The job market was breaking records before the pandemic hit, the economy came to a screeching halt, and millions of Americans were furloughed or laid off. Then, as the economy began to recover, many employees went back to work - but some didn't. Now, Americans are quitting their jobs at record rates.
It’s likely that labor supply issues will persist for the long term. Over the next 10 years, because of changes in the population, the U.S. workforce is only expected to grow slightly—0.7%—while the demand will increase.
Given this dynamic, employers should approach this challenge as a marathon – not a sprint. Responses should be multi-faceted and multi-year to ensure you are meeting the challenges of tomorrow, not just today. In the near-term, this starts with addressing the supply of talent – how to create a better value proposition to attract new workers and retain existing ones. What worked in 2019 won’t work in 2022 – COVID has fundamentally re-shifted worker’s expectations at work.
A reset in the value proposition may not suffice – employers must also think differently about how they can source new workers. Strategic workforce plans examining talent pipelines will be critical – and alternative sourcing strategies based on skill adjacencies can help. The supply of talent will only go so far, however, and thus employers must examine how they can reconstitute demand of their talent. Effective work design can help you get more from the talent you have.