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War for talent? Challenge accepted.

If you read industry rags, you’ve probably heard all about “the war for talent.” HR pundits love to cry wolf about this phenomenon, which is really just a dramatic way of saying that some jobs are harder to fill than others.


Still, if you’re in a hiring position, it’s understandable that you worry whether you’re going to be able to find the right candidate for your next open role.


Knowledge is power. It starts with perspective on the current talent market. Here are a few notions to keep in mind.


Section 1 - The Gig Economy is Not Entirely Real


If you listen to the hype, the gig economy is reshaping the relationship workers have with companies. It's highly appealing to tap into talent without a long-term commitment. And for workers, flexibility and choice are a big draw.

But would you be surprised to hear that only 1% of the current US population is currently composed of gig workers?


According to the US Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the top sectors using gig workers are professional services, transportation and education, and healthcare. The number of gig workers will probably continue to grow, but not as quickly and dramatically as everyone predicted.


Takeaway: Hiring full-time employees is still relevant and critical in today’s markets.


Read Five Hiring Disruptions to Watch in 2019 on Glassdoor:

Section 2 - In the Age of Automation, Soft Skills Are More Important than Ever


LinkedIn's 2019 Global Talent Trends report names "soft skills" as the top trend transforming the workplace today. 91% of talent professionals say it's the most important shift.


“Wait, haven’t soft skills always been important?”


Yes, but increasing use of automation and AI in business means human-exclusive skills are much more important today: creativity, persuasion, adaptability, time management and collaboration.


Identifying soft skills during the interview process can be tricky, and the majority of companies struggle to do it well. Only 41% of companies surveyed have a legitimate method for it during interviewing.


Takeaway: Take the time to "assess how you assess," because any way you slice it, hiring for soft skills is more critical in the era of automation.


Read LinkedIn’s Global Talent Trends 2019 report:


Section 3 - Curiosity Killed the Cat, but It’s Good for Business


Companies often pay lip service to the idea of inspiring curiosity within their workforce, yet throw up barriers to prevent it.


A recent HBR piece highlighted some research into how curiosity is actually a very good thing in companies, because it leads to better performance. Yet, not surprisingly, "most companies stifle curiosity, believing it will create risk and inefficiency."



HBR gives 5 tangible takeaways to help organizations embrace curiosity within their ranks, including how to hire employees who have an abiding fascination with the world and how to effectively model inquisitiveness.


Read The Business Case for Curiosity in HBR:

We can help you fight the war for talent by honing in on the right candidates for your company culture and open roles. Our expertise in this domain is deep, but we also stay on top of current HR and L&D trends so we can be your go-to source for hiring and management best practice.


Contact us today if you’d like to chat about your hiring goals.

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