From the increasingly visible effects of climate change around the world to the general insanity of (local and global) politics to even the virtual lockdown of the entire planet in the wake of an unforgiving and seemingly unrelenting pandemic, “predictable” is probably the last word you would use to describe the last few years of your life. For those of us who consider ourselves more adventurous, the word used to carry a positively exciting sense of escape from our hum-drum lives. But now? We are simply happy to wake up and find that the world outside had not been turned inside-out whilst somehow trying to sleep off another burnt-out workday from home.
As it stands today, we at Equal2 can predict the future about as well as we can read the lines on your palm. However, the one thing we can do – and always have done quite well – is observe. All of the five trends we have listed in this article are already underway across business sectors in this (again, hopefully) post-pandemic era: would it be too hasty to suggest that these trends may only grow in popularity as we enter yet another black box of a year?
1. The prioritisation of internal hiring
In case you happen to be unfamiliar with the term, internal hiring is an umbrella term used to denote any organizational act of hiring their own existing employees for open roles. As you can imagine, this encompasses everything from lateral moves to even promotions. Its emergence as a post-pandemic recruitment trend also makes perfect sense when you really think about it: not only does it cost you far less than what it would if you had to allocate specific resources to hire fresh new talent appropriate for said position (and this is not even considering the losses you would suffer in the interim), but it also ensures enhanced employee retention – a highly important advantage to consider in a market as unpredictable as the current one.
2. Virtual hiring is here to stay
Virtual hirings over platforms such as Skype and Zoom had become quite literally the only way for most companies to recruit essential candidates in a locked-down world. However, it is now gradually shaping up to become a fixture of our post-pandemic New Normal due to the fact that it saves both time and money, especially when used in a hybrid fashion alongside physical hirings (remind you of something else that’s also set to stay in 2022?).
Expediency is the name of the game in the New Normal after all, especially for businesses already wary of nearly 2 years of turbulence. That’s not all, however: according to Swati Miglani of Ernst and Young, virtual recruiting has helped many companies “as an add-on in the recruiting processes. It improves diversity hiring and recruit [sic] the best talent across the country without any geographical barrier.”
3. Increased work flexibility
Remember the Black Death of Europe: better known as the Medieval Edition™ of the COVID pandemic? Well, apparently it caused populations to dwindle so severely across the entirety of the continent that erstwhile-ruthless feudal lords were eventually forced to give in to needs of the peasants that served under them – i.e., better pay, reasonable working hours etc. – due to the sheer scarcity of labour it gave rise to.
Our current situation is nowhere near as dire, but the fraught nature of the current labour market means that employees of all kinds and abilities will be able to ask their organizations for a host of different benefits, be it (again) better pay or (again) more flexible working hours. Speaking to Insider, Black Swan Careers founder Olga Etkina says that “[c]ompanies are going through their very own reckoning, as they have to come to terms with whether or not they are doing enough to keep employees happy and attract new talent”.
4. Recruiter upskilling
The onset of the pandemic resulted in everyone learning to adjust to the New Normal (OK, this is the last one – we promise). Of course, this naturally included recruiters who, believe it or not, also very much want to keep their jobs in the current era of uncertainty. This adjustment required many of them to learn a variety of new skills: be it learning to conduct virtual interviews, onboarding new clients virtually and even things such as talent advisory training.
With the world set to change in unexpected ways even in 2022, you can bet we’ll keep trying to keep up, especially in fields such as talent metric analysis and even increased mental health awareness.
5. Greater diversity in hiring
We know: this write-up has largely been quite depressing so far. How much positivity can wring out of a world like ours anyway? However, this pandemic has resulted in one very important and long overdue development in the world of hiring: the prominence of Diversity, Equality and Inclusion (DE&I).
While such trends have been gaining more and more prominence for over a better part of the past few decades, there are many reasons behind its increased popularity in the pandemic era. These include:
Even if one were to take the highly cynical view of organizations using their greater focus on DE&I for less-than-pure purposes, the end result of this change can only be a positive one for minorities of all stripes in our collective struggle to achieve better social justice. One step at a time, as they say.