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Hiring Crisis Ahead: 70% of talent leaders say the hiring environment is getting harder

By Universum, 2022-06-07

STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN, June 7th 2022 – Universum’s Employer Branding NOW 2022 study, conducted during the first quarter of this year, shows the hiring environment is deteriorating further – even for top employer brands. Among the World’s Most Attractive Employers, 81% say the hiring environment is getting harder and 58% say recruiting needs are growing. Perhaps most surprising of all, this same group says their budgets are shrinking. 

“In all the years running this study, we’ve never seen such a widespread negative outlook for hiring,” says Richard Mosley, Global Client Director for Universum. “These challenging conditions can, however, be an incubator for innovation – and Universum’s research underlines this. Expect top employers to double-down in areas like reskilling existing talent, scaling the use of freelance talent, and getting creative with employer branding.”  

Universum, the global leader in employer branding, surveyed over 1,650 human resources and talent management leaders from 75 countries from March to May 2022. The research looks at a wide range of issues in recruiting and retention, including employer branding, budgeting, technology and employee engagement. The survey also collects insights from the World’s Most Attractive Employers, a cohort of the top global employers as identified by job seekers around the globe.  

Among other noteworthy findings from the research:  

Due to the tight talent market, companies are developing talent from within. Across industries, companies are investing in reskilling existing talent and promoting people from within; among the WMAE, 37% say improving internal career mobility is a “major priority.” It’s a win-win for employers, who can access skills that are in high demand/low supply, while also building a reputation as a company that invests in talent.  

Companies are quickly diversifying talent sources: This means casting a wider net to attract and hire new talent, including hiring more freelancers, part-timers, and boomerang employees. (Universum’s study shows that 44% of enterprise employers use freelancers as part of their sourcing strategy, and another 24% of those plan to do so.)  

Many talent leaders admit they are still not data-driven when it comes to recruiting. Companies clearly indicate that data-driven recruiting is a priority, but only half “frequently or always” make employer brand marketing decisions that are data-driven. As hiring needs ramp up in 2022-23, making the argument for bigger budgets will rely on a data-driven approach.  

Employer branding is critical to standing out amidst talent disruption. Among the WMAE, 86% call it a top priority — a 15 point jump in just one year. And among non-WMAE large companies, 75% cite it as a priority in 2022.  

“Witnessing double-digit growth in those who call employer branding a top priority is completely unprecedented,” says Universum CEO Mats Röjdmark. “Top employers view employer branding not as an expense, but as a strategic asset – one that can attract and retain the type of people that drive growth and innovation. Seeing the World’s Most Attractive Employers pivot so sharply to prioritize employer branding in 2022 is an important signal for all employers.”  

To download a copy of the full Employer Branding NOW report, which includes additional research about topics such as EVPs by company size, talent supply chain strategies, and data-driven recruiting, visit: https://universumglobal.com/employerbrandingnow2022/

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