Article: Navigating A Recession: How TA professionals can demonstrate their value to the company

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Navigating A Recession: How TA professionals can demonstrate their value to the company

The vital role of talent acquisition professionals becomes indispensable during a recession for an organisation’s survival and success. Here’s how!
Navigating A Recession: How TA professionals can demonstrate their value to the company

If you think about it, recruiting is like farming, and Talent Acquisition (TA) professionals are believed to be skilled farmers who know how to plant, nurture, and harvest the right crops. Just as skilled farmers understand soil, climate, and market demands to grow and harvest the right crops, TA professionals understand the company's culture, goals, and requirements to identify, attract, and retain the right talent. 

Without skilled farmers, crops would fail to grow, and without TA professionals, organisations would struggle to build a skilled and motivated workforce, leading to a significant loss of productivity and revenue.

Unearthing Hidden Gems: Invaluable contribution of TA

TA leaders are tirelessly working behind the scenes to source, screen, and recruit the best talent for the company. But their job doesn't end there; they also create a positive candidate experience, build relationships with hiring managers, and ensure smooth functioning of the recruitment process.

Without them, companies would struggle to identify the right talent. Their role is critical to the success of the organisation, essential in shaping the company's future.

That’s not all. They also play a vital role in enhancing diversity and inclusion in the workplace, mitigating risks associated with hiring the wrong candidate, improving employee retention, and developing future leaders.

They are often at the forefront of driving organisational change, advocating for diversity, inclusion, and belonging, and working to create a more equitable and inclusive workplace.

Without them, organisations may need to rely on external recruitment agencies, which can be expensive and the recruitment process may take longer, leading to increased recruitment costs.

Consequence of turbulent times: Talent acquisition treated as cost centre

Despite the critical role that TA plays in identifying and attracting top talent, organisations may view them as a cost centre and choose to let them go to reduce expenses in turbulent times. 

But TA must get a permanent seat at the table. This is because the mere thought of losing one's job can send chills down the spine. It's a distressing experience that can take a toll on a person's emotional and mental wellbeing. For those in TA, the possibility of being laid off during a recession is particularly a daunting prospect. They know that their role is critical to the organisation's success, and the fear of losing their job can create significant anxiety and stress.

Amidst the fear and uncertainty, TA must take specific steps to showcase their value to the organisation. They must find ways to prove that they are not just a cost centre but a critical asset essential for the organisation's survival. It's not just about securing their job but also about ensuring that they continue to play a crucial role in the organisation.

Steps TA needs to take during recession to demonstrate their value

Create a newsletter: During recession, communication is critical to ensure that the entire organisation is aligned with the organisation’s goals and objectives. TA can play a crucial role in maintaining an open dialogue by creating a newsletter for employees, which can serve several purposes, while having a significant impact on the organisation's success.

Benefits of a newsletter: 

  1. Keeping leadership in the loop: The newsletter can help keep the leadership team informed on the recruitment process, hiring freeze, and other HR-related updates. This information can help leaders plan and make informed decisions, avoid escalations, and ensure that the organisation is well-prepared to navigate a recession.
  2. Promoting referral program: Referrals can be an effective way to attract top talent, especially during a recession as a cost-effective way to fill open positions. By promoting the referral program, TA leaders can encourage employees to refer their friends and acquaintances, which can fill open positions quickly and efficiently.
  3. Keeping employees engaged: The newsletter can also serve as a way to keep employees informed about the latest news in the organisation, such as changes that have happened in the organisational structure or updates about the company's plans and objectives. 

By taking proactive steps to communicate effectively, TA can demonstrate their value to the organisation and ensure that they continue to play a crucial role in the organisation. Creating a well-designed newsletter with relevant content can keep the employees informed and engaged with the leadership team in the loop. Promoting the referral program can help the organisation navigate recession with greater ease. 

Attracting talent with skill-based employee communities

During recession, when the job market is highly competitive, it's essential to find innovative ways to attract and retain top talent. One effective way is by creating communities of employees based on their skills. By doing so, TA leaders can foster a sense of camaraderie among employees who share similar skills and interests.

Creating communities of employees based on skills can also help TA to segment their audience and send targeted referrals later on. For example, if there is a job opening for a role that requires a specific skill set, a TA leader can refer to the communities of employees who possess those skills. This approach can help them identify and target the right candidates, which can save time, effort, and resources in the recruitment process.

Another benefit of creating communities based on skills is to develop employee advocacy. When employees feel like they are a part of a community, they are more likely to share job openings and refer their friends and colleagues. This increases the organisation's reach and attracts the best talent, which can be particularly valuable when the organisation may have limited resources to allocate towards recruitment during recession.

Creative rewards for referrals

Recently, we asked around 500+ experienced TA leaders/managers to share insights on their referral program. And the results are in! From the most effective referral programs to the biggest challenges, this report is a valuable resource for the entire TA community to benchmark, improve, and learn from the best practices in employee referrals. 

TA professionals may get unique opportunities to explore new and creative ways to incentivise employee referrals. With a more competitive job market, employees may be more willing to refer top talent to their organisation in exchange for non-monetary rewards. By taking advantage of this opportunity, TA can experiment with creative rewards for referrals that go beyond traditional monetary incentives. It can include unique experiences or professional development opportunities, such as mentorship or skills training, as well as opportunities to participate in CSR initiatives or community events. By using these types of rewards during recession, TA leaders can gain valuable insights into what motivates employees to refer top talent and what types of rewards are most effective.

One way to give incentives that align with CSR is to allow employees to choose a charity or non-profit organisation that is aligned with the organisation's values and goals. This approach not only incentivises referrals but also encourages employees to support causes that are important to them.

To implement this approach, TA leaders could offer a list of pre-approved charities or nonprofits that align with the organisation's CSR initiatives. Employees who make successful referrals could then choose one of these organisations to receive a donation or grant from the organisation.

In the end, TA can execute their plan to stay valuable during recession by taking steps to build and strengthen their referral system. One such tool they can use is RippleHire, a default platform on which referrals run in the country. The platform's gamified employee referral portal helps companies transform their referral program from a reactive channel to a proactive sourcing channel, driving improved time to hire and the quality of hire. 

While it's true that during a recession, there may be fewer hiring needs, it's still important for TA professionals to put systems and processes in place to be prepared when the economy rebounds. This could include identifying new talent sources, optimising the recruitment process to reduce costs and increase efficiency, and building relationships with top talent. By taking a proactive approach, TA can stay ahead of the curve and ensure that they are ready to quickly fill open positions when they arise.

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Topics: Benefits & Rewards Consulting, Talent Acquisition, Employment Landscape

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