The labor market is in a complex state, and the 2023 recruiting challenges are merely amplifying existing issues. Every report on talent acquisition seems to reiterate that:
- Four out of five employers are grappling with finding candidates who possess the necessary skills. (Manpower)
- The talent deficit is projected to reach an astonishing 85.2 million workers by 2030. (Korn Ferry)
- Unemployment rates are at their lowest in years. (Eurostat)
These facts highlight a growing sense of urgency among recruitment professionals, who often feel like they’re navigating a maze without a map. A quick remedy seems unlikely, intensifying the 2023 recruiting challenges.
Given these conditions, traditional recruitment tactics need a substantial revamp. While the talent and skills exist in the market, orthodox recruitment procedures are insufficient for finding them in the cacophony of the current job landscape. To overcome the 2023 recruiting challenges, we need to shift our mindset and be willing to alter our tried-and-true methods. In particular, we need to re-evaluate our hiring process to enhance the caliber of our hires.
The answer to some of these challenges could very well lie in adopting a skills-first hiring methodology.
The Intricacies of Skills-First Hiring
Let’s be clear: skills-first hiring isn’t a magic potion that will cure all of the 2023 recruiting challenges.
Although experts have advocated for a skills-centered approach for years, if you’re among the lucky 20% who don’t face hiring difficulties, you may not see the urgency. However, tackling 2023 recruiting challenges using a skills-first approach demands a considerable investment of time, precision, and diligence.
Why Skills-First Hiring is Crucial Amidst 2023 Recruiting Challenges
Traditional hiring practices have glaring limitations when it comes to genuinely identifying talent, which makes them increasingly unsuitable for resolving the 2023 recruiting challenges.Often, we use proxies like academic background, previous job titles, and company names to gauge a candidate’s capabilities. Although these proxies have merit, they also exclude many talented individuals who don’t meet these arbitrary criteria. Skills-first hiring aims to correct this by emphasizing what a candidate can actually do, rather than where they’ve been or what titles they’ve held.
Implementing Skills-First Hiring to Mitigate 2023 Recruiting Challenges
Embracing skills-first hiring means you have the potential to expand your talent pool exponentially. According to LinkedIn, a skills-first approach can yield up to ten times the number of suitable candidates.So, how can you integrate a skills-first strategy into your hiring process to address 2023 recruiting challenges? Here are some actionable steps:
Rethinking Job Descriptions:
- Remove degree requirements: A large number of roles require degrees, but not all skilled workers possess them.
- Skip defining years of experience: It’s often not an accurate measure of capability and could lead to age discrimination.
- Question the need for industry-specific experience: Many times, transferable skills are more valuable.
- Avoid searching solely by job titles: It limits your options.
- Employ related skills searches: Use tools like LinkedIn or ChatGPT to identify related skills.
- Utilize AI-based tools: Leverage the power of AI to generate more expansive search criteria.
Learn how ChatGPT is changing the recruiting industry.
Talent Advisory Considerations:
- Lead with data-driven insights: Use data to understand when a skills-first approach is the most effective strategy for particular roles.
- Provide real-world examples: Showcase existing employees who have succeeded without traditional qualifications.
- Focus on identifying missing skills: It helps in pinpointing exactly what you need.
Skill Assessments to the Rescue:
- Utilize online skill assessments: They can be a more equitable measure of a candidate’s capabilities. Also, with the emergence of generative AI, many firms are implementing the technology to increase speed and accuracy.
- Consider soft skills: Emerging platforms are capable of evaluating these.
- Don’t forget that skills can be taught: Focus on hard-to-acquire skills and leave the rest for on-the-job training.
Revised Interview Techniques:
- Implement behavioral interviews: Use them to dig deep into past experiences that showcase the needed skills.
- Investigate the process: Ask candidates to elaborate on how they would solve a problem.
- Incorporate situational questions: They can offer further insight into a candidate’s abilities. This is my favorite style of questioning because it lets me inside the thought processes of my candidates.
The 2023 recruiting challenges are pressuring hiring departments to evolve rapidly. Data from platforms like LinkedIn even suggest a shift is already underway, with fewer job postings requiring traditional four-year degrees.
By adopting a skills-first hiring approach, you’re not only expanding your talent pool but also enhancing the quality of your hires. It’s a holistic solution that addresses multiple facets of the 2023 recruiting challenges.
and Sprint Recruiting
Trent Cotton is a highly accomplished leader and strategist with extensive experience in organizational development, talent management, and business operations. With a strong background in HR leadership, he has a proven track record of designing and implementing innovative HR programs that drive employee engagement, retention, and business performance.
As an experienced executive, Trent has worked with some of the world’s leading companies, where he has led and supported HR initiatives across a broad range of functions, including talent acquisition, workforce planning, diversity and inclusion, performance management, and employee relations. He is also highly skilled in HR technology implementation, data analytics, and HR process improvement, helping organizations to optimize their HR operations and drive business results.
If you follow his blog http://www.sprintrecruiting.com or have read his book, Sprint Recruiting, you would experience his raw communication style, his ability to build and lead high-performing teams, and his strategic mindset. He is passionate about creating workplaces where employees can thrive and grow, and he is committed to helping organizations leverage the power of their people to achieve their business objectives.
In addition to his professional experience, Trent is actively involved in his community and has served on several boards and committees supporting education, workforce development, and diversity initiatives.
In his free time, Trent has written two books: “The 7 Deadly Sins of HR” and most recently, “Sprint Recruiting”. He will be releasing “The High Performing Recruiting Team” in the fall of 2023 and “FutHRist” in 2024.
He’s an active participant in the HR Industry and is asked to participate in roundtables or provide keynotes for many organizations. His blog Sprintrecruiting.com reaches thousands of readers and provides unique insights on a range of recruiting topics.