5 Biggest Recruitment Challenges for 2024

5 Biggest Recruitment Challenges for 2024

Recruitment challenges in 2024 are bringing together the past and the future. With the growing influence of AI, the importance of hiring for soft skills and diversity, as well as balancing candidate expectations on flexibility and rewards against the needs of the business, hiring managers need to be building on their knowledge.

So, let’s jump into the trends we’re seeing in our recruitment services team and throughout our people consultancy, as well as some of the wider economic and market influences you’ll experience as a hiring manager.

1. AI and Recruiting

First up on the big recruitment challenges for 2024…Hiring managers are turning to AI and automation tools to streamline their hiring process.

Time-saving67% of hiring decision-makers are enjoying the benefits of timesaving by using AI tools for recruitment to generate job ads, suggest great interview questions and help with employer branding. 1 in 5 employers are using AI tools such as ChatGPT to help with recruitment.

Inclusivity – However, 35% of recruiters are concerned about the effect AI and automation tools is having on inclusive job hiring. A focus on keywords scanned by automation tools is excluding certain candidates.

For candidates this means they need to pay greater attention to their CVs, making this easy for scanning by technology and humans alike.

AI for job applicants – Job candidates are using AI to script CVs and answer interview questions. When writing with AI candidates often don’t use the right prompts or edit appropriately meaning their CVs suffer in quality as a result.

In the same way this makes it harder for hiring managers to gauge candidates through their CVs and the personality of these candidates remains hidden.

Human decision making – AI should not replace human decision-making, whether that’s the HR department, the hiring manager or a trusted recruitment partner. Rather it should be used as a tool for quality or appropriate intervention.

At Talk Staff, our recruitment services team use many human and tech-based ways to help you hire great candidates. We screen candidates in a very human way and pride ourselves in putting forward the best candidates for your business.

Explore how our recruitment services can help you hire your dream team

2. Gen Z Entering the Workforce

Next up on the recruitment challenges for 2024 we’re exploring Gen Z. Gen Z were born between 1997-2012 meaning many are entering the workplace and starting to take on people manager roles.

Age diversity – It’s important to avoid the stereotypes of ‘boomers’, ‘millennials’ and Gen X as well as also understanding the cultural differences of varying ages. When you help your people work together this can make a big difference, equally having age diversity in your organisation can lead to greater cognitive diversity too.

In early 2024 we’re running a free Age Diversity Espresso session on how people in the workplace of different ages can develop as teams together.

Attracting Gen Z for jobs – Some of the biggest motivators for Gen Z have been identified as ‘their impact on society’ (93%) work life balance and diversity & inclusion, both at 77% followed closely by pay and compensation (63%). It was found that this focus on money is due to the economic pressures on this generation.

Therefore, to attract rising stars, you need to look at salary benchmarking and make your DEI policies and employee benefits clearly visible on your website and social media.

Retaining Gen Z in roles – A staggering 83% of Gen Z consider themselves to be job hoppers. Employers are now less likely to be put off a candidate due to job hopping, especially with the recent upheaval of Covid where many switched jobs out of necessity. However, job hopping remains a problem for with rehiring costs and new starters of all ages typically taking 90 days to get up to speed.

You can help retain Gen Z employees by ensuring you offer clear progression, live and breathe healthy DEI policies and instil a sense of belonging and wider purpose.

Attract and Retain Employees of all ages – Whilst you attract Gen Z don’t forget to utilise your full range of employees and their generational and intrinsic knowledge through mentoring, whilst also paying attention to some of their own challenges from the menopause through to declining physical health.

Want to develop your whole team? We help through organisational development

3. Budget Constraints in Hiring

As the cost-of-living continues to cause financial stress to squeeze employers and employees alike, budgets for hiring great people are strained.

In fact, only 24% of HR survey respondents said hiring was their top priority in 2023 compared to 36% in the previous year.

Here are a few things to consider.

Time is money – Employers are often tempted to ‘try’ hiring themselves before using the expertise of a recruitment consultancy; this can set back your job hunt by 2-3 weeks if your first strategy doesn’t work. You can suffer in terms of quality or quantity of candidates and screening can be time-consuming.

Whereas the right recruitment partner will help your script enticing job ads, screen candidates and take on the hard work for you, vastly speeding up your time-to-hire too.

Hiring vs retention – There is often a vicious cycle in business where companies are quick to off staff reducing trust and damaging their reputation and reigning in L&D budgets which inadvertently leads to a higher employee turnover.

Businesses often forget to forecast the costs of hiring new teammates when you don’t retain your staff. It’s important to invest and upskill your existing people to reduce these costs.

A staggering 22 million UK workers don’t feel equipped with the skills they need over the next 5 years to unlock opportunities! Make sure you invest in your people. Our free espresso sessions are a good place to start.

Your competition – During the pandemic many companies froze their budgets whilst others took risks by investing in their people or even growing their team, many of these risks paid off.

Even when times are tough in your sector that doesn’t mean your competition are standing still. If your competition continues to hire and attract good people whilst your numbers remain stagnant or deplete you’ll find you’re left behind.

As a people consultancy we can help you evaluate your growth plans and your talent acquisition strategy to balance these considerations.

Want to explore strategies to retain great staff? – Speak to us today

4. Employer Brand Strategy

Don’t underestimate the importance of employer brand when it comes to hiring. 72% of recruiting leaders worldwide agree that employer brand has a big impact on hiring.

Here’s some of the top things to focus on:

Turn the hiring process into a selling opportunity – Many businesses focus on their needs in job ads and interviews, but remember that your best candidates have options. They need to see what’s in it for them or they will look elsewhere.

Online presence – As technology continues to evolve so does the ways candidates can research your business, from Glassdoor to interactive career pages. Make sure you stand out. Candidates can walk away from jobs due to outdated websites and poor employee reviews.

Easy processes and good communication – Word spreads. Make your hiring experience a good one, even for unsuccessful candidates. If they have a good experience they will tell other potential candidates or future customers of yours.

The role of HR and exit interviews – Some candidates are even reaching out to ex-employees to ask directly about their old jobs.

So wherever possible make sure you don’t burn your bridges when people leave and take the opportunity to capture any candid feedback on your company culture in your exit interviews.

Outsourced HR services are a good way to conduct an unbiased exit interview.

5. Skills Shortages – Recruitment Challenges 2024

Last up on our recruitment challenges for 2024, it’s skills shortages. Nearly 80% of recruitment and HR professionals said that poor quality job applications and skills shortages were the biggest challenges they faced when recruiting in the past 12 months.

Some industries will be further effected by the introduction of higher earning criteria for migration.

Technical skills – Standing out from the competition is key as well as using mentorship within your own company to make the most of high potential employees. Think outside the box by hiring in for attitude not just skill when those skills can be taught.

Soft skills – It’s important to recruit for soft skills as well as technical skills particularly with people managers, as highly engaged teams increase business profitability by 21% and a lot of this is heavily influenced by their line manager.

Ask questions at interview that reveal these soft skills, more on this later.

What candidates want – Whilst the power has shifted slightly towards employers recently the verdict is still out on the great resignation.

Employees are still keen to make the most of flexibility especially with many employers standing out with 4 day working weeks and other alternatives.

One emerging trend is that many candidates won’t take roles that aren’t hybrid working even if they are content to work in the office. Not offering flexibility is often seen as a wider indication of an outdated workforce culture.

Overall ensure that you find ways to attract great candidates and think hard about the extra pay and reward benefits that you can offer.

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