7 Recruiting Trends for 2010

Companies looking to rebuild the workforce this year will confront new challenges in the labor market.

As the economy slowly recovers, many managers will discover the labor cuts they made in 2009 were a bit too deep. Even with the U.S. unemployment rate hovering around 10%, recruiting the right candidates to help your business cope with increasing demand is still a big challenge. After all, your goal should be to find and attract high-performing employees that not only help you deal with increasing volumes but also position your operation for future growth.

Recruiting this year will be different than it has been in years past; that's an understatement. Based on our experience helping companies with their recruiting efforts, we've identified several emerging trends and then used those trends to make seven general predictions about the labor market in 2010. Knowing these trends before embarking on a recruiting effort will help you attract the best people to your operation.

  1. The top talent pool will be tight

    As the economy slowly recovers, employers will seek to hire the best talent they can find: the “A” players. However, most of these coveted workers are likely to be employed. They usually have above-average jobs and are often reluctant to switch. Under these conditions, it will take an aggressive recruiting effort to attract these passive candidates.

  2. Counteroffers will increase

    Very few companies will let top performers walk away without the opportunity to entice them to stay. Most organizations will use their resources proactively to ensure that top performers stay on board, engaged and productive.

  3. Expect a spike in turnover

    Companies will be unprepared for the high turnover rate when the economy rebounds. Employees will remember the actions of their company in response to the financial crisis. Those employees who suffered through frozen wages and decreased bonuses and perks could exit quickly.

  4. The interview and offer process will be shortened

    Companies have lost many good candidates over the last year due to a time lapse between the interview and job offer. Keep the momentum going by ironing out the details of the job prior to conducting interviews. Also, minimize delays due to organizational bureaucracy and politics.

  5. Managers and employees will recruit talent

    This year, managers and current employees will become recruiters and hiring authorities and often make the first contact with the candidates. This means they also create the first impression of the company. Savvy businesses will show their employees that hiring the best people is just as important as offering the highest level of services to customers. In fact, they go hand in hand.

  6. Background checks will improve along with technology

    According to the Society for Human Resource Management, 80% of U.S. companies use background checks as part of a pre-employment background screening program.

  7. Candidate testing and assessments will increase

    More than ever, companies want to look beyond the resume to identify the personal and work behavior of a candidate to determine readiness and desire to fulfill the objectives of the position.


Dan Charney is managing partner at Direct Recruiters Inc., a provider of recruiting, staffing and consulting services. Charney works with companies involved in packaging, capital equipment, material handling, supply chain automation, data collection and radio frequency identification technology.
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