With our local candidate landscape tighter than over, finding the right candidates can feel like they are few and far between. It is increasingly evident that typical HR sourcing just won’t cut it and third party staffing and recruiting can provide an excellent solution to these local staffing challenges.

 Talent Shortages are at an ALL TIME HIGH!    

No surprise, huh?  If you’re actively looking to hire, and its taking forever to find the right employee – you’re likely not alone.

But you might be surprised about how serious the issue really is.  According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobs waiting to be filled is outpacing the number of employees hired by about 200,000 employees each month.   Current snapshot is that there are more than six million jobs that employers would like to fill right now, but can’t.

While talent shortages cross all sectors of our economy, healthcare, which is a big industry in the Puget Sound,  leads the way.  In fact, more than a third of projected job growth across all industries into 2024 will come from healthcare – no doubt driven by our aging population and increased access to healthcare insurance.

Job growth in the Professional and Business Services sector is close behind but in that sector the drivers of growth are targeted to come from the increasing reliance on the short term use of temps, contract workers and consultants (see trend # 4 which focuses on this trend).

In our local marketplace,  the industry that rivals healthcare in their need for talent is IT.  Application Software Developers for example are targeted to grow by 25-30% nationwide, even more here in Seattle.   Any job that touches a computer whether it be in manufacturing, healthcare, creative services, or marketing will increase in numbers, creating increasing challenges for Puget Sound employers who regularly recruit for this type of talent.   And yes, wages will continue to increase as candidate availability decreases – in some cases driving employers to look at alternative staffing options.

The Solution?  If you’re not already taking steps to strengthen your recruiting expertise, to position your company as an employer of choice,  to retain and develop your current employees, and to identify new and different ways to get work done, you’re already 3-4 steps behind.  When it comes to anything involving talent – whether its finding, attracting, or retaining employees –  you’re now in a very new and intensely competitive race!   And the stakes for winning couldn’t be higher – in some situations , a key to survival!

Is it better to retain employees by promoting them or paying them more?  It depends.     

According to a recent study by well known executive and professional search firm, Korn Ferry,  employees are quite split on what they prefer – a promotion or an increase in pay.   Of the 850 professional staff they surveyed, 54% said they’d take the pay increase without promotion and 46% said they’d take the promotion, even without a raise.

The Solution?  When it comes to motivating the professional employees on your staff, it looks like you need to ask before assuming that either a promotion or an increase in pay will keep them engaged.  A strategy of promoting employees, providing them with elevated job titles  that don’t quite reflect what they actually do,  can be costly.  Not only do you need to pay a promoted employee more,  but you may have inadvertently put them into a role they didn’t want and aren’t prepared to do.

Do you know what you need to know about turnover?    

A recent Workforce Turnover report from payroll service provider, ADP, showed that employers can use data to actually predict (and hopefully reduce) unplanned turnover.

Here’s what they discovered when studying turnover patterns of over 41,000 employers and 12 million employees:

Turnover, particularly the unwanted kind, can be a serious issue for employers in tight recruiting markets.  While unemployment is at a multi decade low, we know first hand that today’s employees are easy targets for competitive employers willing (and able) to pay more or offer more opportunity for advancement or promotion.

In the Greater Seattle marketplace, we find that a frequently sited reason for employees willing to change jobs stems from their desire to reduce a  long commute.  Working closer to home, avoiding spending time in long commutes is often a driving force in an employee’s decision to leave a job – even a job or employer they really like.

The solution?  Hiring managers need to stay in tune with the employees on their team – proactively identifying issues that if addressed, could keep an employee in place.  Flexible scheduling or periodic work from home privileges can go a long way to retain employees who might otherwise be tempted to look for a job closer to home.

Contract Employment has become a BIG TREND that is still leading the way! 

Things couldn’t be better for most third party temporary staffing agencies.

In 2017…

We see employers actually increasing their use of flexible or contingent staff as a recruiting strategy – a way to expand their recruiting resources with a ready pool of employees ready for the hire when the time is right.

In the big picture, the current increases in temporary and contract staffing are part of a larger trend that has been in play since the last recession (2007-08) when  the US Bureau of Labor and Statistics predicted that the number of employees working in temporary or part-time roles would out pace the growth in regular employment until the year 2020.

The Solution?  If you are a company or a hiring manager who has not yet fully embraced the trend toward more short term uses of talent, flexible work models, you may be caught short handed – particularly if your competitors are ahead of the curve and are getting the productivity and cost reduction gains that these alternative ways of configuring work can provide.

What do you think is keeping your boss up at night?  

A new study by Conference Board, suggests that the tight recruiting market is getting the attention of C Suite executives!  When asked to rank 28 “hot issues”,  their fear that their organizations are not attracting and retaining critical talent was their #1 concern – moving up 4 ranking points from the same study in 2017.

If you’re a hiring manager worried about finding and retaining the right talent, it look like you are in good company.  If you’re a Talent Acquisition Manager or Recruiter who actually has a set of solutions to your CEO’s talent concerns, enjoy the  job security!


PACE Staffing Network is one of the Puget Sound’s premier staffing /recruiting agencies and has been helping  Northwest employers find and hire the right employees for over 40 years.

A  3 time winner of the coveted “Best in Staffing” designation , PACE is ranked in the top 2% of staffing agencies nationwide based on annual surveys of customer satisfaction.

PACE services include temporary and contract staffing, temp to hire auditions, direct hire placement services, and Employer of Record (payroll) services.

To learn more about how partnering with PACE will make a difference to how you find and hire employees,  contact us at 425-637-3312 or e mail our Partner Solutions  team  at infodesk@pacestaffing.com. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *