Recession, Recruiting and Resilience: Creating Opportunities for Workforce Planning Success

With signs pointing toward a global recession, employers are preparing their workforces for what’s to come. This may mean cutting back on their investment in talent acquisition, delaying HR projects or even reducing their workforce.

While economic uncertainty can lead to difficult decisions for employers, it’s also important to recognize the opportunity it provides. This may be the perfect time to assess the resilience of your workforce and invest in workforce planning to make it fare better in the long run.

Is your talent acquisition program resilient enough to weather the storm? Here are four questions to ask to find out where you stand.

1. Is your employer brand and EVP still relevant?

If you haven’t updated your employer value proposition (EVP) in the last 18 months, it’s probably out of sync with the market and what candidates want. Now is the time to sense check if it’s relevant in 2023 and beyond. Does your employer brand work for a remote and hybrid workforce? Is it an authentic reflection of what you have to offer your employees?

Even if you’re not planning to hire actively in the near future, employer branding is also important for retention. Auditing and updating your brand will help you retain your current talent and ensure you’re ready to attract top talent in the future.

2. Is your hiring process working for remote and hybrid employees?

At the start of the pandemic, if you shoehorned your old in-person hiring process into your new hybrid or remote work reality and never looked back, it’s time to assess whether that’s really working for you. Remote work often requires a different set of skills than office-based work. Is your current process helping you assess those skills to achieve the quality-of-hire you need?  

Review the competencies and behaviors you need for each role to ensure they’re relevant for hybrid or remote employees. Now is the time to update job ads and evaluate your assessment process to ensure they are in tune with the success factors that drive your business now—instead of those that drove success pre-pandemic.

3. Are you achieving your DE&I recruitment goals?

While you may not be actively hiring, now is a good time to engage with diverse communities to ensure candidates from underrepresented backgrounds make up a significant portion of your talent pipeline when you’re ready to ramp up hiring again.

Increase your visibility in diverse communities via campaigns or event sponsorships. Look into your diversity analytics to understand what’s working and what’s not when it comes to sourcing and hiring your target audiences.

4. Is it time to consider RPO?

Now is the time to re-evaluate how you’re going to market for talent, whether via an internal talent acquisitions team, staffing agencies, recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) or a hybrid model. Work with your procurement partner to scrutinize your spend and evaluate your options to streamline and minimize risk—including standardizing with one global RPO partner.

Just because you’re not hiring at the same volume you were before, doesn’t mean outsourcing is out of the question. Recruiter On-Demand or project RPO engagements offer flexible solutions for targeted hiring needs. An RPO partner can also offer value-added talent advisory services like market insights, employer branding, assessment services and more. Plus, once engaged, your RPO partner will be on tap to hit the economic recovery running and scale up for your hiring surge.

An economic slowdown is not the time to put your talent acquisition strategy on the back burner. Use this time to take stock and get prepared so you’re ready to bounce back faster. You’ll be able to beat your competition and create a resilient workforce that’s ready for whatever the future has in store.

Want more insight into the future of work? Check out our ebook, Destination 2030: 10 Predictions for What’s NEXT in the World of Work.

Civil Service Fast Stream: Boosting Diversity with a Bold New Influencer Campaign

Civil Service Fast Stream: Boosting Diversity with a Bold New Influencer Campaign

Civil Service Fast Stream: Boosting Diversity with a Bold New Influencer Campaign

As one of the largest employers in the UK, the Civil Service doesn’t struggle for applications for its Fast Stream graduate program. However, as the entity that supports the government in implementing policies, it fights against perceptions that it only employs people from elite backgrounds. The Civil Service Fast Stream turned to PeopleScout for a bold new recruitment marketing campaign to improve diversity amongst its early careers talent.

3,200 + Increase in Applicants from Diverse Backgrounds
18,056 Views of Influencer Video on YouTube in Less Than 48 Hours
351,304 Impressions Across Social Media via Nano-Influencers


The Fast Stream aims to be the most inclusive graduate scheme in the UK and has a goal for the diversity of its workforce to help ensure that every government department reflects all of the communities they serve. However, research they commissioned revealed a misperception, particularly amongst those within underrepresented diversity groups, that the Civil Service Fast Stream represents the elite and is not diverse.
Whilst they weren’t in need of more applicants, they needed to increase the diversity of their candidates.

They turned to PeopleScout for a Talent Advisory solution that counteracted the perceptions of the Civil Service as being “stuffy,” “outdated” or “inaccessible.” The campaign needed to show the Civil Service Fast Stream as accessible to all graduates, regardless of their background, and increase representation of applicants from specific diversity groups to better reflect communities in the UK.


