Has your staffing firm seen an uptick in job orders yet?
After weeks of massive layoffs ( including 19.6 million in April alone) and a precipitous stock market drop, employment statistics and industry projections are showing glimmers of hope:
- Total non-farm employment rose by 2.5 million in May – and jumped another 4.8 million in June.
- After peaking at a record high 14.7% in April, US unemployment declined to 13.3% in May, and dropped further in June to 11.1%.
- Staffing Industry Analysts projects 11% growth in temporary staffing revenue and 19% expansion in place & search in 2021.
- Temporary help services employment increased by 39,100 in May and reported a record gain of 149,000 jobs in June, following the record loss of 841,000 jobs back in April.
Obviously, a good portion of this activity isn’t true “growth” – it simply reflects the fact that employers are re-opening their doors and calling furloughed and laid-off employees back. But demand for temporary, contract and even direct-hire workers is coming back:
- Employers need coverage for employees who have fallen ill or need to care for sick family members.
- Many people are afraid to return to work and need to be replaced.
- Employers are bringing on temporary staff to handle volatile workloads and control overhead.
- Health and safety protocols have created demand for new types of workers until the pandemic is over.
Social distancing isn’t going away anytime soon. In the meantime, you need to be resourceful to recruit effectively and find the qualified people your clients need.
Curbside and virtual job fairs are two options to consider.
One of the biggest barriers to recruiting right now is coming in for an interview. Curbside job fairs and virtual job fairs are safe, convenient alternatives to bridge social distancing gaps and connect great people to your jobs:
Curbside Job Fair 101:
A curbside job fair is similar to a traditional one – the goals are to interview job seekers, discuss employment opportunities, build your talent pool and fill orders. The primary difference is that job seekers stay in their vehicle while your recruiters, from a safe distance, greet and interview them.
Virtual Job Fair 101:
A virtual job fair leverages mobile (i.e., smartphone, tablet or computer) and video technology (via a platform like Zoom or Facebook Live) to conduct an online hiring event. Individuals looking for work can discuss their experience and work preferences your recruiters, learn about available jobs and apply to opportunities that are a great fit.
Benefits of Curbside and Virtual Job Fairs:
- Candidates can find great jobs from the comfort of their vehicle or home.
- You and job seekers can practice social distancing, and still get the advantages/insights of meeting face to face.
- These alternate job fair formats provide a competitive recruiting advantage you can promote as part of your employment brand.
Here are a few more ideas to boost your recruiting efforts during the pandemic.:
- Create a sense of urgency with potential candidates. When those expanded unemployment benefits run out, competition for great jobs will heat up. Consider creating content (blog posts, eBooks, etc.) that explains the advantages of securing a good job NOW.
- Pull back the curtain. The best way to quell job seekers’ fears about going back to work is by providing good information. Consider recording short videos of your associates on assignment, so potential candidates can see what your clients are doing to ensure their safety on the job.
- Counsel employers on pay rates. Right now, people may be collecting more on unemployment than they would if they were working. Run the numbers with clients to help them understand the realities of today’s employment market. Ask them to consider temporarily boosting pay rates, offering assignment completion bonuses or other financial incentives to convince great people to go to work for them.
- Hone your employment brand. Do you offer safe jobs? Remote jobs? High paying jobs? Are you conducting video interviews? Do you provide PPE for associates? Shout it from the rooftops. In all your job-seeker communications, position your firm as a leader in getting people back to work safely.