Changes in Hiring Practices During a Pandemic

August 11, 2020

Imagine a country in which unemployment hovered below 4% and employers had been scrambling for years to find employees who either possessed or were capable of learning highly sought-after skill sets. Yes, that was just another day in January of this year.

Now in the middle of Q3, many employers find themselves with an employee population which has, by varying degrees, embraced working from home and hasn’t conducted an in-person meeting in months. With bated breath, companies have been ramping up their candidate searches for the most-critical needs, but they’ve definitely made adjustments to how they identify and onboard new team members.

Selection

With a ban on non-essential travel and caution against in-person interviews, hiring managers have become more comfortable using video technology resulting in expedited interview processes.  Once clients are reasonably certain they have the right person, they can move candidates quickly through additional interviews without the hassle of coordinating onsite meetings with multiple hiring authorities.  When pre-employment screening is required, some clients are extending offers and setting start dates before they get screening results as the pandemic has impacted access or availability to records and testing.

Remote Employees

According to a recent Gallup survey, over a 3-week period the number of employees working remotely went from 31% to 62%.  With nothing but time on their hands, employers began to assess the long-term potential for a successful remote workforce and some (e.g., Facebook and Twitter) have already moved to permanent work-from-home options.  Taking this approach allows employers to evaluate their compensation strategies, making adjustments not only to salaries but total rewards packages that exclude relocation expenses.  Although moving toward a full or even partial remote workforce may require more attention to varying state and local employment laws, the employer’s efforts reflect the Company’s desire for agility and commitment to its employees and candidates.

Despite relatively low optimism for a swift post-pandemic economic recovery, employers are exploring all options to maximize efficiency, minimize expenses, and to mitigate turnover in seats occupied by the top employees.  Adopting or adapting hiring strategies that satisfy critical Talent needs while showing flexibility in a time of unparalleled crisis will set employers apart in the eyes of employees, present and future.

If you need to hire contract or full-time Talent but can’t move your focus from operating your department or business, contact ITAC today!