Taking a Cue from Consumer Marketing

Given the high number of applications the Fast Stream receive year-on-year, and the campaign objectives to diversify them, we made the strategic decision not to proceed with a traditional graduate media campaign.

Instead, we turned to online influencers.

While widely used in consumer marketing, influencer marketing is relatively new to the recruitment space. It was certainly innovative for the Civil Service and definitely not one our target audience would expect them to use.

Finding the Right Influencer

Identifying the right influencer, with the relevant following, would help us to:

  • Increase credibility with underrepresented groups
  • Remove perceived barriers around government work and the type of people who can get involved
  • Ask the right questions—those on the minds of the target audience

We found Vee Kativhu, an author and influencer who fit these criteria. Vee started her YouTube channel after getting into Oxford University and realizing that, as a black woman, she was a minority. She uses her platform to help those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds get access to the best information and advice so that anyone can achieve their dreams, no matter their background.

Continuing our theme of telling real-life stories, Vee spent a day with three Fast Streamers and produced a “day in the life” video, which she posted to her YouTube channel with over 250,000 subscribers. She also promoted the video through her Instagram and LinkedIn profiles.

We also engaged 12 diverse nano-influencers, with targeted followings, to reshape and share the video among their networks—further expanding the reach.


The campaign boosted applications from their target demographics by over 3,200, including significant increases in interest from candidates from ethnic minority backgrounds, from lower socioeconomic backgrounds, from the LGBTQ+ community as well as those with disabilities.

Vee’s video received 18,056 views in less than 48 hours. It went on to achieve over 36,000 total views with over 1,200 likes. Over the four-week social media campaign, Vee and the nano-influencers achieved a combined reach of 351,304 impressions and 2,436 engagements.

“Such an amazing video, Vee! Super informative, and I love the positive approach to a more diverse Civil Service.”

YouTube comment

By taking an innovative approach to reach their target audience, the Civil Service Fast Stream received a cost-effective campaign that delivered on their diversity recruitment goals.

“Our new attraction strategy, particularly in the innovative use of working with influencers, really captured our vision of a skilled, innovative and ambitious Civil Service equipped for the future—one that reflects the country we serve.”

Talent Acquisition Leader at the Civil Service

“I love the new look and feel of Fast Stream attraction, especially as it’s generating feedback that ‘you don’t normally see this kind of thing in the Civil Service.’ Bold, different and refreshing.”

Talent Acquisition Leader at the Civil Service


  • COMPANY: The Civil Service Fast Stream
  • ANNUAL HIRES: 1,000+
  • ABOUT THE CIVIL SERVICE FAST STREAM: The Fast Stream is an award-winning graduate program for the Civil Service, developing talented, high-potential people to become future Civil Service leaders. Annually, the program recruits approximately 1,000 people from around the UK across 15 different leadership and specialist development schemes.

Global Talent Acquisition Strategy: Time-to-Hire Cut in Half

PeopleScout Cuts Time-to-Hire in Half with Global Talent Acquisition Solution for Manufacturer


PeopleScout Cuts Time-to-Hire in Half with Global Talent Acquisition Solution for Manufacturer

A global manufacturer of engineering solutions turned to PeopleScout for global recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) to fulfill their need for highly specialized, hard-to-find industrial engineering talent at their manufacturing sites, innovation centers and service centers across 16 countries.

50 % Average Reduction in Time-to-Hire
16 Countries & 9 Languages
16 Countries & 9 Languages
Scope Expanded After Exceeding Hires Target
Scope Expanded After Exceeding Hires Target

Scope & Scale

The manufacturer engaged with PeopleScout for a global RPO solution to make 150 hires for over 30 of their sites across 16 countries including Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Poland, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.

For most of their hires, they were seeking specialty talent with expertise in engineering and industrial design. These skills help build equipment for businesses all over the world that focus on chemicals, air and water treatment, mining, pharmaceuticals, marine, construction and other industrial applications.


The client came to us after their previous RPO provider failed to deliver on the manufacturer’s global talent acquisition challenges. With some requisitions still open after 500 days, many of their site managers had taken recruitment into their own hands. Each manager had their own approach which resulted in a disjointed candidate experience and high levels of frustration for hiring managers and internal stakeholders. The global talent acquisition leader had very little visibility into time-to-fill and cost-to-fill metrics from country to country and wanted to see a consistent process across all regions that showcased their employer brand. 

