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Overcoming The Labor Shortage Challenge

Posted on:  April 19, 2022

Today’s business leaders are facing struggles across the board – inflation, supply chain disruptions, and the ever-present labor shortage. In the wake of the pandemic, employers are struggling, with increasing frustration, to find workers.

It’s been called the “Great Resignation”, a phenomenon of contributing factors, such as a surge in retirements, a shortage of affordable childcare, and the reevaluation that many people are making of the role of work in their overall lives.

According to Pew Research, the pandemic boosted retirements by one million workers. And according to McKinsey, another two million women are estimated to have stopped working. Workforce participation is at its lowest level since the 1970’s.

These challenges have created an environment where people in the workforce have more opportunity than ever to shop around for a job with greater pay, flexibility, and growth. Experts predict it will be a continued challenge for U.S. employers to find workers in the foreseeable future. And retain them.

Tips To Bolster Recruitment & Retention

People are a company’s greatest asset. Therefore, it’s important to create a culture that enables employees to feel valued and supported. Encouraging such a goal is the fact that Gen Z and Millennials now make up 46% of the full-time U.S. workforce. Because of their sheer numbers, Gallup asked what they look for most in an employer, and their answers were very similar – the desire to have an employer who cares about their well-being as the top priority. In addition to financial well-being, Gallup identified career, social, community, and physical well-being as key components.

In light of today’s unique challenges, here are some helpful ways for organizations to bolster their recruitment and retention efforts:

  • Create ample opportunities to recognize employees.
  • Focus on transparency from top to bottom, as the majority of today’s workforce places a great deal of emphasis on open communication.
  • Have an accessible and free environment for employees to make constructive suggestions.
  • Offer flexibility for employees to work remotely. Post pandemic, more employees than ever want flexible work arrangements, including flexible work hours. If you’re not a remote company, try rewarding flexible work-from-home arrangements with top employees who have earned it.
  • Be creative about employee benefits, which include not only competitive wages but also “soft” benefits such as more vacation opportunities.
  • Provide more options for growth, including training and career advancement.
  • Invest in technology that removes the tedium associated with many positions. This will make employees feel more fulfilled in what they do and maximize their contribution.
  • Ensure that there is an engaging management style across all departments.
  • Make sure every employee understands their role as well as the expected results e.g., what successes looks like within the organization.
  • Celebrate successes.

Why Technology Matters

Finding and retaining the right people is obviously important, especially in today’s contracted and competitive environment. Yet organizations will want to make sure they leverage appropriate technology solutions in order to maximize not only human contribution but also to increase profitability.

For instance, consider the now imperative task of financial planning. With inflation at an historic high and showing little sign of abating, supply chain constraints (made worse by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and further COVID lockdowns in China), and the Fed’s promise of multiple rate increases, it’s essential that companies are able to provide accurate forecasts.

The right budgeting technology – such as Synoptix – can mean the difference between being able to support the costs of employment and retention programs or making it impossible to survive in a hyper competitive labor market. Therefore, it’s critical to focus as much on proper planning as on recruitment and retention. But combined, they can provide a huge competitive advantage for an organization over rivals.

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