2018 Boom or Bust for the Little Guys?

Posted: January 11, 2018 in Games, Recruiting and Sourcing, Talent Acquisition
Tags: , , , , ,

were hiring

Everyone knows if your company has a pulse you’re hiring. Job boards and social media are gushing with “We’re Hiring” notices. Now brace yourself. The demand for specialized talent is going to get a lot worse starting in 2018. And if you’re a micro-brand, you’ll want to avoid getting crushed in the stampede for new hires.

Why is 2018 a key marker? Because employers, especially the big-brands, have been handed the single largest corporate tax break in years, in an already hot job market. If you’ve been paying attention, you may have noticed top CEO’s making proclamations of sweeping pay increases and putting the pedal to the metal on their recruiting budgets. Not only that, immigration reforms continue to tighten imported labor sources and for the first time in quite a while, worldwide markets and foreign economies are surging in unison. So they’ll be working harder to retain talent inside their own borders.

As if the demand for experienced talent wasn’t already overheated, these converging factors will put even more pressure on smaller brands. Mega-corporations, sitting on record cash reserves and empowered by new tax incentives, will be funding daunting recruiting campaigns. Moreover, top candidates won’t even need to move for the best jobs, as the big brands alleviate relocation objections by creating new campuses in major cities to quickly mop up new hires. Top talent will literally be able to walk across the street for better jobs.

Besides guarding their flanks with higher salaries, perks and bonuses to try and stay competitive, how do the little guys stave off legions of new corporate recruiters and still attract the talent they will need to grow? Hire more recruiters…or a recruiter? Spend more on job postings? When everyone else is essentially doing the same and the big brands can outspend them exponentially, how are they going to gain any advantage?

First, you’ll need to clearly understand and define those strengths inherent to your business because you’re not a Goliath. People leave big companies all the time to start or join smaller companies they perceive as improving their quality of life, building exciting market niche products, living and working in smaller, more affordable communities; just to name an obvious few. Forge these strengths into a written benefits list, improve any you can and then sit down with a competent recruiting specialist who services your industry and help them to develop a novel and persistent recruiting strategy for your company. Be realistic with your recruiting budget and with the “time-to-fill” for your critical open job requisitions.

Understand that recruiting isn’t just another expense when it fuels the life blood of your company. A recruiter isn’t just some sales guy or gal you assign quotas to and expect them to pull rabbits from hats. They are your front line ambassador. Like a powerful radio station, they beam your unique message of opportunity into the world of prospective candidates every day. If they can work in close partnership with company leadership to find new pathways of engagement with the key people you want to have a conversation with, you will increase your odds for success demonstrably.

It isn’t magic. It’s being creative in developing your plan for recruiting success and relentlessly executing on it every day.

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