The manufacturer also had growing concerns about the future of their labor force. With the average age of an engineer in the mid-50s, a huge portion of the global engineering workforce is due to retire in the next 10 years. The client needed to get ahead of this by recruiting talent with specific engineering skills to prevent a future talent gap.

However, engineers are highly sought after, with 63% of European manufacturers indicating the engineering skills shortage is making it harder to find qualified workers. The manufacturer needed candidates with unique experience in mechanical engineering and automation and who also matched their language requirements which varied by country and role. So, attracting these rare engineers—and convincing them to make a move—meant we had our work cut out for us.


Our diverse, multilingual and multicultural delivery teams in our Bristol and Krakow delivery centers plus remote teams got to work executing an end-to-end RPO solution. They sourced, screened and evaluated candidates in English, Swedish, German, French, Italian, Polish, Hungarian, Portuguese and Spanish.

Using Labor Market Insights to Inform Strategy

With competition from other well-known, international companies in certain markets, some roles were particularly challenging with over 200 similar open positions across competitors in one location alone. The PeopleScout Insights Team was commissioned to conduct in-depth research across markets and uncover potential candidate motivators that would give the organization a competitive edge.

In one case, our market data indicated that the labor pool for engineers in Czech Republic is small. So, we approached the client with the idea to expand the geography of our search to include candidates who lived across the border in Poland who could commute. By doing this, we filled business-critical automation engineer roles that saved their productivity levels. 

Global Process Meets Local Expertise

We created a global process to meet the requirements of the global talent acquisition leader and then worked with hiring managers in each region to adjust our approach to account for nuances like culture, job role and labor market across their sites.

Applying our team’s deep regional expertise, we adapted our strategy in each location, using the appropriate databases, job boards and online and offline marketing tactics to reach the right candidates for every role in each country. For example, in smaller cities, we knew it was less likely that blue-collar candidates would be seeking employment via online channels, so we took out ads at bus stops.

For other roles, we increased awareness of organization’s employer brand through targeted recruitment marketing efforts on job boards and social media. We also partnered with local universities to get in front of students who were looking for their first jobs after completing their studies. 

Talent Pooling with a Focus on Diversity

Because most engineers in Europe aren’t actively looking to change jobs, our recruiters found most success through proactive headhunting. By engaging directly with passive candidates via social media, email and phone, they filled many existing requisitions and created talent pools for future vacancies, which reduced the overall time-to-fill.

Since women remain underrepresented in engineering fields across Europe, the manufacturer put great importance on increasing the number of women engineers they hired. In addition to adjusting the verbiage in job descriptions to make them more inviting to a wider variety of candidates, our recruiters paid special attention to reaching out to women by targeting online groups for women in engineering and women in tech.


In the first year, we surpassed the initial target of 150 positions to deliver 245 total hires across 30 sites with a quarter sourced through proactive search and engagement. We filled the 500-day-old roles and reduced the time-to-hire by approximately 50% on average through our talent pooling efforts. In the process, we won over sceptical stakeholder groups, including the client’s EMEA engineering leadership. In the second year, we’re growing our partnership with over 300 hires projected.

In one instance, we were asked to source specialist inside sales talent. These individuals needed IT experience, manufacturing experience and to be fluent in German. With such specific requirements, advertising wouldn’t have worked, but because of the talent pool we built, we filled these two positions in less than three days.

“We have forged an excellent relationship with the PeopleScout team. They fully understand our challenges and needs and are able to meet our recruitment requirements in an efficient and professional manner.”

– Talent Acquisition Manager


  • COMPANY: Global Manufacturer
  • PEOPLESCOUT SOLUTIONS: Recruitment Process Outsourcing
  • LOCATIONS: Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Poland, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom

Supporting Service Members with Career Counseling for a Major Retail Chain

Supporting Service Members with Career Counseling for a Major Retail Chain

Supporting Service Members with Career Counseling for a Major Retail Chain

A major multinational retail chain partnered with PeopleScout to support its counseling program for transitioning members of the military, veterans, military spouses, and National Guard and Reserves who are looking to take the next step in their career.

Dedicated career coaches for all program participants

Customizable career paths for participants 

Virtual intake meetings and ongoing calls


This retailer has partnered with PeopleScout since 2013 to support its veteran hiring initiatives. In 2013 when the program launched, veteran unemployment was higher than civilian unemployment. PeopleScout supported the client with direct placement, helping veterans honorably discharged on or after Memorial Day 2013 to find jobs at the retailer. The spouse component was added in 2018.

