The supply of employees is low, while the demand for them is high. It sounds like the perfect scenario for anyone on the job search, but on the other hand, companies are having trouble finding qualified candidates. According to NFIB’s July 2018 Jobs Report, 88 percent of owners hiring or trying to hire, reported few or no qualified applicants for the positions they were trying to fill. Meanwhile, small to mid-sized business owners are trying to figure out how to be more productive with a minimal supply of adequate labor. How can companies attract candidates in this market?
Some workers are not taking offers at other companies with high-paying positions because they will lose the benefits they receive from public assistance.
What does that tell us? People want to receive benefits from their workplace. By taking higher-paying positions, they will receive a higher salary, but not enough to be able to afford healthcare. In these cases, they will no longer qualify to receive assistance, nor will their job provide it to them. To keep their employees, some firms will need to offer positions as part-time, so they are not legally required to provide benefits. Generally, more prominent companies can provide benefits to their employees, but workers employed at smaller businesses are left behind struggling.
Since most small businesses do not have the funding to offer higher wages or benefits, Josh Wright, chief economist from iCIMS, told NBC News that “small businesses have fewer resources to throw at recruiting and training, so it’s harder for them to get the labor they need.”
The Co-Founder of Quality Logo Products, Bret Bonnett, has found it helpful for his company to offer free code camps. He also encourages students to attend open house events at the headquarters office to educate them on technological skills that would be transferable to other jobs. They would then be ready to work once they are graduated. Similarly, Michael Sims from ThinkLions, a Detroit-based startup, believes that business owners should focus on investing in employee development.
Other companies are thinking of recruiting young or partnering with local community colleges to begin the training before starting the job. Offering mentorship through internships will result in qualified candidates. With this option, students can learn new skills and potentially grow to higher positions with the company. Students can also receive school credit in return.
Getting creative with emphasizing smaller perks can go a long way. Talk to neighboring establishments to provide discounts for employees on food or fitness.
Incentive programs can be great to motivate, form some competitiveness, and reward employees on their performance.
Another option to attract employees is allowing them to work remotely. This would also be an advantage to the business needing less office space.
It may be too soon to declare full employment during this time of low employment just yet. Some people are working part-time that would like to be working full-time. Others have jobs at a place that does not make full use of their skills and abilities. The best investment a small to mid-sized company can do to attract employees in this market is investing in their employees.