The Top Recruitment Trends for 2020: Leaders Weigh In

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It’s a new year, complete with new (and enduring) opportunities and obstacles for staffing and recruitment businesses. The talent shortage, low unemployment rates, and economic uncertainly loom large, but most recruitment professionals are optimistic they can reach new heights in the year ahead. What are the opportunities awaiting in the year ahead? The Recruitment Innovation Exchange (RIX) asked some of the industry’s most innovative and influential leaders to weigh in on the trends that will shape 2020.

The leading minds agree: relationships and technology will be key for businesses to succeed. In the coming year, firms will be focusing their efforts on improving the client and candidate experience. Staffing leaders view the talent shortage as an incredible opportunity to leverage reskilling efforts and flexible working options to improve the candidate experience. Digital transformation strategies continue to take shape as automation pervades the industry and AI moves from nascent to practical. In a time of tumult and possibility, the recruitment business that can navigate change will be best prepared to thrive. Here’s what a few leaders had to say.

KIM WHITELEY

Director and Executive Recruiter

Mee Derby

What industry trend is going to have the most impact on staffing and recruitment businesses in 2020?

Work/life balance. Work is no longer a place. Our lives are on our phones, tablets, computers, etc. It’s more of a work/life blend–less on the where, when, and how, and more on the results.

What advice would you give to firms to capitalize on this trend?

Perform a constant review of your technologies. How modern and up to date are they? Make sure it’s easy for your teams to work from their phones, tablets, and laptops. The easier it is for them to access the systems they need to do their jobs, the more productivity you’ll see. Again, focus on the results.

TIM PRÖHM

Vice President of Digital Product Development

KellyOCG

What industry trend is going to have the most impact on staffing and recruitment businesses in 2020?

Digital staffing platforms. I believe that 2020 will be the year where we see a visible emergence of online staffing platforms that pose a significant threat to staffing and recruitment businesses. We have observed a massive growth of human cloud platforms over the past year where organizations can directly connect with freelance talent on a global basis. This trend will continue and spread into the traditional staffing segment where temporary workers can self-select jobs through an online platform and skip the interaction with a staffing agency.

What advice would you give to firms to capitalize on this trend?

Every staffing or recruiting organization needs to understand this trend and assess the opportunities that digitization brings. My strong suggestion is to constantly think about further process digitization and automation and to also develop partnership strategies with online staffing platforms. Traditional thinking that regards staffing and recruitment agencies as competitors needs to change in a digital economy as partnerships are crucial to achieve the critical mass to compete with venture capital-backed startups.

LAUREN GRIFFIN

Senior Vice President

Volt Workforce Solutions

What industry trend is going to have the most impact on staffing and recruitment businesses in 2020?

Reskilling and upskilling. I believe that in 2020 we are going to see a rising impact from reskilling and upskilling. The continued talent shortage we’re facing combined with the accessibility of online learning platforms makes this a trend that is quickly gathering momentum.

What advice would you give to firms to capitalize on this trend?

Although it’s important to have a strong understanding of the key skills sets your company is recruiting for today, it is critical to have a flexible, future-oriented plan. Talk with your clients, employees, and candidates and develop a solution that addresses areas where you identify gaps and opportunities.

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