3 Strategies for Solving Hospitality Recruitment Challenges with Technology

Amongst travel and hospitality recruitment challenges is a clear and persistent issue: staffing shortages. Talent leaders are struggling to fill empty roles amid low unemployment rates.

According to a 2023 survey by Deloitte, more than half of hotel executives (53%) say their properties have between 25–74% of the workforce they had in 2019. The situation at airports is even tighter with 62% of executives saying their workforce is half its prepandemic size or smaller.

On top of this, the unemployment rate sits at 3.8% in the U.S., 4.3% in the UK and 3.7% in Australia. The travel industry also saw a massive exodus of workers. In 2022, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported record quit rates during the Great Resignation, with the quit rate in leisure and hospitality jumping by a percentage point to 6.4%. So, how can talent leaders hire hospitality and travel workers when the available pool is smaller?

Luckily, the right technology solutions deployed at the right times during the recruitment process can help talent leaders source, attract and screen candidates to find the best talent more efficiently and effectively. In this article, we’ll cover three technology interventions that talent acquisition teams can put into place to tackle hospitality recruitment challenges.

Hospitality Recruitment Challenge No. 1: Our open positions receive few applicants, and many of those who do apply do not have the background or experience needed to succeed in the role.

Solution No. 1: Invest in artificial intelligence sourcing technology to fill the top of your funnel.

Amongst common hospitality recruitment challenges that we see is finding talent with a wide variety of specialized skills across diverse and distant geographies. There is no one-size-fits all approach to hiring travel and hospitality talent. Finding a chef for a luxury property in Lake Como, Italy will look very different from a search for housekeeping staff at a family resort in Orlando, Florida. Finding a flight attendant looks very different from filling a baggage handler role.

With such a tight talent market, employers must target passive talent. During the Great Rehire talent leaders focused on filling roles as quickly as possible, but now they need to focus on finding and hiring more experienced workers.

An AI-enabled candidate sourcing tool can identify passive candidates with the right experience for specific roles and can even identify which candidates would be most likely to leave their current employers. Within seconds, recruiters can build a list of these candidates and share the opportunity. PeopleScout’s talent acquisition suite, AffinixTM, includes the AI sourcing feature, Talent Finder, which can connect employers with millions of passive candidates.

Consider the following best practices for using an AI sourcing tool:

  • Before searching for candidates, make sure you have a thorough understanding of the technical and soft skills needed to be successful in the role.
  • Use features, like PeopleScout’s Diversity Boost, that can identify candidates from underrepresented backgrounds to help meet your DE&I goals.
  • Blend AI with the human touch. By having a recruiter reach out to a sourced candidate with a personalized message, employers can create a positive experience.
  • Make sure a human makes all final hiring decisions. AI can make the process more efficient, but hiring managers should make the final call.

Hospitality Recruitment Challenge No. 2: Candidates drop out of our process before reaching the offer stage, either by abandoning the application or ghosting the interview.

Solution No. 2: Improve the candidate experience by making the process quick and easy by embracing tools like SMS or virtual interviews.

Hospitality employers must ensure that their candidate experience sets them apart from other employers at every stage of the candidate journey. For candidates, how they’re treated during the hiring process is a preview of what their experience will be as an employee.

PeopleScout research shows that the hospitality industry has a lot of room for improvement in this area. In our analysis of the candidate experience of more than 215 different organizations, the hospitality sector came in last overall with the lowest average scores in every stage except Follow-Up (in which it was second to last). While hospitality organizations effectively showcased their diversity and inclusion efforts on their career sites, only half gave candidates the opportunity to register their interest.

Your candidate experience should be unique to your brand and help you distinguish yourself from other employers hiring for similar roles or skills. Many talent acquisition teams don’t appreciate that candidates don’t perceive the recruitment process as a funnel. They’re the main character in their own story, and they expect to be treated that way. Candidates want to engage in their job search on their own terms. So, anytime they encounter a roadblock to getting the information they want, especially if they don’t know what to expect in the next stage, they’re more likely to drop out of your process.

There are several ways to leverage  technology to make the process easier for candidates. First, start with a shortened application. According to PeopleScout research, nearly 40% of organizations asked candidates to duplicate information that was already contained in their resume or CV. Make sure your application only collects the information that is most critical for determining who moves along to the next step of the process.

From there, other technology solutions can be used to gather the additional information necessary to make a hiring decision. SMS can be used for an initial text screening, and virtual interviews, like those available in Affinix, allow candidates to answer additional questions at their own pace while feeling as though they’re driving the process.

Finally, automated communication can keep a candidate engaged in the process. The right technology platform can help by sending automated messages to candidates, via email or chatbot technology, updating them on their application status. You can even craft messages letting a candidate know if they did not get the job, so they aren’t left wondering if you ghosted them.

Consider the following best practices for using technology to improve your candidate experience:

  • Make sure your application is mobile-friendly and can be filled out in 10 minutes or less. Test your current application to see how long it takes to apply.
  • Provide candidates with the opportunity to opt-in to receive text messages or emails from your organization to remain in compliance with local spam laws.
  • Tailor the type of virtual interview to the type of role. While video interviews may be appropriate for customer-facing roles, others may prefer the opportunity to answer questions with recorded audio.
  • Make it simple for candidates to understand where they are in your process; this can be something as simple as a progress bar.