In 2019, while the veteran unemployment rate had dropped to just under 3%, the retailer was aware of the challenges that military service members were still facing when transitioning to civilian employment. The client wanted to reinvent the program to put an emphasis on career coaching and counseling for all service members to help them apply their leadership skills and teamwork experience to new careers.


The new program, which officially launched in May 2021, broadens the umbrella of the program to include veterans of any era and actively serving members of all branches of the military, military spouses, and National Guard and Reserves as well. It connects program participants to a plethora of resources from various organizations that have been vetted by the client.

When a new member registers for the program, PeopleScout assigns them a coach who helps facilitate the transition into civilian work. The PeopleScout coach schedules a virtual coaching session with the participant to perform an initial intake. This intake assesses skills, helps identify goals and determines the time commitment they can make to the program.

From there, participants confirm three paths: employment, education, or entrepreneurship.


PeopleScout career counselors help participants assess their strengths, build their resume and translate their military experience in a way that it applies to the civilian workplace. They also help service members and spouses find opportunities that match their career goals—whether that means employment with the retail client or another organization.


PeopleScout coaches help participants get the educational foundation they need to reach their overall career goals.


PeopleScout helps connect participants with the right resources to start their own businesses.

This emphasis on career counseling allows the participant to drive the program at their own pace and use their coach as much or as little as they like. Service members and spouses can take what they want from the program as they build their future.


  • 3,500+ registrants since program launch


  • COMPANY: Multinational Retailer
  • PEOPLESCOUT SOLUTIONS: Recruitment Process Outsourcing, Talent Advisory
  • ABOUT THE RETAILER: This U.S.-based retailer operates in 24 countries with 2.3 million employees. The organization has a rich history of supporting and hiring veterans and their spouses.
Download Case Study PDF

Women in Manufacturing

Women in Manufacturing

Women in Manufacturing

A leading manufacturer turned to PeopleScout for a unique, technology-powered candidate attraction campaign to increase women in their workforce.

A PeopleScout manufacturing client operates in an industry that has historically been male-dominated, but the client wants to change that perception. The manufacturer partnered with PeopleScout with the goal of increasing the number of female applicants and hires.

PeopleScout worked with the client to develop the Women in Manufacturing campaign. PeopleScout interviewed nearly 20 women who work in roles across the company and who love their jobs. Using this information, PeopleScout built out candidate personas to target women interested in the industry, and created a campaign featuring real women who work for the client.

Using Affinix™, we built a dedicated landing page and talent community for female candidates. On International Women’s Day, the four-week campaign, Women in Manufacturing, launched to showcase the woman-friendly, inclusive culture at the company. The campaign features employee spotlights, videos and stories to showcase how women are integrated into the culture of the company and integral to the company’s success.

The campaign features profiles of women who work in a range of manufacturing positions.
Employee profiles feature advice and insights for female job candidates.
The customized, targeted landing page was created with Affinix. 
The campaign is featured on the company’s social media accounts.

“To make a lasting change, you need to consider both your stakeholders and the sustainability of your effort. Throughout the process of brainstorming, designing, and executing our Women in Manufacturing recruiting campaign, the team has balanced the technological, brand consistency, and tactical challenges to produce a thoughtful program of materials to support us. Through rapid, data-based decision making, they have quickly adapted to the fluid needs on an ongoing end-to-end recruiting campaign.”

– Matt W.

Director – HR Strategy, Analytics, & Talent Acquisition


  • COMPANY: Manufacturer
  • PEOPLESCOUT SOLUTIONS: Talent Advisory, Affinix
Download Case Study PDF

McKesson: High-Volume Veteran-Focused Hiring Solution

McKesson has engaged with PeopleScout for eight years. Over the course of our partnership, PeopleScout has managed hiring for a variety of positions including professional, managerial, sales, finance and administrative roles. PeopleScout’s engagement includes a specific focus on hiring veterans in all positions to support McKesson’s goal to become known as a top employer for veterans and military spouses.

Scope & Scale

One of the world’s largest healthcare companies required a high-volume hiring solution to fill positions across multiple departments. Positions in scope include management roles, finance, sales and administrators. The RPO solution required special emphasis and priority on improving diversity and veteran hiring initiatives.



PeopleScout created a Veteran Talent Community which provides McKesson with access to thousands of active and passive veteran job candidates and opens the door to additional job opportunities for veterans.


