It turns out there’s good and bad news in this one statement: unemployment is very low. The good news is that with the lowest unemployment rate in 50 years, more Americans are working than ever before. The bad news is that talent to staff and grow a business is very scarce and is a top concern for business leaders across Wisconsin and beyond.
I had a great opportunity yesterday to sit with business leaders at a First Business breakfast seminar and hear both an overview of the current talent acquisition situation in Wisconsin and an informative panel discussion of key questions. Here are my takeaways from a strategist’s point of view.
There’s a plethora of data informing us about the current situation. We have unemployment rates and other data quantifying the current reality, discussion about how difficulties in finding qualified talent is not only stymieing growth but, in many cases, its impeding day-to-day operations, and anecdotal information about how some companies are using alternative approaches to securing the talent they need.
When you take your car into a mechanic because the motor is making a funny noise and it sputters and chugs when you try to accelerate, the mechanic bases his repair work on a common understanding or model of how all the engine parts fit and work for that particular car. Businesses that have sputtering approaches to talent acquisition that just aren’t working, need a revised or new “model” of talent acquisition for their particular company. There have been some hints that the new models are built around the concept of a Talent Experience (TEx) model which is very similar to a marketing and sales funnel. Here’s what I see emerging:
It’s clear that the labor market is becoming highly competitive. There are hints of new talent acquisition strategies out there but if you don’t have a specific, actionable one that is built on the new models for your specific business, you most likely will be left behind in the talent race. There are hints of some of the basic strategies and tactics but strategies need to be developed in house in a collaborative way to reflect aspirations, goals, and culture of each unique business. The talent acquisition race is heating up. Will you be competitive?