Hospitality Recruitment Challenge No. 3: Our assessment process isn’t effective at identifying the candidates most likely to succeed in the role, leading to increased turnover, reduced productivity and disengaged employees.

Solution No. 3: Assess candidates for passion, purpose and mindset.

The travel and hospitality industry is all about guest experience, and hotels, airlines, restaurants and theme parks differentiate themselves with the unique experience that they provide. So, talent leaders need to find candidates who not only have the right skills and experience but also a deep understanding of the brand and how it is reflected in the service provided.

For example, in a major city, you may find three hotels on the same street, one catering to a high-end luxury experience in a historic building, another geared toward young travelers with bold art and hit music playing in the lobby, and a third designed with business travelers in mind—with a large business center, meeting rooms and plenty of quiet spaces for someone to plug in their laptop. Many hotel brands even have this variety of styles within their own portfolios. The service provided in each hotel looks different, and a person who excels at a luxury property may not thrive in a trendy hotel.

By selecting the right assessment tool, employers can go beyond looking at just capability, behavior and results but also determine whether candidates align with their organization’s purpose, have passion for the work they would do and whether they have the mindset to adapt to new environments.

By building an assessment during pre-screening that accounts for passion, purpose and mindset in addition to the standard skills and experience, employers can use technology to shortlist candidates based on several different attributes at the same time. This way, employers can get a clear picture of the different strengths and weaknesses of candidates in order to make informed decisions about which candidates are best to bring forward to the interview stage.

By identifying candidates who match well with an employer’s brand of guest experience, talent leaders can reduce turnover and build a happier, more engaged team. In turn, that leads to better customer experience and a better bottom line.

Consider the following best practices for building an effective assessment for hospitality talent:

  • Identify the essential behaviors for the role to separate those who will actually be successful from those who simply present well during an interview.
  • Build assessment tools around your organization’s vision and values so applicants have a chance to form a connection to them from the start.
  • Self-evaluation tools can also be used to help applicants consider their own strengths and whether the role will offer sufficient opportunity to use and demonstrate them.
  • Distinguish between good candidates who meet the criteria and great candidates who will take an organization further.

Finding the Right Talent Technology for Hospitality

The travel and hospitality industry still faces an uphill climb in returning to or even exceeding their prepandemic staffing levels, but talent leaders have additional and improved tools available to help identify, attract and screen candidates. However, in a full marketplace, finding the right tools can be a challenge. Consider partnering with an RPO with expertise in technology that can help identify the most impactful ways new tools can solve your most pressing hospitality recruitment challenges.

Get more strategies for attracting and hiring hospitality, travel and tourism talent, with our Recruitment Handbook for Travel and Hospitality.

Checking In: Updating Your Hospitality Recruitment Strategies for the New World of Work

Travel is back, but hospitality employers are still playing catch up. Travelers around the world are booking flights, checking into hotel rooms, making reservations and buying tickets. Brands are attracting customers but struggling to attract employees with the right hospitality recruitment strategies.

In 2020, the size of the global tourism market fell by nearly a trillion dollars as travel came to a halt. The industry finally surpassed its prepandemic highs in 2023, reaching a market size of $2.3 trillion (USD). But employment in the industry lags behind. In the U.S. alone, nearly 2 million hospitality jobs remain unfilled, according to the Washington Post.

The old hospitality recruitment strategies aren’t working anymore. The world of work has changed.  Many sectors have expanded the availability of remote and hybrid work, and many front-line hospitality workers left the industry for more flexible roles.

Employers must update their employer branding and candidate attraction strategies to draw in top hospitality talent. In this article, we cover the hospitality brain drain and provide hospitality recruitment strategies that talent leaders can put into place now to get ahead of the competition.

The Hospitality Industry Brain Drain

One of the largest lasting impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic is the permanent loss of talent.  as workers fled the travel and hospitality industry for more stable, more flexible or less customer-facing positions. While employment in the hospitality sector still lags, professional and business services saw 1.4 million new jobs added during the pandemic.

Rather than returning to employment in hotels or with airlines, many laid off workers looked for behind-the-scenes office work where they were offered more flexibility, more traditional hours and often higher pay.

In 2022, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported record quit rates during the Great Resignation, with the quit rate in leisure and hospitality jumping by a percentage point to 6.4%.

This phenomenon, sometimes called “brain drain,” has left hospitality employers with not just fewer workers but also those with less experience. This has led to increased competition for experienced hospitality workers and often increased time-to-fill rates for more specialized hospitality roles. Talent leaders must work to coax experienced workers back to the industry while also focusing on the next generation. Below, we outline three strategies to bring back and bring in hospitality talent.

Top 3 Hospitality Recruitment Strategies

1. It’s Time to Update Your Employer Brand

In today’s talent market, hospitality employers need to stand out in a crowded field of competition. Your employer value proposition and employer brand will be what convinces top talent to join your organization, rather than the hotel down the street or the customer service job that will allow them to take calls from their home offices.

However, after the past several years, few have had the resources to invest in and update their employer brands. If you haven’t refreshed your employer brand in a few years, now is the time. Each hospitality brand has its own distinctive personality and style that should be reflected in both consumer marketing and employer branding.

