Keeping Up with the Demand for Talent

How to fill the gap in your organisation's knowledge.

Is your business set to experience growth, but also suffer from a serious lack of skilled workers to aid this progression? You are not alone. Recent reports have found that many sectors, especially the technology and medical sectors are predicted to experience a high level of growth between now and 2020.

While this growth is welcomed by many organisations, three-fifths of them are anticipating difficulty in fulfilling the demand they have for specialist talent, with many citing Brexit to be the reason for their concerns. Lower unemployment figures and a higher number of job vacancies can mean that it’s difficult for employers to fill roles that involve in-demand skills such as engineers, tradesmen and IT specialists. With fewer people to fill these positions, organisations are having to look for other ways to fill the gaps in their skills and knowledge in order to keep up with their anticipated growth.

So, if you’re a concerned employer who doesn’t know how to tackle this issue, you’ll be pleased to know that there are options out there.

Firstly, you could consider trying to attract talent from outside of your industry. This is something that some employers might find terrifying and a big risk, but it could yield a whole host of benefits for your organisation. It can widen your pool of potential candidates considerably, giving you more options of who to hire. You can utilise the niche skills that someone from a different industry has to offer and take advantage of their fresh outlook and ideas. Obviously, there would need to be some retraining for these candidates, but if you’re willing to put the time and energy into it, it could give your business a competitive edge.

Cross training is another solution that many employers use to overcome skill shortages. Rather than searching for new candidates with specialist skills and knowledge, they focus on up-skilling their existing workforce which enables them to fulfil the duties of the roles they struggle to fill. Giving your employees the skills and knowledge they need to take on additional responsibilities can provide your business with more stability and flexibility, especially during unexpected events such as sickness or snow days. It can also make your employees feel more valued within your business which helps you to retain them.

Finally, there is also the possibility of hiring from varying age groups, namely millennials. Here in the UK, we are living longer lives, which also means that we spend more time working than ever before. This has caused some industries to have a predominantly aging workforce that have often worked in their sector for decades. Their experience is second to none, but these employees can sometimes lack knowledge of new practices and technologies. This is where millennials come in.

As they have grown up in a world ruled by social media and modern technology, millennials often have a greater understanding and knowledge of these areas in comparison to the aging workforce. So, if you’re lacking in the technological department, hiring a millennial could be the way forward. They also have more opportunities for further education, which can give them relevant and up to date skills and qualifications they can utilise within the workplace. 

A recent study also showed that millennials consider personal development a top priority when searching for a career, which shows their enthusiasm for work. Plus, they are usually a blank slate which can be moulded to suit your organisation’s policies and procedures. But even if you do choose to hire millennials, that doesn’t mean that your aging workforce are no longer necessary.

Buddy schemes can be used as a means of sharing knowledge and skills between older and younger generations within your organisation. This plugs the holes in your employees’ knowledge as both parties can learn a great deal from each other. This can also be beneficial when your older members of staff choose to retire, because their younger colleagues can take on their responsibilities with ease thanks to this training.

So, as you can see, there is no need to be so concerned about your recruitment difficulties during this exciting time of business’s growth. You just need to start thinking outside of the box to create a more diverse workforce that thrives on collaboration and the sharing of knowledge. This will benefit your business significantly not only but also well into the future too.

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Lauren Findlay

13th December

Hiring Advice