Staffing Light Industrial
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From light industrial and construction to administrative and professional positions, hiring practices for staffing firms are projected to grow. Rising demand across the country, even as permanent hiring numbers remain dubious, is seeing many businesses turn to temporary staffing firms to meet their human resource needs. Recruiting and retaining employees is a cost most prefer to outsource. This is good news the staffing industry.
Employment statistics show that on any given day in 2013, temporary or contract workers in the United States averaged 2.86 million. The numbers for 2014 are expected to continue to grow as staffing agencies began the year with clients poised to utilize more temp employees. In a post-recession era, the no strings attached approach of staffing relationships is favorable to employers and staffing agencies.
While some economist might view this hiring trend as a negative statement on the economy, many staffing experts point to economic advantages. For example, seasonal businesses can easily consume money and resources best invested elsewhere in recruiting and hiring. An available steady stream of skilled workers eliminates this cost since workers are hired as needed through staffing firms.
Similarly, non-seasonal businesses can also benefit when they face unexpected increases in staffing needs. Project-related work and medical or family leave replacements are easily managed by using the assistance of staffing firms. Even though an influx of workers is required for a short period of time, these businesses are not participating in a mass layoff once the project is complete. Financially, it is a more prudent decision to use temporary workers than hiring full-time or part-time employees that will be laid off later.
2014 Predictors for Market Growth
For businesses, hiring needed workers through staffing firms is a good way to save on overhead costs. For staffing firms, this presents opportunities for growth with rising demand. According to Staffing Industry analysts, the staffing industry in the U.S. could experience a five percent growth in 2014.
Many businesses that use staffing services have grown to expect more than just a warm body to sit at a desk. Expectations for staffing firms to provide extended service such as talent management and training are increasing. This requires doing more than simply bolstering the number of new talent to market to clients. Strategic initiatives are taking center stage since these businesses have the role of hiring and retention to staffing firms.
Another facet of how rising demand will influence growth projections is making investments in human capital. Potential candidates should have the right skill set and education for a particular job. However, staffing firms should have a dedicated team that grooms candidates to meet client expectations.
New technologies will also contribute to the market growth of staffing firms. Speed and efficiency are essential to meeting client demands and many staffing firms are beginning to embrace using more than one channel to find top talent.
According to a recent survey, approximately 94 percent of recruiters plan to incorporate social media networks into recruitment efforts. As more job seekers use their mobile devices to search for opportunities, staffing firms will use compatible software to reach out to these potential candidates. Video interviews are saving more than 50 percent in travel costs and many staffing firms are using this medium as part of the recruitment process.
One sector within the staffing industry that may benefit the most from rising demand is IT. Called the “big 4” – mobile, cloud, data analytics and social networks – are changing many business models. Not surprisingly, these changes are also transforming IT staffing needs. Companies need to rethink their IT staffing needs and are struggling to fill many positions.
Demand for positions such as data warehouse analysts, mobile app developers, product designers and cloud computing are taking center stage. IT staffs are expected to develop and design new applications that will improve online interactivity for consumers. Companies want to improve marketing performance by analyzing online consumer behaviors better. In efforts to do these things while reducing labor costs through more automated services, the demand for staffing firms to find the right talent faster will continue to increase.
Rising Demand and Flat Budgets
Rising demand could clash with reduced or flat budgets if companies have not sufficiently planned for staffing needs. This could present some challenges for staffing firms that may see an increase in demand without significant increases in revenue. Yet, most companies are not eager to recruit and hire full-time employees. Supplemental staffing remains the optimal choice to finding the skills and expertise that will help companies meet objectives and goals.
Staffing firms have an advantage in showing clients how their services are compatible with budget concerns. Since many companies are reluctant to hire full-time employees that require health insurance and other overhead costs, staffing firms can step in to fill the gaps.
Top Talent Competition
Despite some concerns about company budgets, competition for top talent will continue to challenge staffing firms trying to meet client demands. Part of the reason is that candidates with specialized skills will remain in high demand and few in numbers. This will require more investment from staffing firms to not only hire skilled candidates, but to also prepare those with lesser skills.
More than ever, clients of staffing firms want very specific skill sets and work experience, which significantly narrows the talent pool. To overcome these potential obstacles, staffing firms should consider candidates that have transferable skills. For instance, a candidate with previous work experience in a highly regulated field such as finance could be a good fit for another industry with similar strict regulations.
A more rigorous screening process is also affecting the competition for top talent. Online screening could shut out good candidates, but also comes with requirements on how information is used to make hiring decisions. Not only are good candidates potentially screened out of the process, but the best talent may not want to work for a firm that scrutinizes their personal life.
Recruiting, engaging and retaining top talent is just as important for staffing firms as it is for companies that hire full-time employees. All three are interdependent and excelling in one can have positive effects in another. Likewise, poor execution of one area can prove fatal to overcoming the competitive environment for top talent.
Generally, staffing firms will need to have a laser focus on recruiting top talent that matches client needs. Recruiting the right people is about having an effective strategy to help clients reach their goals. Tools and strategies that worked in the past will be stretched to the limit. Unless staffing firms remain open to pairing new technologies and innovative solutions to client demands, they will lose out on the talent competition.
Increasingly, the workforce is composed of more temporary employees. At the end of 2013, the staffing industry benefited from a 5.9 percent increase in the number of candidates working for clients in the United States. This increase was part of a continuous growth pattern throughout the year. Projections for the coming year are expected to continue this growth pattern, which means staffing firms must be in a position to handle the demand.
For many firms, this will require having systems and processes in place that makes efficiency a priority. The economy will continue its recovery process and in the mean time, staffing firms are positioning themselves to present exceptional candidates.