Your employer value proposition, or EVP, is the foundation of your employer brand. Your EVP describes the give and get between employer and employee. At PeopleScout, our EVP work has five phases:

  1. Define
  2. Discover
  3. Develop
  4. Design
  5. Deploy

In the define stage, we build a baseline understanding of you and your competition through competitor audits, social listening, candidate experience diagnostics and collaborative sessions. In the discover phase, we go deeper to understand what makes your organization unique through interviews with leaders and employees throughout the organization.

From there, we analyze the data and develop an EVP prototype that we validate through workshops and interviews with employees. In the design phase, we create the creative concepts to bring your EVP to life with an employer brand playbook and employer brand toolkit. These include deliverables like EVP positioning and messaging, social media posts and ads, and printed materials like posters and exhibition stands for job fairs.

Finally, we deploy, focusing on an employee ambassador program that helps your current employees share their stories with prospective candidates. From there, your EVP and brand can flex and evolve to adapt to changing candidate expectations.

By honing your employer value proposition and attraction messaging, you can zero in the characteristics you need for the variety of roles you need filled. By shifting your mindset from focusing on getting the most applications, or even those with certain experience, to getting applications with the right profile, you can reduce attrition by increasing the likelihood of your new hires being successful.

2. Are Your Offers and Benefits Competitive?

The leisure and hospitality sector has seen some of the highest wage increases across all employers in recent years. In the U.S., wages in hospitality have risen 23% over the past three years. Additionally, workers have more options for hybrid or flexible work in other industries where the pay is similar or even higher. This makes it more difficult for hospitality employers to compete. According to the Boston Hospitality Review, compensation was one of the most cited reasons that people left the hospitality industry during the pandemic.

To stand out in this market, you need offers that are not only competitive in terms of salary but also provide the types of flexibility and benefits that candidates are looking for and can likely find in other industries. Hospitality candidates are increasingly interested in remote work. Google searches for “remote hotel jobs” have increased about 400% since 2019.

Many hospitality jobs require being on site, making hybrid work only possible for a small percentage of roles; however, employers should evaluate and offer the option when possible. Additionally, consider flexible work arrangements or scheduling that would allow front-line workers time to do things like pick children up from school.

Other benefits can also help bring in or bring back hospitality workers. While 88% of employees say that health benefits are important to them, only 30% of restaurants offer medical insurance. Not every employer will have the budget for health insurance, so consider other benefits, like caregiver benefits, parental leave or a commuting allowance.

You can also consider different compensation models. Consider a salaried front-of-house staff. According to Monster, employers who pay their front of house staff a salary gain an advantage for attracting top talent, and those workers create a better customer experience because they aren’t focused on “turn-and-burn” tactics. You can also consider profit sharing or bonuses to help attract and retain employees.

3. Focus on Culture

Your company culture may not be listed as a line item on a paystub, but it can serve as a benefit for attracting top talent in a tough industry. In any customer-facing role, employees can be subject to stressful situations, but a supportive culture can increase employee retention.

One survey found that 91% of hospitality workers have dealt with customers who believed they inherently deserved privileges or special treatment. Of those workers, 70% wanted to leave the industry entirely after confronting a demanding consumer. Employers need to ensure that they not only meet traveler expectations but also keep workers happy and focus on retention.

Hospitality employers should focus on building a supportive culture. This should start from day one with structured training and can include things like mentorship programs to support new employees and help them feel like part of the team. Additionally, consider adding wellness programs that include things like counseling or employee assistance programs.

Finally, the travel and hospitality sector has a unique opportunity to build a fun culture by creating ways for employees to enjoy the services normally provided to guests. This can look like VIP perks for employees and their friends and families, discounted meals or free meals during shifts, yearly overnight stays at hotels to celebrate work anniversaries or discounted tickets to events.

Choosing the Right Hospitality Recruiting Strategies

Candidate expectations are always changing, so hospitality employers need to find the recruitment strategies that work best to attract the right candidates at the right time. An experienced RPO provider can help talent leaders narrow down the best solutions and help build an employer brand to bring in top talent with the right skills and mindset.

To get more strategies for attracting and hiring hospitality, travel and tourism talent, download our Recruitment Handbook for Travel and Hospitality.

The Recruitment Handbook for Travel and Hospitality

Hospitality & Travel Industry Recruitment is On the Road Again [Infographic]

When the pandemic struck in 2020, the travel and hospitality industry saw some of the biggest impacts worldwide, and the reverberations and recovery are still shaping the industry years later.  

Now, people are traveling again, but while many industries have recovered the jobs lost in 2020, hospitality lags behind. The industry faces a new set of talent challenges, but employers have the opportunity to reshape their talent programs for the world of travel.   

Check out this infographic for insights on this transforming industry.

Through the job market volatility that has defined the hiring market for the past three years, the travel and hospitality industry saw some of the biggest impacts worldwide, and the reverberations and recovery are still shaping the industry years later. Now, people are traveling again, but while many industries have regained the jobs lost in 2020, hospitality lags behind.  

 

Travelers are finally ready to hit the skies, seas and roads for both personal and business travel. 

 

After several years of staying close to home, pent up demand has the travel industry booming. Global travel revenue is expected to triple 2020 levels by 2027. Full recovery of business travel to 2019 spend volumes appears likely by late 2024 or early 2025.i 

 

Travel is more meaningful than it used to be, leading to increased traveler expectations and more challenges for hospitality staff. 

