From the Great Resignation to the Great Rehiring: Key learnings from the Greenhouse 2021 Employer Hiring Sentiment Report

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The Great Rehiring is in full swing. In the Greenhouse platform, we’ve seen that, on average, companies are making 50% more hires per month than they were at the start of the year. We wanted to understand how businesses are thinking about hiring and the job market, so we did some research. We surveyed 1,000 C-suite executives and HR managers to learn about their plans for future hiring, what challenges they foresee in the months and years ahead, and how they plan to overcome them.

Hiring has gone into overdrive

Early on in the pandemic, many companies were forced to scale back or even pause recruitment. Today businesses are planning for the future – hiring is now a top priority for 84% of CEOs. With so much at stake, we believe “the Great Resignation” offered savvy business leaders a once-in-a-lifetime chance to reset and revamp their talent strategy.

In the coming months, 33% of new job postings will be aimed at returning staffing to pre-COVID levels after layoffs and resignations. Far more hiring will go beyond recouping lost headcount, with over 60% of jobs set for new roles and new teams as companies look to expand.

Post-pandemic, candidates want flexibility

In the post-pandemic workplace, employees are prioritizing work-life balance above all else. Flexibility is now a top-of-mind priority for candidates when assessing a company and a role, with 63% of respondents mentioning candidates seeking a flexible working schedule and 57% reporting that they want the option of hybrid or remote working, compared to only 12% who said they are looking for in-office perks.

This prioritization is most evident when compared to conversations about financial benefits, with 42% of respondents noting candidates ask about variable compensation. Meanwhile, pensions, 401Ks and retirement matching remain popular benefits according to 38% of respondents, and 20% of candidates are reported to be interested in receiving company equity.

Meeting benefit expectations plays a major part in attracting talent, while also helping to retain current employees. Over 70% of organizations plan to either increase or expand existing benefits, while 59% are looking to introduce bonus schemes and 56% are giving employees additional time off.

Despite 78% of organizations planning to increase hiring in H2 2021, almost 68% of those surveyed expect a dramatic increase in attrition during the same period, with more than half of employers (53%) saying the desire for a better work-life balance will be the primary cause of employee turnover. And 33% of survey respondents believe that employees' concerns about their companies' return-to-office plans will influence attrition rates.

Where and how to find the next generation of talent

Hiring problems can quickly become retention problems if leaders fail to build an environment of diversity and belonging that encourages candidates and employees to express their identities.

Leaders should not squander the opportunity to invest in culture and diversity, particularly through their hiring practices. Some of the ways organizations are doing this is by encouraging existing employees to help source candidates, with 65% using company-wide referral programs, 56% running referral bonuses for specific referrals from underrepresented groups, 51% actively engaging in an internal mobility program and 33% hosting sourcing days. However, 24% of organizations do not have any formal referral program.

There are risks to this sourcing approach, however, as outlined by Daniel Chait, Co-founder and CEO of Greenhouse.

“In order to widen your talent pool and attract the best talent, business leaders must ask themselves what really matters. Does a role really require a university degree or will enough experience matter? And while employee referrals can be a great source of talent, they can also be a real impediment to increasing diversity. You may end up essentially replicating the makeup of your current workforce.”

Organizations that continue to bring an old playbook to a new game will quickly fall behind their competitors in attracting new talent. Favoring a copy-and-paste strategy over clear criteria and structures for decision-making will limit their chances of building an inclusive workplace. By continually sourcing candidates from the same talent pool, companies are not only cutting out many great candidates, but also likely permeating unconscious biases in the types of people they hire. A strong and structured hiring process will be the deciding factor of who wins on this newly leveled playing field.

Carin van Vuuren

Carin van Vuuren

is a dynamic marketing leader with a track record of delivering growth through the combination of brand, digital and strategic marketing that includes communication, demand generation and sales enablement. Carin has extensive experience with B2B and B2C clients, creating and redefining their brands, corporate marketing and stakeholder engagement strategies. As CMO of Greenhouse, Carin focuses on growing the Greenhouse brand as the company expands into the enterprise and EMEA markets.

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