Our last WFA Blog dealt with what is being called the ‘Silver Tsunami’ and the impact that is having on employers as retirements take valued skill sets off the market. The State of Wisconsin has released its latest figures showing a total of more than 94,000 open positions across Wisconsin at this time. This includes all types of positions. That is coupled with a relatively low unemployment rate of 4.4% in Wisconsin again across all types of positions.
We have seen a lengthening of the recruiting process in our world, and we have seen a near-critical shortage of available candidates in certain specialized areas of employment. The indication is that this tight market may continue for some time to come, especially in certain specialized areas of employment. Given this somewhat unique employment environment, we offer some thoughts about how employers might avoid having open positions for long periods of time:
First, the days of having ample time to think about making an offer seem to be drawing to a close in many sectors. There are segments of the workforce where offers are now being seen at the time of the initial interview or very soon after that point. That is occurring in most sectors of employment even including certain of the more highly skilled positions, which is a bit unusual, and seems driven generally by the sparsity of candidates.
If you are able, when you see a good candidate, you may need to make a decision, at least by the following day or two. If you are able, you may find it beneficial to think of extending an offer to a candidate that has 80-90% of what you seek where you might’ve delayed prior to this time thinking you’d see a better candidate soon. The decision can be likened to a Hobson’s choice of “taking what is available or nothing at all” as that term is defined. Neither is particularly good but one is probably better than the other in any given situation. You are the only one who can make that decision. We’ll continue to seek the best candidates for each job order.
Tom Krist, President