 

46% of people say travel is now more important to them than it was before the pandemic.ii  

43% of people are upping their travel budget in 2023.iii 

91% of hospitality workers said they have dealt with customers who believed they inherently deserved privileges or special treatment, and 70% have wanted to leave the industry as a result.iv 

 However, hospitality staffing has not caught up to the renewed demand.  

 

In the U.S. alone, nearly 2 million hospitality jobs remain unfilled, even as hiring slows in other industries.v 

In September 2022, 87% of hoteliers reported staffing shortages.vi 

In the UK, hospitality job openings are still 74% higher than they were in January and February of 2020.vii 

 

One big reason for that? Millions of hospitality workers fled the industry during the pandemic and recovery. 

 

15.6% of people left their hospitality jobs in March 2020.viii 

8.3% of hospitality staff left the sector between August and September 2022.ix 

 

 

Do you need help hiring hospitality workers? Learn about how you can attract the next generation of workers, build more diverse teams and plan for the future in The Recruitment Handbook for Hospitality and Travel. 

  

[Download your copy now!] 

For more hospitality insights, download our ebook, The Recruitment Handbook for Travel and Hospitality.

The Recruitment Handbook for Travel and Hospitality

The Recruitment Handbook for Travel and Hospitality

5 Strategies for Recruiting the Best Travel and Hospitality Talent Now and into the Future

Through the job market volatility that has defined the hiring market for the past three years, the travel and hospitality industry saw some of the biggest impacts worldwide, and the reverberations and recovery are still shaping the industry years later.

While many industries have recovered the jobs lost in 2020, hospitality lags behind. While people are traveling again, the industry faces a new set of talent challenges, from a talent exodus to shifting traveler expectations. Now, employers have the opportunity to reshape their talent programs for the world of travel.

In this handbook, you’ll learn:

  • Global trends driving the need for travel and hospitality talent
  • Strategies for overcoming challenges in your travel and hospitality hiring programs
  • How partnering with an RPO provider can help

Labor Market Trends Impacting Customer Service Hiring 

In today’s tumultuous labor market, where some industries are slowing down, customer service hiring is still challenging across financial services, utilities, hospitality and retail. Organizations in these sectors often find themselves competing on customer experience, which is being impacted by the lack of staff.  

A consumer survey from PwC shows that the four most important factors for an exceptional customer experience are speed, convenience, knowledgeable help and friendly service. The key to excelling in these factors is happy, engaged employees. Organizations with highly engaged workforces are 21% more productive, outperform competitors by 147% and have customer loyalty rates 233% higher than companies without engaged employees. 

How can companies achieve this kind of success when they are struggling to fill their customer-facing vacancies? Talent acquisition leaders are getting creative to recruit and retain customer service and call center talent. Here are three trends in how companies are adjusting their approach to hiring and engaging a customer-focused workforce.  

Trend 1: Hiring for Potential 

As customer expectations have changed, so have the skills needed for top customer service talent. We recently conducted a poll in which talent leaders indicated that soft skills related to emotional intelligence are highly sought after. 

The most desired skills for customer service recruiting are communication, empathy and relationship building.

We’ve worked with several of our clients to implement a culture-centric approach for attracting talent. Instead of assessing candidates based on previous work experience, we advise evaluating based on whether they possess the right skills, values and behaviors to be successful in the role. We’re reimagining interviews and assessments to be more focused on soft skills and purpose as we help talent leaders and hiring managers embrace candidates coming from outside of their industry.  

Trend 2: Expanding Talent Pools  

With job openings outnumbering job seekers, organizations across sectors find themselves getting creative as they try to expand their talent pool. For some, this means looking into new talent audiences, like underrepresented group or military veterans, and putting programs in place such as apprenticeships to future-proof their talent pipeline.  

For many companies, the growth of remote work means that they’re looking outside of their physical call center locations to candidates across the country and even expanding to new countries. This requires an adjustment to your talent acquisition strategy to ensure your employer brand and recruitment processes are ready to handle dispersed talent.  

Trend 3: Adapting to Remote Work 

Remote work is impacting more than just where talent comes from, it also affects how organizations onboard and engage their staff. As some countries are experiencing a cost-of-living crisis, customer service representatives are fielding queries from vulnerable customers which can be especially draining. Talent leaders are getting creative in how they connect with staff to ensure a sense of belonging and wellness—regardless of where the employee is working.  

Some contact centers have even adjusted their operational structure to work in “pods” which ensures agents—both in the office and remote—get the support they need to solve customer queries efficiently. Before, managers and team leads could walk around the call center floor and see when agents looked stressed. Remote working has made it harder to monitor employee wellbeing. Customer-focused leaders are investing in employee wellbeing, from training managers to catch the signs of burnout to offering wellbeing support programs.  

These are just a few of the labor market trends that are impacting how companies hire and engage talent. Clearly, organizations are finding creative and bold ways to invest in their employees to maintain a resilient and customer-focused workforce.  

