Here’s How a Recession Can Affect Your Pick of Candidates

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Here’s How a Recession Can Affect Your Pick of Candidates

Many companies have had significant trouble securing the talent they need. Demand simply outweighs supply, leaving many employers stuck with “good enough” candidates instead of an ideal fit. While many companies assume a potential economic downturn could level the playing field, that may not be the case.

While the job market is on an upswing, other economic factors aren’t so bright. Many experts believe a recession may be on the horizon, a situation that could once again alter the recruitment landscape. If a recession does occur, here’s a look at how it could impact your pick of candidates overall.

Recessions Require Tough Choices

In many cases, recessions impact companies more dramatically than individuals in the beginning. As sales dwindle, employers have to make tough choices about their workforce. Often, that slows hiring activity, as companies may need to streamline their workforce to remain competitive.

Since slow hiring impacts the candidate experience, that can actually make top talent harder to secure. No matter the market conditions, dawdling rarely works out if you want to land the best and brightest, as they always have options.

Additionally, depending on how a company navigates a downturn, it may help or harm its recruitment efforts. Widespread layoffs, particularly if there’s little notice to workers, rarely come across well in the court of public opinion. If an employer is simply too harsh about layoffs – even if they’re necessary – its reputation may be damaged to the point of reducing access to top talent.

Demand May Still Outpace Supply

It’s easy to assume that slowed-down hiring means it would turn into an employer’s market. However, even with a recession, demand may still outpace supply.

Mainly, this is because of where the biggest labor force shortages sit. Many of the skill gaps companies face today are the same areas they’d want to shore up during a recession. Since they aren’t niches where companies would like to cut back, that would leave the competition for those professionals fierce, even during an economic downturn.

Additionally, the most notable shortfalls are in skill areas that have experienced shortages for years, including well before the pandemic. Certain tech capabilities are a prime example, as companies have long had trouble getting the technical talent they need to thrive. However, that isn’t the only area experiencing that struggle.

Depending on the types of candidates you need to hire, it’s possible that demand for their skills will remain high even if there’s a recession. As a result, hiring challenges may remain.

Harsher Working Conditions

A top performer is typically a better investment during a recession than an average worker, as the top performer may be able to handle more responsibilities with greater ease. However, companies assuming that having skilled professionals by their sides means they can ignore short-handedness in the name of the recession may have a rude awakening.

While employees understand more may be asked of them during challenging times, that isn’t an excuse for companies to pinch pennies by avoiding hiring. Remember, top-tier professionals always have options, regardless of economic conditions. And if you push too hard, you won’t just struggle with retention. Instead, word will spread, making it hard to recruit, too.

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Fortunately, you can find the flexible hiring solutions you need by partnering with a staffing agency like Top Notch Personnel. Contact us to learn more about our services today.