As we enter the second half of 2020, the start of the yr already looks like a distant reminiscence. A lot has modified so rapidly, and one would possibly assume the priorities and challenges for staffing and recruiting companies at present are worlds aside from what they have been simply six months in the past.
Whereas there is no doubt that the panorama has modified dramatically, the trade remains to be all about individuals. In that sense, lots of the core challenges, priorities, and pathways to success stay unchanged.
To find out the total influence of the COVID-19 disaster on staffing and recruiting professionals, in addition to their outlooks going ahead, Bullhorn surveyed greater than 800 professionals on the finish of Could. Listed here are among the high findings.
The Monetary Impression of COVID-19 on Staffing
It is clear that COVID-19 has dramatically altered the trade, however precisely how have its results manifested? Understandably, a lot of the dialog has centered on the monetary ramifications for the trade and the financial system as an entire. Whereas our findings actually replicate financial hardship, a large variety of additionally expressed some optimism in regards to the future.
First, the great — and maybe shocking — information: practically one-third of staffing and recruiting professionals report that enterprise efficiency has improved or remained the identical in comparison with this time final yr.
The unhealthy information: 28 p.c of reported a extreme dip in efficiency, with income decreases of not less than 30 p.c. Naturally, the staffing trade accommodates a wide range of companies, and the kind of staffing enterprise, sectors of specialization, and area all contributed to efficiency over this time. Companies specializing in hospitality and journey have been hit notably arduous, with 45 p.c reporting extreme losses. In regard to staffing sort, everlasting staffing businesses have been way more seemingly than their contract and short-term staffing counterparts to report a significant lower in enterprise (42 p.c in comparison with 24 p.c).
Staffing Companies Hit Arduous by Layoffs and Furloughs
Staffing firms, like many different companies, have needed to scale back their inner workforces because of COVID-19. The truth is, nearly half of all staffing companies have performed layoffs.
Curiously, everlasting placement businesses are the more than likely to have retained all employees (49 p.c, in comparison with 40 p.c of temp and contract businesses), though they’re additionally the more than likely to have seen a lower in efficiency.
In fact, firm dimension additionally performs a job. The smallest companies (1-10 salespeople and recruiters mixed) have been twice as seemingly (54 p.c) to retain their whole crew than the biggest companies (28 p.c).
On a worldwide scale, UK companies represented a stark distinction to their worldwide friends: 82 p.c of UK companies laid off not less than a few of their workforce. In North America, by comparability, 46 p.c of companies have laid off or furloughed workers.
Priorities and Challenges: What Has Modified and What Hasn’t
At the start of the yr, Bullhorn surveyed greater than 2,000 staffing professionals to find their high priorities and challenges for the yr forward. Predictably, a lot of these priorities have shifted. For instance, 77 p.c of cited the expertise scarcity as their high hiring problem originally of the yr, making it the highest problem by a landslide. Now, it does not register as a high problem in any respect.
Whereas staffing firms might face new challenges, their high priorities have barely budged. At its core, the staffing trade is about relationships — with candidates, purchasers, and friends — and people relationships nonetheless decide staffing success. Going into 2020, staffing professionals stated that managing candidate and shopper relationships have been the highest areas they wanted to give attention to, they usually stay high priorities now. The largest shift: Candidate and shopper relationships have swapped locations as the highest two priorities for staffing firms. Shopper relationships are actually the No. 1 precedence, with 45 p.c of citing it as a high focus for the rest of the yr.
Candidate relationships, the No. 2 precedence for the rest of the yr, are nonetheless important to staffing enterprise success. Whereas unemployment has diminished or erased the expertise shortages in lots of markets and recruiters have needed to change their outreach methods accordingly, candidates are nonetheless on the coronary heart of any staffing enterprise.
Controlling spend36 p.c) and optimizing distant work (34 p.c) are actually high of thoughts for, whereas neither objective registered as a high precedence going into the yr. One-fifth of additionally reported reassessing their enterprise fashions. Companies are entertaining quite a few choices in relation to reimagining their companies, from serving new sectors to altering up their service choices. Particularly, businesses have reported a rising demand for consultancy providers as employers look to staffing businesses for steering in navigating the present panorama.
Trying Ahead: Staffing Companies Say the Worst Is Behind Us
The moved previous of the bulk imagine we have moved previous the height of COVID-19’s financial disruption and that the financial system will enhance this yr. Roughly one-quarter of anticipate issues to select up within the subsequent three months. Enterprise efficiency in the course of the pandemic had no influence on this outlook: Respondents who’ve seen an enchancment in income and people who have been hit the toughest have been equally prone to anticipate the financial system to enhance. Notably, only a few predict a sustained recession or despair. Simply 9 p.c anticipate the restoration course of to begin within the second half of 2021 or later.
Companies are responding to the brand new panorama by investing in and using recruitment know-how, in each predictable and fewer apparent methods. Unsurprisingly, video interviewing and videoconferencing options have seen the biggest spikes in exercise, with a near-universal (91 p.c) adoption uptick by staffing and recruitment firms. Videoconferencing additionally falls into a bigger pattern: Companies are more and more leveraging instruments that facilitate communication and relationship-building with candidates, purchasers, and inner groups. VoIP (25 p.c) and SMS (24 p.c) replicate this new emphasis on versatile modes of communication.
The opposite know-how options to see growing adoption might replicate a must make higher use of restricted sources. Greater than 1 / 4 of businesses have ramped up their use of analytics for the reason that rise of COVID-19, to higher perceive their efficiency and make sensible choices about the place to take a position future sources. Respondents additionally reported a rise in the usage of automation and synthetic intelligence. With a thinner margin for error than up to now, automating time-consuming handbook duties to release sources has by no means been extra necessary.
What lies forward for staffing and recruiting firms? We’re cautiously optimistic that we’re observing a gradual incline towards normalcy for the trade. As companies reopen, we’ll regulate key elements that influence trade efficiency. How will reopening influence the financial system total and staffing companies particularly? With the amount of recent instances various dramatically from state to state and nation to nation, will the area play a much bigger function in enterprise efficiency? It is robust to say proper now, however we’ll proceed to observe the state of affairs carefully.
Bob McHugh is the senior content material advertising supervisor at Bullhorn.