9 STRATEGIES FOR SOLVING HIGH-VOLUME HIRING CHALLENGES

Strategies for Overcoming High-Volume Hiring Challenges

Competition for talent is steep, with high demand from contact centers, hospitality, retail, security, travel, logistics, healthcare and even government entities. In fact, 65% of companies have high-volume recruitment needs. Organizations across sectors are struggling to stand out in today’s competitive talent landscape, but for those talent leaders trying to meet their high-volume recruitment goals it feels like an impossible mission with soaring attrition rates, labor shortages and record job vacancies.

In this article, we’ll explore some of the top challenges you’re probably experiencing with high-volume recruitment and offer some ideas to address them.

What is High-Volume Recruitment?

High-volume recruitment involves sourcing, screening, interviewing and hiring large numbers of applicants for similar openings or job types. It requires a tricky balance of keeping substantial quantities of job applicants moving through the recruitment process at speed. Plus, throughout the year it requires talent acquisition teams to scale up quickly to meet seasonal demand, like for holiday shopping periods or during peak travel times.

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9 Strategies for Solving High-Volume Hiring Challenges

The High-Volume Hiring Landscape

COVID-19 was a mixed bag for high-volume recruitment. Retail and logistics workers were less severely impacted by furloughs and layoffs due to the “front line” status of grocery stores and the growth in online shopping. However, other industries, including the travel and hospitality sectors, were hit hard as lockdown came into force. 

The following trends are shaping the high-volume recruitment landscape:

  • Increased Competition:
    Job openings have grown by a third since 2019, yet job seekers per opening have fallen by half. Plus, hourly employees who were let go during the pandemic may feel resentful of their former employers and may have moved on to other roles in other sectors.
  • Recruiters are Rare:
    As of April 2021, recruiter job postings on LinkedIn surpassed pre-pandemic levels. There’s a record number of roles to be filled and not enough recruiters to tackle the work, creating a series of knock-on effects for organizations.
  • Attrition is Skyrocketing:
    A massive 41% of the global workforce is considering quitting their jobs and only 20% report feeling engaged at work. In a recent survey, 55% of hiring managers cited retention and turnover as the number-one issue impacting their ability to hire—and their company’s ability to thrive.
  • Candidate Expectations Have Changed:
    Modern candidates have modern expectations which are more aligned with today’s consumer experience. They want digital-first experiences—on their mobile phone—and fast responses. In fact, they expect acknowledgement of their application immediately upon submission, first contact from a recruiter within 24 hours and regular updates on the hiring process in a timely manner.

High-Volume Recruitment Challenges and Solutions

In this challenging landscape, how can employers stand out from the competition and attract a large number of candidates quickly without sacrificing quality?

We’ll tackle three of the top challenges below and offer strategies you can use to get ahead.

Challenge: Ghosting and Candidate Drop Off are Rampant

“Ghosting”—not showing up with no reason given and often no communication from the candidate—is on the rise at the interview, assessment and even onboarding stages. According to an Indeed survey on ghosting in the workplace, 22% of candidates say they have accepted a job offer but didn’t show up for the first day of work.

Many organizations are not prepared to support the current pace of hiring. Candidates are much less tolerant of long recruitment processes and pauses in communication from employers, so organizations who can move the fastest are more likely to have their offers accepted. Plus, those doing high-volume recruitment are seeing an increase in candidates dropping out of the funnel even in the application phase. If applying for a position is too complicated or too long, candidates won’t complete it. Online applications with 45 or more questions have an abandonment rate of nearly 90%.

Solution:

An RPO partner can help you evaluate your recruitment processes and identify opportunities for efficiency. They may suggest steps you could eliminate or combine and introduce tactics to help reduce the time between steps to help you keep pace with candidate expectations and reduce ghosting. They can also take over time-consuming steps like reference verification and background checks, leaving your team to focus on moving candidates through he funnel faster.

RPO providers also have access to the latest talent acquisition technology which can automate parts of your process. Leveraging CRM technology enhanced by artificial intelligence (AI), your RPO partner can nurture candidates through automated recruitment emails and even SMS messages. Texting is also a great way to screen candidates and automate interview scheduling, eliminating manual steps and accelerating your hiring timeline. By automating some of your candidate communications, you keep candidate engaged and reduce funnel drop off without increasing the workload for your recruiters and hiring managers.

Challenge: Desperation to Fill Vacancies Results in Reduced Quality-of-Hire

Increased attrition from the Great Resignation is leading to productivity loss. Many businesses have been forced to close stores due to lack of staff or because they don’t have enough staff to assist customers in a timely manner—in-store, in-branch or in the call center. The customer experience suffers which results in decreased sales and revenue loss, leading to some talent acquisition teams and hiring managers making bad hires out of desperation to fill vacancies.

With tight competition, time-to-offer has become a competitive differentiator. Often hiring managers may skip some interview or assessments steps in order to speed up their processes and keep talent in the funnel, leading them to compromise on quality-of-hire. Candidate without the right skills can also impact your customer experience.

Solution:

Challenge your assumptions or your hiring managers’ assumptions about the type of skills and background that are really needed for your roles. This will help you understand what experience is necessary for talent to have coming into the role and what can be learned on the job. We did this for one of our high-volume RPO clients that was struggling to hire for customer service roles. By interviewing their most successful customer-facing employees, we helped the brand realise that past customer service experience was not a predictor of future success, but rather employees stressed the amount of problem solving they had to do in their daily tasks. Not only did this expand their pool of talent, but it also helped to increase the quality of their hires and reduce attrition.

