Industry Leaders’ Take On Hiring During Layoffs [Webinar Summary]
In recent months, many tech corporations have announced layoffs as they rebalance their workforces and trim their belts in response to concerns about a weakening economy. However, despite these tech layoffs, the larger labour market has added jobs, with the US unemployment rate remaining at 3.6% in February. This is not uncommon, as even when many industries are laying off, and the news coming out of the marketplace is a little grim, some companies and industries are bound to be countercyclical to the current economic environment and hiring.
Recruiters face numerous challenges in this context. One of the most significant challenges is finding and retaining talent with the right skills and experience to meet the changing market needs. This was the subject of the webinar that Leoforce hosted on 28th February 2023.
The expert panelists explored various hiring strategies that recruiters can use to deal with the current challenges in the job market. They also discussed how the recent hiring trends could be augmented using AI tools and how they have integrated them into their processes.
Walter Sabrin, Senior VP of Recruiting Services for Vensure Employer Services
Walter heads up the internal recruiting process and is responsible for finding and hiring the best talent in the PEO, BPO, Benefits, and HR Outsourcing Industries across the United States, Colombia, Argentina, Canada, and Mexico.
Kirsten, Manager of the Spectraforce Onshore Technical Recruitment Team
With over ten years of staffing industry experience across multiple verticals, Kirsten is passionate about training and development. She ensures her recruitment team is on top of market trends and hiring practices and is successful in the ever-changing world of staffing.
Katie Lawrence, VP of Global Sales at Leoforce
With over 15 years of experience working with HR executives in the Fortune 500 and beyond, Katie has overseen sales, marketing, and client success teams at a global level, launching multiple disruptive products and services in new markets and leading international expansions.
What ticked-off tech layoffs? Is recruitment slowing down?
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused significant damage to the economy and reduced consumer demand, leading companies to reduce their workforce to cut costs. Additionally, regulatory uncertainty and market volatility in sectors such as crypto and tech have forced companies to restructure and optimize their operations to remain profitable.
Most tech layoffs this year have been centred in the Silicon Valley giants, with Facebook parent Meta Platforms Inc., Google parent Alphabet Inc., and Microsoft Corp. all reducing their workforces. However, downsizing has spread beyond high-growth technology corporations to other sectors of the economy that have followed suit; these include Financial Services, Retail, Crypto, and Auto & Manufacturing.
Katie views it as sign of industry maturity
Drawing from personal experience and proximity to such companies, it has been noted that these measures are often taken to improve the organization’s skillset and overall efficiency. This is achieved through implementing performance management processes, which may result in the departure of employees who have demonstrated lower performance levels over a significant period.
While such events may yield significant numbers of affected individuals, it is important to consider the underlying reasons and context surrounding the decisions made. For instance, companies may have experienced unexpected delays in retirement plans, resulting in the retention of high-level employees for longer than anticipated. As a result, early or voluntary retirement packages may be offered alongside layoffs to reduce the overall headcount. So they could be, you know, these big numbers, but there’s a lot of reasons behind that, and of course, we know that a lot of companies that are doing layoffs are still hiring.
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment to grow by 8.3 million jobs from 2021 to 2031. About a third of the new jobs are expected to be in the healthcare and social assistance fields.
This brings us to the main discussion of the webinar. Amidst the tech layoffs on one side and the increased hiring on the other, recruiters have a flood of resumes coming in.
Walter Sabrin reflects on hiring automation
Objectively sourcing and evaluating the high volume of resumes flooding are the market.
…receiving a large volume of resumes is not always productive, and it is important to communicate effectively, understand the job requirements, and narrow down candidate screening criteria. Casting a wide net is no longer effective, and being specific about skills, location, industry, and hard and soft qualifications is crucial.
Structured interviews are important, and it is necessary to train hiring managers in interview skills and identify non-negotiables. Diversifying sourcing channels, such as college recruiting or offshore resources, can also be helpful.
Additionally, utilizing artificial intelligence tools such as Leo Force can be effective, but defining the metrics and KPIs to expect from them is important.
Kirsten’s advocates Quiet Hiring
If a company is not actively engaging in effective hiring practices, turnover will likely persist, resulting in the constant need to fill positions. Failure to market to the needs of candidates during the initial hiring process can lead to disengagement and an inability to retain talent long-term. Additionally, neglecting to focus on the existing talent within the company can result in missed opportunities to develop and nurture valuable employees.
AI is augmenting the hiring process at every step
Kirsten further pushes for leveraging technology to augment all hiring processes.
AI hiring tools like Arya is an excellent tool for quickly building data and extracting candidate information from job descriptions. Arya allows us to identify passive and active candidates and quickly source dream candidates from multiple sources, such as CareerBuilder, Monster, and LinkedIn. By consolidating this information, Arya provides a comprehensive overview of the candidate pool, saving time and money. It also provides market intelligence and allows us to focus our efforts more specifically. Additionally, it’s ability to connect with multiple channels and consolidate information makes it a valuable tool for our team.
To see how an AI recruiting tool can help mitigate the impacts of mass layoffs or expedite hiring in general, take a demo today.