The shift has been happening for a while.
Candidates are finding themselves in the driver’s seat of the job market, giving them the power to be more selective in their career moves, and more options when researching the roles and directions best suited to them.
As a recent graduate, I see this trend amongst my peers as well and I can attest to the ease with which we are able to gain access to information about different organisations and how selective some of them can get when deciding who to work for. Research is also showing that 50 percent of employees plan to stay at their current company for only two years or less.
This got me thinking: Are Talent managers in Australia making adjustments to cater to a more well-informed and mobile market?
Australasia sets candidate experience in its sights
One thing that definitely seems to be happening in Australia is the increased emphasis on the importance of candidate experience. It is one of the buzzwords I keep hearing since I started working at the ATC. Any number of articles will show that everyone from Talent Acquisition pundits to major organisations are putting candidate experience at the forefront of their recruiting practises.
The increasing presence of Talent Board here in Australasia, a non-profit organisation focused on the elevation and promotion of a quality candidate experience, is another sure sign of Talent managers shifting priorities. With more local organisations participating in their benchmarking programme, this certainly bodes well for the industry, which is developing a stronger values proposition for its newer candidates.
What does it all mean?
Talent managers are acknowledging the fact that the days where they were kings are over. It is a candidate’s market today and the onus is on them to ensure that they are able to attract the best people for their organisation.
For that to happen, they will need to be aware of what is happening in the market and the evolving characteristics of the workforce. Much like in the United States, despite resurging economic outlooks, wage growth remains low here and this presents a serious challenge. And whilst there is not as much of an emphasis on negatively skewed work life balance it’s still something to keep in the back of the mind for Talent managers.
The increasing mobility for Australians is certainly another point to note. We certainly seem as fluid as the American market, as the most recent forecasts suggest Australians are expected to have as many as 17 jobs and 5 different careers by the time they retire, and spend slightly longer (at 3.3 years) in their jobs than half of Americans (2 years) do.
That is a lot of Aussies looking for jobs at any one time, and not just those trying to break ground in a new field. Many are making career moves and taking on new directions within their expertise with increasing frequency and rapidity, generating a lot of potential candidates for Talent managers.
How do you tap into all this Talent effectively?
Firstly, listen to your new audience. Don’t descend from on high like a job-finding angel. Today’s Talent is confident about what sort of roles and futures they’re looking for, and as a Recruiter, keeping your finger on that pulse is what keeps you relevant.
Secondly, Talent today are looking for learning opportunities to build their careers on, not a forever-home, and want to be able to do so in a flexible manner wherever they are. The rise of the gig economy is testament to the trend and there are plenty opportunities out there for you to capitalise on the wanderlust of this new breed of jobseekers.
Lastly, be prepared for Talent who don’t want to compromise. With the downswing in people who want to find a company for life, and an upswing in short-term, flexible work arrangements, people want jobs that mesh well with their lifestyle outside of work. People want to pick up on jobs halfway across the country, or even the world, and then they want to pursue their careers, or even start new ones, right back in their hometown. If you want the best, you will have to pay attention to their requests.
In an increasingly globalised world, people want to move laterally as often as they want to move up, and move internationally as much as move locally. New jobseekers have changed and they expect you to change too. Yes, maybe candidates have a little bit more of a say about the journey. Don’t let it get you down or devalue your importance. Without you, candidates would be adrift in the wind, flung about by the current, rapidly changing market.
Talent mangers are still relevant, vital even. But the process has always been a collaborative piece between yourself and your candidates. So if you ever feel like you’ve been pushed out of the driver’s seat, just remember that nothing’s changed about your abilities. You just have new passengers.
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