As employee and employer expectations evolve, one major challenge recruiters face in the modern work landscape is ensuring the right talent sits at the right seat. That is the only way organisations can ensure both employees and the company truly thrive. And a fast-emerging dimension to talent management is the rising power of the gig workforce/flexi-staffing.
With the rise in gig work and demands for flexible, project-based staffing increasing across the board, especially in the IT sector, modern HR professionals are taking a skills-based approach to hiring and are turning to digital hiring platforms. These platforms act as an intermediary between employers looking for work and organisations looking to hire, and work exceptionally well for companies with specific expectations regarding skills, such as in the IT sector.
In this exclusive webcast, People Matters, in association with TalentOnLease, spoke to Govind Negi, Head of Talent, Europe and India, 3Pillar Global; Vijay Jamwal, Head HR, Biz2Credit; Pankaj Gupta, CEO, EnableX and Daya Prakash, Founder, TalentOnLease an online Tech Hiring Platform. The discussion centred around the changing employment landscape, the journey from the Great Resignation to mass layoffs, and how talent managers need to take the lead in exploring new hiring platforms.
“The recruitment landscape has really changed in the last five years – everything has gone digital! From an employee’s point of view, people have started preferring flexible work arrangements,” he said, adding that these two factors are really shaping the recruitment landscape.
“Organisations are being forced to look beyond their traditional hiring strategies,” Daya Prakash said.
Pankaj Gupta agreed with Daya Prakash, adding how the new “technology-first” generation, especially those who joined the workforce during the pandemic, has seen a very different side of work. “The workforce has changed and that’s how it will remain. The onus is on us to ensure that we adapt to the changing mindset of the workforce,” he added.
Govind Negi added to points made by the rest of the panel and spoke about how volatility in market conditions has been making it increasingly difficult for organisations to predict demand. “The learning from here is that we need to invest in technology and leverage hiring platforms to get access to the right talent depending on demand,” he added.
“Hiring is the pain point of everyone in recruitment! And one of the biggest challenges we face in recruitment is candidate back-outs. Many candidates in India accept the offer and on the day of the joining, back out,” Govind Negi explained, adding that solving this challenge perhaps requires a mindset change not only from the employee’s side but from the employers’ side as well.
Pankaj Gupta agreed on the challenge of employees backing out from joining after initially accepting the job offer, especially in start-ups. “Another big hiring challenge we as a start-up face is that employees today prefer to work with larger, more renowned brands,” he said, adding how getting good talent to come to you is becoming increasingly complicated.
“The offer-to-joining ratio is another metric that is keeping recruiters of today on their toes,” Daya Prakash said, adding that with online hiring platforms, a major positive is that recruiters have access to employment history of candidates. “Recruiters can have some risk mitigation by looking at the rankings and rating that these platforms have,” he said.
Skill vs Will
“The onus today is on the organisation to adapt to the demands of today’s generation – be it by providing flexible work, creating a learning ecosystem, restructuring total rewards and benefits to make them more employee-centric. We need to remember that at the end of the day, it is a buyer’s market and the buyer is the employee,” Pankaj Gupta said.
Vijay Jamwal brought forth the organisational point of view, saying that the employer’s expectations have also changed regarding the kind of skills they want in an employee and also how willing employees are to contribute towards the company’s growth. “What matters to an employee has also changed and they are more focused on job satisfaction from a learning perspective,” he said.
The talent conundrum: Start-ups vs. established companies
A very common debate in the world of work is whether startups are more coveted places to work or established organisations? While Pankaj Gupta spoke about how the employee mindset has shifted in the past few years and how hiring talent is a major pain point for startups of today, Govind Negi spoke about how today's hiring has come to be a challenge for the more established organisations as well.
Answering Pankaj Gupta’s question regarding how start-ups can attract the right talent, Govind Negi spoke about how startups need to package what they offer better. “Start-ups need to double down on the host of benefits they offer employees – be it the culture, flexibility, space to be more creative and innovate, absence of hierarchy.
It is no secret that one of the biggest changes in the world of work has been viz-a-viz employer and employee expectations. So how can HR leaders go about managing these expectations?
“There is a gross mismatch between the expectations of the modern employee and the modern employer,” said Daya Prakash.
“The crux is the alignment – there has to be alignment between goals and objectives of an employee and the organisation. Once this is achieved, you have a success story on your hands,” he said, further emphasising how it is critical for organisations to have a very clear view of why they are hiring someone, their expectations, and the key traits they are looking for.
Online platforms can be leveraged to achieve this alignment, along with the certainty of joining and trust and credibility that most modern recruiters are looking for, he said.
Vijay Jamwal further spoke of the importance of having clarity on the kind of people an organisation wishes to hire – identifying short-term and long-term talent needs. “Organisations need to also identify, say, for which skills contractual staffing will work best and then partner with service providers who give you those skills faster and more effectively,” he added.
Untethered access to talent
“The sheer access to talent that online platforms, combined with the rise of hybrid and remote working, provide is unprecedented. Online platforms don’t see any geographical boundaries,” Pankaj Gupta said. He further added that some of the capabilities that online platforms offer reduce the time to hire and increase overall efficiency.
“Online hiring platforms are cost-effective and offer a wider reach when it comes to talent. Another important aspect is that with such platforms, you can leverage a lot of data-driven analytics while creating your talent strategy,” Govind Negi said.
The final word
Everyone on the panel agreed that, despite complex challenges plaguing the recruitment landscape in today’s dynamic work environment, organisations can harness the power of online hiring platforms to not only create a more effective talent strategy but also craft a workforce that is efficient, skilled and ready to contribute towards organisational growth.