Jun 4

So How Did You Like the Full Employment Economy?

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So there we were right smack dab in the middle of a full employment economy, perhaps for the first time since employment or unemployment data has been tracked. So guess what, along comes COVID19 and suddenly there are millions of job seekers, and the full employment economy has disappeared. As the Business Leader of RCSN Leadership Services, the Strategy for Great Leaders, I have to tell you I really didn’t like a full employment economy. What about you? Were you a Human Resources, Talent Acquisition or Staffing professional who came to work each day only to find you had more positions to fill not less? Your challenge was to manage your current workload, while at the same time stepping up and identifying candidates for additional positions.

The BIG question is what can we do about it the next time there’s a full employment economy?
I talk to employers who are seeking people for hourly positions paying $13 to $15.00 per hour. They tell me their employees will leave for 25 to 50 cents more per hour. Some of those employers are offering solid benefits to go with their competitive hourly rates of pay. In spite of their efforts it doesn’t make a difference they still experience turnover they want to turn off. Other Clients tell me they cannot find the technical employees they need. Engineers of any type and IT professionals who are nowhere to be found. Post the position on six job boards and wait for the responses that don’t follow. Cold call fifty (50) passive candidates and have two (2) calls returned. What about non-technical positions? Surely you can find candidates for those positions. Yes, you can find people, but guess what they aren’t the stars or solid performers you used to be able to find when the economy was less than full. So what to do? What are the solutions? Are there solutions?

In all truth and no fairy tales for some employers there are solutions, while for others solutions are far and few between. So you ask, then what should I do or what can I do? From this Search Consultants point of view, the solutions begin with fundamentals. The most basic fundamental question is “Who are you selling?” Who is the employer for whom you’re seeking people? What do you have to sell to potential employees as you evaluate, study and examine the employer you have to sell? It all begins with figuring out how to take the employer you represent to the employment marketplace and sell that employer to job seekers. Oh, by the way, this is just the first step and it is without a doubt a giant hurdle for some employers to jump over. If you can figure out how to jump over the “Marketing Your Employer” hurdle with success you’re one third of the way home. There are still some additional giant steps to take before you can begin to identify candidates for positions in a full employment economy. “Marketing Your Employer” is just the beginning of the story about how to hire in a “full employment economy.” Stay tuned. The discussion will continue in the future.

Paul Wehner
Senior Partner
RCSN Leadership Services