To support this, you should also rethink your candidate assessment so that it evaluates not just hard skills, like the ability to use a point-of-sale system, but also soft skills like empathy, attitude and work ethic, which are increasingly important for high-volume hiring. At PeopleScout, we’ve developed our whole person assessment model specifically for high-volume hiring. Through this we’ve helped many organizations create an assessment process that can identify and excite great candidates without extending their recruitment timeline.

Challenge: Leaning on Hiring Managers to Recruit is Leading to Burnout

With recruiters in short supply, hiring managers are picking up the slack in order to fill their vacancies. Unstructured, ineffective hiring processes and weak employer brands are putting the burden of attracting candidates and creating positive candidate experiences squarely on the hiring manager. The pressure only increases as they miss business targets due to lack of staff. In fact, 84% of hiring managers say they have hit or have come close to burnout because of hiring for their organization.

Solution:

A high-volume RPO solution helps augment your resources by acting as an extension of your in-house team. An RPO provider can handle everything at scale from sourcing and pipelining, screening, interviews, assessments, reference checks, offer management and more—whatever you need to free up your in-house recruiters and hiring managers to focus on more high-value tasks. Plus, RPO partners have particular focus on keeping hiring managers informed—whether it be ensuring they’re prepared for interviews or delivering feedback from candidates afterwards.

One of the biggest value-adds that RPO brings is experience with the latest talent technology innovations. An RPO partner can help you assess talent acquisition software to address all aspects of your recruiting process, from sourcing talent to creating a more efficient candidate experience. Your provider can show you how emerging technologies like AI, machine learning and predictive analytics can boost your speed and hire quality. Your hiring managers will love not having to spend so much time on administrative tasks.

Conclusion

The current talent market can’t be conquered with your old talent acquisition strategies. A high-volume RPO solution offers a range of approaches to help organizations attract, process and hire a large number of candidates. Whether you need to revamp your employer brand or to augment your in-house recruitment team, an RPO partner can help crank up your high-volume recruitment program.

9 Strategies for Solving High-Volume Hiring Challenges

9 Strategies for Solving High-Volume Hiring Challenges

Competition for hourly talent is steep, with high demand from call centers, hospitality, retail, security, travel, logistics, healthcare and even government entities. In fact, 65% of companies have high-volume recruitment needs.

Talent acquisition leaders are facing the most tumultuous job market in recent memory with an impossible combination of soaring job openings and a labor shortage.

  • So, how do they compete for hourly talent when the competition is so fierce?
  • And how can they prepare for seasonal peaks?
  • More importantly, how can they increase speed without sacrificing on quality-of-hire?

Download our ebook to learn 9 Strategies for Solving High-Volume Hiring Challenges. It’s a must-read for any talent acquisition team focused on solving critical problems in their high-volume hiring programs.

Seasonal Hiring: How RPO can Help You Better Source and Hire Seasonal Workers 

Hiring seasonal workers is essential for employers in need of extra talent during the holiday season. If your organization depends on seasonal hiring to augment your workforce, it is vital to efficiently source, recruit, and onboard your seasonal hires to ensure you are staffed during the holidays.

Without a well-designed seasonal hiring program in place, employers risk going understaffed for the holidays, or for other times of the year when a business reaches a peak. In this article, we will walk through how an RPO provider can help you hire talent for the holidays and equip you with tips on building a seasonal hiring pipeline.

What is a Seasonal Worker?

hiring seasonal workers

A seasonal worker or employee is a worker who works for a short period to meet seasonal peaks in demand for an employer. This might coincide with weather seasons or with holiday seasons.

Employers that use seasonal hires typically need assistance at the same time each year, for example as lifeguards or lawn care workers in the summer or ski instructors or snowplow drivers in the winter. When hiring seasonal workers, you can hire them on a part-time or full-time basis depending on your needs.

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9 Strategies for Solving High-Volume Hiring Challenges

What are the Benefits of Hiring Seasonal Workers?

If your organization experiences seasonal peaks in demand, hiring seasonal workers can be a good solution for staffing issues. Here are some of the benefits:

Extra Hands When You Need Them: When a business reaches its peak season, seasonal workers provide you that extra help fast when you need it, without the expense and time of hiring full-time staff.

Assist Full-Time Staff: Your seasonal employees can help alleviate the load carried by your full-time employees. This can improve morale for your permanent workforce because they have the support they need during peak times.

Low Risk: When you hire a permanent employee, you don’t always know if they’ll be a good fit for the job. Seasonal employees are only hired for a short period. If they aren’t a good fit, you have only made a minimal investment.

Potential full-time employee: On the other hand, if you hire a seasonal employee who works out well, you might be able to offer them a permanent position when one becomes available. It’s a trial run that works as a recruiting method for permanent positions.

Better Seasonal Hiring Begins with Crafting Better Job Descriptions

seasonal hiring

Writing job descriptions for seasonal positions is different from temporary, full- and part-time roles. It is important that your job descriptions accurately reflect the nature of your open positions, so candidates know ahead of time if they should apply.

For example, many seasonal roles are in a warehouse and logistics setting and may require candidates to work in a more physically demanding environment. Major retailers and logistics companies are in serious need of seasonal logistics workers with Walmart looking to fill 20,000 logistics roles while UPS, Kohl’s and Target are in need of 100,000 seasonal warehouse hires each.

