Hiring the right person for the job is crucial – but HR tend to feel forced into sacrificing skills in order to fill vacant job roles.
Recent studies have made us all aware that the UK is suffering from a massive talent shortage. A total of 91% of businesses in the UK, reportedly struggled to find workers with the right skills over the past 12 months. With IT being the most in-demand skills set across industries, but skills in engineering, marketing, and finance are in high demand too.
Consequently, many businesses have been forced to give up on finding appropriate talent, choosing either to hire at a lower level than intended or to leave the role vacant.
Our research shows that over a quarter of businesses in the UK prioritise cost over quality of hire. But businesses suffer from the lower quality of new hires.
In addition, we found that just 8% of employers feel that new hires demonstrate the right skillsets to complete their roles, and that a staggering 1 in 3 new hires fails to make it through their six months probation period, costing businesses around £23k.
Not only is hiring lesser skilled people expensive for companies, but it also serves to slow down the business’ productivity, harming overall competitiveness.
Some businesses solve this problem by stealing talent directly from their competitors, which drives up salaries. In fact, two-thirds of business leaders were obliged to increase the salary on offer last year – with the risk of them leaving the company in a year for a better offer.
Neither of these solutions is sustainable in the long-run.
So what to do, when the traditional routes to finding candidates that were once effective are now paved with challenges and mismatches? As per usual, tech is the answer.
Embracing new technology, such as recruitment platforms powered by algorithms, AI and Machine Learning, is the key to solving the talent crisis.
The right recruitment tech can automate CVs and applications to find the very best fit for the job with the required skills needed in a matter of seconds, ensuring that it’s impossible to fill a role for the sake of filling it with the wrong candidate for the job.
Recruitment tech is also able to cast a wider net, bringing attention to people who employers might not have considered or who may not even be looking for work, such as freelance workers.
While there is a talent shortage in the traditional workforce, the freelance workforce, consisting of freelancers, independent consultants, and contractors, is blossoming.
Since 2009, the freelance economy in the UK has grown by 25% and generates an estimated £109bn a year. The freelance workforce now account for around 15% of the working population in the UK
That’s why more companies than ever are now using freelance workers to meet demand. As many as 87% of UK employers intend to increase or maintain their use of flexible workers in the next three months.
The old paradigm of employers focusing on predictable job roles is giving way to project work, which lends itself to hiring flexible workers on a project basis. Increasingly, jobs may become replaced by projects, which is giving rise to the flexible workforce whose members rapidly assemble and reassemble around projects, challenges and goals rather than jobs.
This is great news for HR. Having more qualified candidates to choose of from the beginning shortens the recruitment process, enabling managers to dedicate more time to analysing HR data and improve strategic planning.
It also provides businesses with added flexibility and agility, which is crucial in an ever-changing business environment.
However, changing the recruitment methods takes more than simply adopting the tech. It needs a shift in mindset. It’s about shaking off conventional thinking, and departing from traditional routes – rethink how you fish for talent.
Recruitment technologies can help you solve the talent crisis and supply you with the skills you need to compete in today’s business environment. It’s up to you if you want to be a front runner or a laggard.