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Why is it important to future-proof your business and plan ahead for your hiring strategy?

Kate Allen, Managing Director, Allen Associates

Although the future of the jobs market can be hard to predict, there’s one thing that we can be certain about. In today’s fast-paced world, change is to be expected, and it’s recognising this that allows businesses to take a forward-thinking approach to hiring strategies.

A global survey by Manpower Group found that, more than ever, Employers are struggling to fill job vacancies, with 67 per cent of large organisations reporting skills shortages in 2018. The report showed that, worldwide, talent shortfalls have reached a 12-year high, with nearly one third of companies saying that they were unable to fill roles due to a lack of Candidates.

In the UK, we know that employment is at a record high creating a war for talent amongst Employers who are vying to attract the best people for their business – and being unable to source workers with the right skillset can cost, leading to increased workloads for existing staff, difficulties meeting objectives for customers and loss of business to competitors.

To say that people are a business’s most important attribute is not just a cliché. In fact, high performers are 400 per cent more productive than the average worker. A quick look at the current jobs market shows why it has become so important to futureproof your business and plan ahead for your hiring strategy. Attracting and retaining top talent can make a big difference in the competitive world of business.

To do this, Employers should put talent management at the top of their agenda, dedicating time to a thorough gap analysis. Being able to identify the current level of skills within your company and list attributes which are missing can help inform the way in which you conduct in-house training and choose new Employees.

Above all, recruitment teams should work with business leaders to create a strong strategic business plan. This should recognise the importance of attracting and retaining talent and be reviewed on a regular basis. Building a culture which recognises the need for succession planning, as well as the importance of Employee engagement will enable you to identify and develop new leaders, as well as retain experienced staff who add real value to the organisation.

While we can make predications, in reality, nobody knows what the job market will look like in ten years’ time. You just have to look at the rise of technological innovation to see how this has affected job roles. Within our marketing division for example, we are now advertising for social media managers, digital marketers and data analysts – positions which simply weren’t available ten years ago.

And while demand for digitally skilled positions is increasing, others are at risk. According to the OECD, ten per cent of workers in the UK are at risk of having their roles automated, which means that businesses will need to help Employees upskill and reskill. Again, by regularly reviewing your hiring strategies, you can make sure you have the right roles and skills in mind – given the fast-paced nature of the business, annual reviews simply aren’t enough.

No industry is alone in facing these changes. In recruitment, we’re seeing our fair share of change. To stand out in a competitive market, agencies are adapting to using new technologies which enhance the Candidate experience, from video interviewing to Applicant Tracking Systems and chatbots. At Allen Associates, we’re proud of our hard-working staff and continually review our offering to Employees, including salaries, bonuses and benefits to make sure that we attract the best talent out there. To move your business forwards, you need a great team behind you. So, take time to reflect on who you’ll need to bring onboard and how you can encourage them to work for you.

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