A recent report by MRINetwork found that 90 percent of recruiters now believe that we are in a candidate-driven market. Simply put, there are many open positions, a lack of qualified applicants and fierce competition to hire the best people for those jobs.
HR has traditionally been a slow to adapt industry, but that is no longer an acceptable approach in today's competitive and rapidly changing hiring climate.
New technological tools, the growing prevalence of social networking and an increasingly candidate-centered hiring environment mean that HR needs to be on the cutting edge. Some of the biggest challenges facing HR are the same as they have always been, such as hiring the best employees and holding on to top talent.
The changing face of the market introduces new obstacles that make talent acquisition, hiring and retention that much more difficult.
Here are just a few of the biggest human resources issues affecting most organizations today:
- Recruitment and Retention
According to one poll by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 59 percent of those surveyed suggested that retaining top talent would be among the top three challenges facing HR in the future.
An improving economy and expanding job market means that people have more options and often develop a "grass is greener on the other side" mentality. Younger workers tend to be swayed by factors such as corporate culture and job enjoyment, which makes the recruitment and retention process that much more complicated.
So how can HR professionals improve recruitment and retention?
The SHRM poll found that 40 percent of HR professionals believed that flexible work arrangements were critical for retaining top talent. Other important tactics cited included fostering trust and openness with employees, offering opportunities for career advancement and providing a stronger rewards package than competitors.
- Quality of Hire
An organization is only as good as its employees, which is why hiring the right people is so critical to the future of your business.
While quality of hire is the No. 1 metric for determining HR’s success, it can also be one of the trickiest to measure. There is usually no one-size-fits-all approach, but many HR departments look at measures such as turnover rates, 360 assessments, hiring manager satisfaction, job performance and cultural fit.
While organizations often spend a tremendous amount of time and resources on hiring talent, bad hires are still all too common. Some even suggest that as many as 46 percent of new hires will fail within the first 18 months of employment.
Quality of hire presents a major challenge to all organizations, but there are a number of strategies that can be used to get better results. Start by doing an assessment of your current quality of hire in order to look for potential pitfalls that can be avoided in the future.
Once you have a clear idea of how you are doing now, you can start looking for ways to improve your hiring strategy to obtain better quality hires.
- Reference Checking
Hiring professionals often identify reference checking as one of the most arduous aspects of their jobs – which is perhaps why so many simply skip this step altogether. That’s a critical mistake, because the reference check serves as one of the very best ways to identify talented candidates and accurately predict whether or not they will succeed in the role for which they are applying.
However, new tools and technologies are making this process both easier and more effective. Automated reference checking dramatically shortens the time it takes to check references and yields higher quality data on each candidate. Because HR does not need to waste hours upon hours calling references, hiring professionals can instead devote their valuable time to other important aspects of the hiring process.
Human resources will always face unique challenges as job markets change, new generations of candidates enter the workforce and the needs of organizations shift in the face of new technology. By being aware of some of the greatest challenges that HR faces today, you will be better equipped to deal with these issues both now and in the years to come.