The Great Resignation of 2021 is happening, and companies are paying attention: 1 in 4 tech employees are likely to quit between August and December of 2021. While tech and knowledge workers are accustomed to the ebbs and flows of the job market, they’re also in an environment deeply changed by COVID-19. And perhaps feelings about work have changed, too: demand and workloads in tech are ever high, and so is burnout. Many employers see the Great Resignation as a threat to recruiting and retention, fearing that more movement will hurt morale and productivity.
But what if the Great Resignation were an opportunity? What if employers could embrace a more dynamic working model, access a vibrant pool of diverse candidates, and reinvigorate their hiring culture to be more agile?
We believe you can. Here’s a few steps your organization can take to take advantage of the moment, and pivot to a better way of working.
1. Embrace remote work as more than a stopgap.
In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, many felt that remote work would be a stopgap solution. Yet 1+ years in, combined with the continuing uncertainty of COVID-19, remote is here to stay.
Companies must embrace remote work to hire competitively and keep employees safe. Yet, remote work can also democratize access to employment and widen the talent pool that your organization can access. Now, people with the right skills can apply to your roles from anywhere, granting you a much wider pool of talented candidates that already know how to be effective in this environment. For workers, remote work also offers flexibility, a highly coveted benefit, and the freedom of upward mobility and career growth in new places.
At Curate Partners, we’ve long prioritized democratized access to technology roles and have already optimized for building an experienced remote workforce. Our consultants know how to collaborate in a remote-first environment and will deliver the results you need, no matter where they are.
2. Move fast to hire right—especially now.
Today hiring is moving faster than ever—and organizations willing to bet fast on the right candidate can reap the rewards if they move quickly. After all, the average candidate is on the market for a total of 9 days—if you take longer to hire, you’re likely to lose out on the best candidates. Further, today’s candidates often have 2-3 offers before accepting one. The top employees and consultants will have many choices— but in the era of the Great Resignation, they’re on the market; two years ago, they might not have been looking.
Hiring the right person fast is a core part of our own hiring philosophy at Curate Partners. We’re experts in helping you identify your need and fill it fast, at the right level. Early on, we saw that digital transformation and technology innovation was going to disrupt the workplace—and we adapted fast to build a hiring model accordingly. Your Purple Squirrel is out there, and we have a plan for how to get them to work for you, so you don’t miss your moment to hire opportunistically.
3. Optimize for happiness and inclusion.
The Great Resignation isn’t just about switching jobs: it’s also about re-evaluating what’s important at work. Employees want to be supported and developed; they want to be heard, for their opinions to matter. And they want to be free to be their authentic selves at work, especially now that work is more deeply a part of people’s home lives.
Younger and ethnically diverse workers are also likelier than other groups to seek greener pastures. This is a chance for organizations to pause and re-evaluate their culture—is it working for long-term employees? How about new ones? Is it inclusive, welcoming, authentic for all groups? Are you open to improving how feedback is given and received? How have you adjusted your culture recently?
Well before the Great Resignation, we’ve always believed that happy employees drive better business— and that diversity, inclusivity and cultivating a positive, feedback-driven culture is critical for employee retention and development. We strongly believe in our duty to create and foster a culture of inclusion and growth with our consultants, partner organizations, and full-time employees—because culture creates strong, long-term relationships that will weather any market conditions.
4. Try a different way to hire and retain.
You have many hiring options in the age of the Great Resignation. Even if you’re filling a full-time role, you’re not limited to a full-time hiring model. Contract and contract-to-hire working arrangements are booming, as employees seek to expand their skills and explore new professional environments.
If you already embrace flexible hiring by hiring consultants, consider extending their contracts if more work is coming. Remember that replacing someone who already understands your business will likely cost you more per hour—and may be less productive due to initial learning curves. Your consultants are part of your business today; considering the current environment, you also have an opportunity to evaluate whether they’re well compensated and happy working for you.
Our consultant and contract-to-hire working model can help you bridge the gap between contract and full-time so that you focus on the problems your organization needs to solve, while we take care of the sourcing and hiring. We’ll give you access to the people with the skill sets that you need, while also screening for the right match that thrive in your organization’s unique culture.
Embrace change to gain opportunities
Today’s employees have more leverage to choose situations that work better for them, and they’re looking for companies that fit better into their lives. For companies, it’s an opportunity to examine the way they hire, how they develop their teams, and how they approach both their hiring and retention strategies.
At Curate Partners, we understand both sides. With our help, the Purple Squirrels—those qualified, skilled, hungry professionals—will be able to find you and, perhaps, the big role of their career. And for you? The Great Resignation is your chance to transform your people strategy—and we’ll help you along the way.