PeopleScout helped to administer a customized McKesson veteran careers webpage to attract and process veteran candidates.


Veteran-targeted marketing and sourcing strategies were developed including improving relationships with more than 800 military organizations, posting jobs on veteran job boards and social media marketing.


PeopleScout provides ongoing training and education for members of the recruiting team to ensure military resumes are matched with civilian job requirements.


A veteran priority screening process was created to identify and prioritize veteran candidates.


PeopleScout hired a Navy veteran to lead the D&I initiative on the recruiting team.



In 2019, PeopleScout managed more than 3,000 hires across North America.


PeopleScout provides a diverse slate of candidates on 95% of all requisitions.


Veteran hiring improved from 3.3% to 8.6%.


Targeted veteran recruitment and marketing strengthens McKesson’s veteran employment brand, resulting in McKesson being recognized as a leader in veteran hiring by national media outlets.

McKesson’s Veteran Talent Community, veteran landing page and recruitment marketing strategy are supported by PeopleScout’s proprietary talent technology, Affinix.

Openreach: Recruiting for Hard-to-Fill Roles at Scale

Openreach approached us to help recruit for hard-to-fill trainee engineer positions. Our postal code-by-postal code attraction and simplified recruitment process enabled Openreach to fill all roles and to increase applications from diverse candidates.

Scope and Scale

Openreach approached us to support them with the delivery of 413 trainee engineer hires for hotspot locations in Southern England. These were roles in hard-to-fill locations, where Openreach’s traditional approach hadn’t been able to generate sufficient applications.


Openreach recruits 3,500 trainee engineers on an annual basis, with a large proportion of hires made in areas with strong candidate pipelines. However, hiring in Southern England and London proved challenging. So, they were looking for a targeted attraction campaign, along with an efficient recruitment process, to help them complete 413 hires in these areas in three months.


  • Microsite hub
  • Bespoke, postal code-tailored attraction program
  • Simplified application process
  • All roles filled with increased diversity interest

We worked with Openreach to scope and build a microsite to act as the hub for trainee engineer hiring. 


Deploying a bespoke attraction program by specific postal codes allowed us to be highly targeted in driving candidate pipelines. All attraction materials drove candidates to the microsite. 


In addition, we developed a light-touch simplified recruitment process, which included video interviews and a one-page online application. 



From sign-off to implementation, the service was set up, configured and ready to go live in six weeks – and all 413 roles were filled within three months. 


Nearly 70 percent of applications in London postal codes were from diverse candidates, with this translating to a 53 percent offer rate. 


Openreach has said that collaborating with us has been “transformational,” and we’re now working with them on 150 additional hires.

End-to-End Recruitment for Leading North American Tire Brand

A leading North American tire brand was experiencing an alarming rate of attrition in key retail positions, making it difficult to provide the level of service excellence the brand’s customers have come to expect. To help solve its unsustainable employee attrition issue, the client partnered with PeopleScout to efficiently facilitate more than 10,000 annual hires of automotive technicians, management and sales positions and standardize its retail recruitment processes company-wide.

Scope and Scale

Full-life cycle recruiting services needed for 10,000 U.S. hires annually. Skills and positions included: technicians, customer service, sales and management.


The client was facing a 50 percent turnover rate at retail locations and lacked a uniform hiring procedure, resulting in a disjointed process and poor quality of hire. Without the appropriate staffing of technicians, customer care suffered, causing a reduction in the client’s revenue in their retail operations. 


  • Screening & block interview scheduling efficiencies
  • 10,000 Hires in the first year of the engagement
  • Reduced employee turnover
  • Hiring diversity
  • Transparent Reporting

The partnership was designed to improve turnover rates for technician and retail positions, create a standardized retail recruitment model and provide consistent OFCCP compliance and standardization.


PeopleScout deployed a time-efficient screening process focused on the quality of the candidate, with a guaranteed response from recruiting teams within 48 hours of application.


To help source and engage more diverse candidates for the client, PeopleScout developed a comprehensive network of community organizations for partnered recruitment. 


Collaborative relationships between our retail recruiters and the client’s area managers were fostered by in-region placement of PeopleScout recruiters.  


Continuous improvement was driven through transparent reporting and analysis for the client’s executive and field leadership.



The client’s technician turnover rate has improved by 5 percent and retail turnover by 6 percent. 


PeopleScout hired 10,000 employees in the first year of the engagement.


Hiring diversity improved by 40 percent, including an increase of 2 percent for veterans and 6 percentage for female hires.