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Critical Talent Shortages Emerging Due to COVID-19

30th Jul , 2021

To deliver on your strategic and financial performance in these challenging and yet opportunistic times, you must get the best people on board. Yet this is an increasingly difficult task, as crucial talent shortages are emerging.

As restrictions on peoples’ movement have increased with the pandemic, particularly between countries and interstate, this has created skills shortages of critical staff in many impacted geographical locations. These localised skills shortages will continue until free movement of people can resume after vaccinations against COVID-19 have hit critical uptake levels. This improvement will only happen when there is broad willingness and confidence by people to return to travel between countries and interstate for their employment.

Currently, International Business Mentors is seeing difficulties in recruitment of top talent as being an emerging problem amongst many clients. The areas in which these shortages are apparent are in most disciplines and management levels, but the most critical include medical staff and IT – particularly across IT Security / Cloud technologies, Software Programmers, and System Engineering.

What Contributes to Talent Shortages?

People shortages are a global problem, and there are several factors influencing this trend:

  • COVID-19 has prevented or slowed the import of qualified people from overseas or interstate
  • Movement between countries and interstate has been affected, with border closures making it impossible to travel
  • Many candidates have lost confidence to move because of potential outbreaks and consequent tightening of restrictions
  • Costs of travel and relocation are high due to the low level of travel
  • Additionally, many critical job requirements that relied on overseas or interstate skilled migration are becoming even more difficult to find candidates for

Why Your Talent is So Important

We have previously discussed the importance of recruiting and retaining talent. Your best people are the backbone of your business; you want to recruit the best and keep them with you. Not only will your own business benefit, but you also need to keep ahead of your competitors. Getting the wrong people can lead to a lost market position and an erosion of competitive advantage. There’s also a direct cost in getting a hire wrong: It is estimated to cost up to $100,000 to hire the wrong person, once training and on-boarding costs are considered.

Keeping your best people in the face of increased head-hunting due to the shortages of talent must be considered a priority for all key people. See our article for tips: Using Positive Reinforcement to Improve Talent Retention.

Also, re-training key staff is part of improving performance and helps retain your key talent. Read the following article to learn more: The Importance of Retaining Top Talent.

In this competitive talent environment, you should consider using excellent recruitment companies to assist you in the selection, identification and attraction of key potential candidates from the job market into your organisation.

What Our Business Mentors Have Learnt

Feedback from our business mentoring and business coaching clients has shown that last year was an incredibly challenging time for trying to attract and find good top talent. The need for new talent has also been fuelled by the strategic need by many businesses to shift (or pivot) into new areas because of COVID-19 into new and innovative emerging business categories or directions.

With talent scarcity, you will find it increasingly difficult to get the right people. You must have the right expertise in recruitment procedures. Our business mentors have found that it is worthwhile for many businesses to invest in the engagement of a reputable recruitment firm with consultants who have speciality experience and a proven network of top talent in their field.

The service provided by recruitment firms, in most cases, far outweighs the cost of such services and improves the success in getting the right people. The right people have many upside benefits for the organisation, including strategic delivery and performance.

To find out more and benefit from the support and guidance of a business mentor or business coach, contact International Business Mentors today.

Christine Cartney, March 2021

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