To better understand the nature of the seasonal jobs for which you are writing job descriptions consider spending time shadowing workers in the relevant seasonal positions. What’s more, COVID-19 has made many employers became more familiar with video interviewing, however, the idea of leveraging videos to enhance your employment marketing and employer branding is sometimes overlooked.  

Job descriptions can be bolstered with video. A seasonal job posting could include a short video of a hiring manager describing the job and what they are looking for in a seasonal hire. Your video can even include examples of workers performing the most common tasks required to give candidates an accurate idea of the work involved.

How RPO Can Help

RPO providers can help employers conceive of and create a talent attraction strategy that considers both the needs of employers and seasonal hires through a data-driven approach to talent advisory and recruitment marketing making you a seasonal employer of choice.

Sourcing Seasonal Hires

Recruiting seasonal employees begins with mining a verdant source of seasonal workers. Employers should look for candidates such as students and other demographic looking for short-term employment opportunities. For example, recruiting recent graduates who are taking time to figure out what they want to do long-term is one way of sourcing seasonal talent. Often, these candidates prefer the temporary nature of seasonal work compared to a longer-term commitment.

Moreover, hiring candidates with a seasonal work mindset can help you keep them around for the full season or even retain them for next year.

When sourcing seasonal workers, look to hire people who want seasonal work including

  • Retired workers
  • Workers looking for extra work during the holidays
  • Stay-at-home parents who want to work while their kids are in school
  • Students who are on holiday break

How RPO Can Help

Many RPO providers have talent pools and networks they can tap into to source the right candidates for seasonal positions. RPOs also have experience building talent pipelines from the ground up and can assist employers in creating a sustainable seasonal hiring program that delivers year-in-year-out.

RPO partners also offer technology expertise to help you track, measure and optimize your seasonal hiring campaign by showing which channels and recruitment marketing messages are yielding the best candidates. They can help you with recruitment analytics so you can see your recruitment funnel at all your sites in a centralize dashboard.

Managing High-Volume While Hiring Seasonal Workers

seasonal hires

Many employers in need of seasonal hires require a large volume of talent to keep up with peak demand. High-volume hiring at its heart is a problem of scale which requires optimizing your time and recruiting spend. Recruitment automation can help you reduce the manual workload on your recruiting team and hiring managers while keeping your visibility on all of the candidates progressing through different stages of the interview process. Automating certain steps, such as screening and triggering assessments, allows recruiters to focus their time on higher-value, strategic work.

How RPO Can Help

An HR outsourcing solution such as RPO provides employers the ability to scale up seamlessly as seasonal hiring demands shift. With an internal talent acquisition team, it may be difficult to scale up hiring quickly enough to handle a higher number of hires and then scale back down when hiring volumes shrink.  What’s more, recruitment technology platforms such as PeopleScout’s Affinix can help you automate your recruitment program and create great high-volume hiring efficiency.

Never Neglect Your End of-Season Plans

How you end a relationship with seasonal hires can help with next season’s hiring. Here are a few things to keep in mind at the end of the season:

  • Availability: Ask outgoing seasonal employees if they would be interested in returning next season. Some workers design their needs and lifestyle around managing seasonal and temporary jobs, and they may be looking for another opportunity next year.
  • Exit interviews: To learn from successes and drawbacks, hold exit interviews with seasonal employees, regardless of how long they worked with you. Having informative feedback can help streamline next year’s efforts.
  • Permanent talent: Tempting as it may be, you likely won’t have the means or the resources to bring every seasonal employee on full-time. However, keep an eye on exceptional workers whose mix of soft skills and talent would be excellent fit as vacancies come open during other parts of the year.

How RPO Can Help

An RPO provider can help organize your offboarding efforts at the end of the season by assisting in exit interviews, managing your seasonal worker database as well as hiring top performers to permanent positions. An RPO provider’s ability to scale down engagements quickly means the process can be seamlessly executed so that you can resume business as usual.

Are You in Need of a Seasonal Hiring Partner?

seasonal worker

When it comes to maintaining your seasonal operations and providing excellent customer service during your peak months, hiring seasonal employees can help keep your business moving.

Whether you are in need of seasonal recruiting or a permanent talent solution, employers in our new world of work face rising recruitment challenges. An outsourced recruitment solution like PeopleScout’s high-volume RPO and Total Workforce Solutions can help you stay connected with talent and provide hiring resources that will add immediate value to your talent programs.

Maersk: Making Waves with a Global Employer Brand

Maersk: Making Waves with a Global Employer Brand

Maersk: Making Waves with a Global Employer Brand

Maersk, a global shipping company, came to PeopleScout for a talent advisory solution that would deliver on a diverse and digital-forward new global employer brand.

Situation

Think Maersk and you think container ships. Steel giants criss-crossing the oceans. You probably think dependable and trustworthy, but slow moving. What you don’t think of is digital trailblazer. But, when they came to us, that was precisely their goal.

Already leaders in global shipping, the Maersk group was about to undertake a huge transformation to take them to the next level of their business strategy. Their vision was to become a global integrator of container logistics and digitalization of the business was at the core of this big move. Maersk no longer wanted to be seen as a shipping company; they wanted to be seen as a leader in technology.

