Key factors to building workforce agility
The business world has been in an almost constant state of flux since the Covid-19 pandemic. No sooner had the decimating effects of the pandemic abated, Russia invaded Ukraine, which affected energy prices, food prices and drove inflation across the Western world to highs not seen in decades.
To combat inflation, central banks increased interest rates which caused an increase in the cost of borrowing, affecting homeowners and businesses alike.
However, while some businesses were forced to lay off staff by their thousands, filed for bankruptcy and disappeared, other organisations flourished. So, what is the differentiating factor that has allowed some businesses to thrive when times are tough while others fall by the wayside?
For organisations to benefit from the opportunities created by the current disruption, innovation and transformation happening in the marketplace, agility is essential. Therein lies a problem.
19% of organisations regard their lack of agility to be their most significant concern for the future, and 46% of HR professionals expect at least 20% of their workforce to be contractors or temporary staff in the near future.
In a survey by Deloitte, 67% of the respondents agree that improving business agility is a high priority across the organisation. However, almost 50% think they need a clear articulation of why, and only 24% of the respondents say the outcomes are measured and made transparent.
Research from the Business Agility Institute estimated 71% of businesses have low business agility, and 55% of companies that have yet to implement a plan for business agility and technology believe they are less than a year away from losing market share.
What is agility in the workplace?
Agility in the workplace is the ability to use speed and data-driven innovation to maintain a competitive advantage. Additionally, it can also provide increased productivity, higher employee engagement and a better ability to respond to market changes and economic conditions.
Business agility is vital if organisations want to effectively compete in environments that are constantly changing as a result of technological advances, think artificial intelligence, and globalisation.
If a business can respond rapidly to meet its customer demands, they are more likely to retain customers and be able to compete and thrive.
Why is workforce agility important?
Agile organisations are innovative
They think outside the box and established ways of doing things, and understand that by being agile, they will almost certainly increase their organisational innovation.
Improved skills and abilities
By improving employee skills through continuous learning and development and cross-training employees, you will increase employee productivity and efficiency.
Enhance processes and workflows
Agile workforces use agile models that allow them to practice data-driven decision-making and incremental project implementation, which is constantly evaluated and adjusted as required.
Tools and technology
Agile workforces use tools and technology to work remotely, improve productivity and analyse data to drive their decision-making.
How to improve workforce agility
The organisations that are growing, thriving and outstripping their competitors have found ways to increase revenue, profitability and productivity. They have adopted these five lessons to help them continue growing whatever the economic conditions.
Understand the mix of talent in your organisation
32% of organisations report they have a poor understanding of the talent in their own organisation and what their future talent needs may be. Using improved processes and reporting tools, businesses can gain a clearer understanding of the talent they possess, which is a vital first step in improving workforce agility.
Prioritise diversity, equity and inclusion
Research shows that having a broad mix of top talent who bring different viewpoints is essential for innovation and problem-solving. Embracing diversity, equity and inclusion gives you a talent pool that collaborates effectively and can drive rapid change.
Develop the use of contract workers
Organisations recognise the value of contractors, not just as a short-term stop-gap but as a resource to provide rapid access to skills that will allow the business to pivot as market conditions change.
Use data to manage workforce agility
Successful organisations use the tools and technology to unlock the power of data to help manage workforce agility. Data analytics tools like predictive analytics can help forecast future requirements and provide a game-changing advantage to businesses adopting this technology.
Outsourcing talent acquisition
Outsourcing specialist recruitment of contractors and permanent talent allows organisations to react more quickly to market changes and save businesses the cost of building their own talent acquisition teams.
Why outsource your talent acquisition to build workforce agility?
According to Randstad Enterprise Global Business Insights research, nearly a third of all employees laid off during 2022-2023 were from HR and Talent sourcing areas.
Though this approach may make sense in the short term, it could negatively impact a business’s agility and ability to respond to changing conditions.
Re-hiring, training, and onboarding takes time when you need talent acquisition professionals to support shifting business priorities, leaving your organisation falling behind your competitors.
As the economy remains in a state of flux and continues to throw curveballs at businesses, the need to adjust and adapt at a moment’s notice is crucial. To avoid a continuous cycle of hiring and laying off in-house talent acquisition teams, businesses are waking up to the fact that if they want an agile workforce, they’ll need to outsource all or part of their talent acquisition function.
Outsourcing Talent Acquisition or Recruitment on Demand allows your organisation to change and adapt as required to increase your competitiveness and profitability by –
- Delivering a positive talent acquisition experience
- Allow in-house talent leaders the space to focus on strategic initiatives
- Have access to the data, market intelligence and available talent for your business
- Drive internal mobility programs and improve employee engagement and loyalty
- Reduce risk, manage costs and improve efficiency
At eSift, we’ll build a solution with you that is based on your needs and will help you to overcome your hiring challenges and achieve your ambitions.
We achieve this by ensuring a seamless integration with your existing recruitment function, focusing on your business goals and promoting your brand, and ensuring your existing recruitment function continues to run smoothly and effectively.
Outsourcing talent acquisition provides a high ROI with a fixed monthly cost to fill multiple roles; it will often be less expensive than a single placement fee from a traditional agency.
In the current market, workforce agility is no longer a ‘nice to have’ but a business necessity if you want to remain competitive and profitable.
One of the critical areas you’ll need to address to improve your agility is outsourcing your recruitment and talent acquisition.
If you’d like more information on how we can help make outsourced recruitment a seamless high ROI option, call us on 01252 624 699.