The new year started off with yet another Covid variant, Omicron. Yet, we are still in a better place than we were 2 years ago, when the pandemic began. We have learned to adapt and to change. There are vaccines now. Scientists are learning more about how to keep us safe.   

Here at Frazee Recruiting, we have witnessed the pandemic’s impact on employment and hiring. Much of what we are seeing mirrors what has happened across the nation as a whole. These are the 5 areas where we have seen the biggest changes: 

  1. Job Seekers name “Work/Life Balance” as their #1 priority. They want flexible hours with hybrid work arrangements. According to a recent Harvard Business Review article, the future of work is hybrid with “52% of U.S. workers preferring a mix of home and office work.”   
  2. Wage Pressure. Salaries are a hot issue. The latest Beige Book report, released on Dec. 1, 2021, stated that “labor demand was strong, and supply limited, generating pressure to raise wages.” Hiring Managers and Talent Acquisition Teams have had to learn how to negotiate candidate salaries faster.  Some workers feel that salaries have not kept pace and that they are vastly underpaid. This is particularly true in Louisiana where the average hourly wage is traditionally below the average for the country. A statistic worth noting: the average hourly salary, for all occupations, is $23.68 in Louisiana vs $27.07 in the rest of the country.  
  3. Interviewing Processes have changed. Recruiters & Hiring Managers have had to adapt their hiring process to remote interviewing platforms.  Recruiters are now screening applicants via phone interviews, conference calls, and virtual interviews. Some companies have changed their hiring process by establishing on-boarding platforms. Innovative technologies have emerged to accommodate virtual interviewing. Frazee Recruiting added Spark Hire to its interviewing process in 2020 and Clients and Candidates have been pleasantly surprised with its ease of use. The convenience of being able to share a pre-recorded Candidate interview with a client has been the biggest plus.  
  4. Recruiting has become more difficult. The rate of qualified applicants applying to job boards has declined. With the “Great Resignation of 2021,” over 38 million people quit their jobs. Recruiters are having to “source” candidates as never before. And, searching takes time. Everywhere you look, companies are hiring. Some businesses in the Baton Rouge area have had to adapt their hours because they simply do not have enough workers. Sign – on bonuses have become popular. Recruiting has shifted from strictly local to an expanded area. In fact, location no longer limits the talent pool.  
  5. Vaccine requirements hard to meet. While Frazee requires their own internal staff to be vaccinated, they follow their client’s policies on vaccine requirements. Most job seekers are willing to “get the vaccine to get the job” but others are hesitant. There are plenty of people that will not vaccinate and opt to either remain unemployed or find an employer without the requirement. None of this is helped by the continual changes in government policy. While the January 13 ruling by the US Supreme Court blocked OSHA’s vaccine-or-testing rule for large employers., private-sector employers still have the right to require vaccines.  

Hopefully, we are through the worst of the pandemic. It certainly has impacted the way we recruit and hire. It is a testament to human nature that we have been able to adapt, accept, change, and grow.