their health in the office.
Don’t Wait to Improve Your Talent Acquisition Strategy
While the job market is always in flux, the cumulative effects of the pandemic, the Great Resignation and inflation have created a perfect storm for hiring managers.
There are far more open positions than job seekers, and finding qualified candidates has become perhaps more difficult than ever before. This is why it’s crucial to act with urgency when seeking talent for your organization.
The Voice of Talent: Return to the Office Report
Procom recently surveyed over 1,000 knowledge workers to discover how and where they prefer to work as offices re-open across North America.
The Voice of Talent Report offers actionable insights into what workers expect in relation to mandatory vaccinations, remote work preferences, The Great Resignation, COVID-19 safety measures and more.
Access your complimentary copy to discover how to attract talent in 2022: