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HCMWorks Insights

Staffing Industry to Emerge From Pandemic Stronger Than Before, Finds New Study

Posted by Julia Fournier on 2 Jun 2020

The staffing industry is set to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic stronger, with a new study from StaffingHub finding that 71 percent of staffing firms expect the industry to come back stronger than before. 

The research, The 2020 State of Staffing Industry Growth, surveyed more than 334 staffing professionals for its COVID-19 Pulse Survey between March 31 and April 8, 2020.

It found that while most verticals anticipate business revenue to decrease by 9.5 percent in 2020, staffing firms in travel, nursing, education, insurance and legal verticals expect to see growth during the remainder of the year.

Overall a staggering 71 percent of staffing firms expect to emerge from the pandemic stronger than before it started.

The study, which originally surveyed more than 200 owners, management and c-level staffing professionals before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, found a range of insights about the growth of the staffing industry in 2019. HCMWorks has summarized some of the most important findings here: 

Staffing industry growth was slightly better than expected in 2019

In 2019, staffing firms recorded growth between 1-10 percent. Most interestingly, however, was that staffing firms beat their 2018 expectations when it came to growth. 

In 2018, 20.7 percent of firms expected to grow by 21 or more - the 2019 data showed that over 27.6 percent of respondents grew by this rate. Meanwhile, nearly half (47 percent) of firms reported growth rates of 11 percent or more across 2019.

The areas of growth were particularly interesting, with many staffing firms indicating growth opportunities that are more relevant than ever in the wake of COVID-19. These included:

  • Adopting the gig economy
  • Expanding into new verticals
  • Automation without losing personal touch
  • PR, social media, marketing and word of mouth

The candidate experience is crucial to success

Candidate relationship management and the candidate experience is absolutely crucial to acquiring top talent in your industry, and staffing firms that focus on this will have far more success than those which don’t. 

The survey found that staffing firms which respond the fastest to leads reported the fastest growth rates, while more than half of no-growth firms (54 percent) take more than an hour to respond to a lead.

As we discuss in our blog, ‘How to Acquire the Right Remote Workers for Your Organization’, acquiring top talent is all about positioning your company as the ‘employer of choice’. Successful staffing firms know that the candidate experience must be seamless if they are to engage and attract the most skilled workers in their industry.

Early adopters of technology grow faster

The staffing industry is shaped and defined by technology trends more than it has ever been before. The tech choices that staffing firms make will either help them build better relationships, operate more efficiently and grow faster, or fall behind their competitors.

That’s why it’s no surprise that fast-growing firms are more than likely to identify as early adopters of technology. The survey found that fast-growth firms are 63 percent more likely to consider themselves early adopters.

Automation and candidate engagement software were among the most popular technologies, with 53 percent of fast-growth firms responding that they operate with these technologies.

Making the correct staffing decisions for your organization isn’t easy. A total talent acquisition strategy relies on optimizing technologies (such as a vendor management system), activating the potential of the contingent workforce, and managing remote workers both effectively and efficiently. 

That’s why HCMWorks is here to help. We can help you design a workforce management strategy that ensures you acquire the high-quality talent needed for a successful long-term businesses strategy.

Do you have any questions about the survey, or simply want to find out how HCMWorks can improve your workforce management strategy by ensuring you make the right staffing and technology decisions? Contact our team of experts today. We would love to answer any questions that you may have.

Tags: Workforce Management, Contingent Workforce

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