Friday, March 14, 2008

Storms in the workforce market

In this troubled times there is no better topic than the storm that is now in process on all recruitment markets.
I am struggling with hiring high quality individuals, both from a job skills point of view, as well as from a personal and soft skills point of view. And yes, the soft skills are really important in my activity, as we work remotely with most of the team members, and need to have good communication skills, really strong proactivity and forthcoming, rather than waiting for things to happen...
And it's actually pretty easy to wait for things to happen to you, but they will not do by themselves - and if you expect that the reality tells different from this, then you are working in a really closed environment. I've seen people that did not progress in their work, because nobody was available to tell them what to do next. Well, if you don't know what's next, go and ask, don't sit and wait.
But I was talking about the workforce market - it's really weired what's happenning here... A statistic says that all companies in the city I leave (a 2-million inhabitant) want to hire around 40% new personnel, while the unemployment rate is 1% (or below). Any idea how we can still do the plan?
Well - steal employees from other companies, expand the research in different locations, build new offices outside the city, in regions where people are unemployed, and happen to have the right skills. But then you run into different issues: the people in those regions might be right from a technical point of view, but their soft skills are not trained, so we need to grow them, and invest... and once you have invested and the person has reached the required level and can be productive... the worst case scenario happens: they are employed by other companies!!!
Is it the same in your location? Are you fighting the people turnover? How do you make your business grow in this environment?