The issue was that they didn’t have the world-class capabilities in the business to fuel this tech revolution.

The brief: create an employer brand that:

  • Made transportation and logistics attractive to global talent in a way it hadn’t been before – competing with the likes of Microsoft and Amazon.
  • Attract diverse candidates (especially STEM and digital) with the innovative mindset to bring radical change.
  • Change perceptions of the Maersk Group away from solid, slow and paternalistic to dynamic and pioneering.

Solution

RESEARCH

The insight phase was intensive.

Understanding the organization, the many and varied brands, the core business areas, its people and the nuances across the globe was highly complex. It was also the key to creating an employer value proposition (EVP) that would turn heads among non-traditional candidates.

We ran a very diverse, in-depth and international series of focus groups and one-on-one interviews across the group and externally.

This allowed us to:

  • Understand the views and vision of senior leaders within the business.
  • Gain deep insights into the lived experience of professionals at various managerial, technical and operation levels.
  • Map the competitor talent market to identify specific territories that Maersk could own with regards to its proposition and messaging.
  • Develop a set of core messaging pillars that we validated with senior stakeholders across the globe before developing our EVP and recruitment communications campaigns.

THE CORE MESSAGE

Our EVP message aimed to inspire, motivate and challenge employees and candidates to be part of a career-defi ning, once-in-a-generation transformation. The result is an invitation and a two-way commitment striking the kind of pioneering, adventurous and fast-moving note that you simply wouldn’t expect from a business like Maersk. It also gave us a platform to tell stories that capture hearts as well as minds.

EVP message: Let’s go into the amazing

INTERNATIONAL RESONANCE

Because our audiences were very diverse and located all over the world, we created a series of five messaging pillars. Drawn from the key insights gained at the research stage, these pillars allowed our brand messaging to be flexed in order to speak to the motivations of individuals and talent groups all across the globe.

THE PILLARS

Pioneering
Candidate offer: Seize every new opportunity, pursue every experience and never be afraid to be the first.

Belonging
Candidate offer: Be open, be curious and bring your whole self to work.

Societal impact
Candidate offer: This isn’t just about the part you play in our business, it’s about the change you can make in our world.

Unfolding potential
Candidate offer: Jump in wholeheartedly and we’ll support and invest in you to be your very best.

Global citizens
Candidate offer: Broaden your horizons and make the world your workplace.

KEEPING IT ROBUST

Inspiring EVPs need strong foundations to stay inspiring. This is how the architecture of the Maersk employer brand all fits together.

MAKING IT REAL

This is how we took each of the pillars and turned it into a candidate-facing advertisement.

The Outcome

It’s still early days, but in the latest employer brand benchmarking, Maersk was delighted to see the impact the work was already having. A key measure is its ranking in The Most Attractive Employers List produced by Universum.

Maersk has seen its ranking improve. Our goal is to continue this momentum in each of the key markets and among each of the key talent segments.


At a Glance

  • COMPANY: Maersk
  • PEOPLESCOUT SOLUTIONS: Talent Advisory
  • LOCATIONS: Global with priority markets in India, the UK and Denmark
  • ABOUT MAERSK: With locations in every port in the world, Maersk is one of the largest container shipping line and vessel operators in the world.

Transport for Wales: Recruiting a Crucial Tax Expert

Transport for Wales: Recruiting a Crucial Tax Expert

Transport for Wales: Recruiting a Crucial Tax Expert

As Transport for Wales’ RPO partner since their inception, PeopleScout helped TfW find a Tax Accountant to support the management of their finances.

Situation

Transport for Wales (TfW) is on a mission: to deliver an integrated travel system across Wales and revolutionize travel. To achieve this, they quickly expanded their workforce in partnership with PeopleScout, their RPO partner.

They were now looking for a new Tax Analyst, a qualified VAT subject matter expert, to provide guidelines in line with legislation to help TfW reclaim VAT to reinvest into the transport network. This is a highly competitive sector, and the Tax Analyst needed specialty skills.

Solution

This was a particularly challenging role to recruit. There is a very small talent pool of qualified candidates in Wales. This market is competitive, and many candidates are reluctant to move jobs unless for a significant increase in salary. Plus, these roles are known for low turnover; tax professionals are risk-averse and require significant consultation before considering a new opportunity. In addition, the global COVID-19 pandemic was at its height—a climate that contributed to candidates’ reluctance to change jobs.

We adopted a fully consultative approach and took a detailed brief from the hiring manager. By using a blended approach of media, advertising across a number of well-known recruitment websites to drive applications, and hands-on sourcing of passive candidates.

Attraction did not produce results, so we doubled down on a thorough search of the passive market. Our specialist recruiter knew straight away when they found a candidate that would be a good fit for TfW. This candidate had worked as a tax expert for a similar government body, they understood government processes and they were a strong fit culturally for Transport For Wales.

Results

In total, we approached over 100 qualified professionals in South Wales and beyond. Our strategic passive candidate search produced an ideal candidate who has moved into the Tax Analyst role.

At a Glance

  • COMPANY: Transport for Wales (TfW)
  • ABOUT TfW: Founded in 2016, Transport for Wales (TfW) was set up by the Welsh Government to make sustainable travel a reality in Wales. Their multimodal, integrated transport network aims to increase the number of journeys on public transport by 40% by 2040.