How To Navigate The 2021 Talent Shortage

We all know that skilled employees make a business function. Without these talented individuals, businesses can never turn strategies and ideas into reality.

 A business needs a pool of talented employees who can provide a good quality of work. If a company has a hard time recruiting candidates with the right level of skills and experience, then that needs immediate attention.

Unfortunately, studies have shown that talent shortage is indeed a common problem today. And, this issue does not exempt huge corporations. In fact, larger companies have more difficulty filling roles than micro-companies, probably because larger companies have higher standards than the smaller ones.

There are many factors that contribute to this emerging issue of talent shortage, but the number one reason is the fast innovation of technology. Not everyone can keep up with how fast technology is innovating. Sadly, most people don’t spend time investing and making time to learn and upskill. Neither do some companies invest in their employees to train them with new skills.

 For companies to survive the talent shortage that every business is currently facing, either company retain high-performing employees and invest in different training for them to keep up with the business needs or reevaluate the current hiring process that the company has.

 How will your businesses cope up with the talent shortage? 

Reevaluate your current recruitment process

If skills shortage is becoming a serious issue for your business, you probably need to sit down and rethink your current process of finding and recruiting new staff members. That means you may need to shift from hiring someone who has all the skills needed to be a successful candidate for the role to hiring someone who has the potential to perform.

Take advantage of the contingent workforce

These days, a massive number of people choose to work as freelancers, contractors, and consultants. Businesses should make use of these resources to fill in the gaps in your day to day operations.

This pool of talents is highly equipped and can offer flexibility, availability and can provide specialized work that is set to be delivered in a certain period of time.

Make use of the potential of your existing employees

One of probably the brightest ideas to deal with the skills shortage is maximizing your resources if you can’t find and recruit a candidate who has the right skills. Why not start investing in upskilling your top employees. Allow them to improve their existing skills to fit in the business needs. Aside from being cost-effective, this is also efficient since you do not need to find, recruit, and onboard a new employee.

It could also be an effective way to retain star employees. After all, your employees are a good investment for the company’s future, plus they already have the knowledge on how the business works. After all, knowledge transfer isn’t always as effective as working with someone who has the ability already.  If top employees are getting advanced skill education and feeling they have a path for advancement they will likely stay longer within your company. 

Affiliate with educational or training facilities

This could mean creating an apprenticeship, internship, or hiring fresh graduates from your affiliates. When you consider this option, there will be in-depth training that needs to be conducted since they have little prior experience. But, partnering with an educational facility from either local or international sources would be a great way to start developing the next generation of skilled employees.

 Outsource services

One thing that a business can also consider is making use of third-party service providers. There are headhunters, executive search firms, and managed services providers (MSP) who can help you with the increasing threat of scarcity of skilled employees.

These third-party service providers can help a company gain access to a pool of highly qualified candidates. They can also provide contractors or consultants who can work for you on a particular project or in a specific period of time.

Headhunters have established databases and connections that can give you an edge to screen a pool of candidates with the skills needed for your business. Some MSPs specialize in providing consultants or contractors, which can help fill in urgent business needs when you are not able to see the perfect candidate yet.

Make use of technology

Millennials and Gen Zs are guilty of spending much of their time with their mobile phones. There are a lot of ways you can reach the right people you need through social media. Make use of social media algorithms in your quest to hire top talent. You probably need an expert on this one. Ensure you are targeting the right audience. You might have to allot a budget for this, but certainly, it will help your cause. 

Be Flexible

Because of the increasing demand for skilled workers, the competition with different companies has become tighter. Employees now have a lot of options on where they will be employed, especially those who are in a very niche position. They have the power to demand salary, location, the flexibility of schedule, etc.

Having said that, businesses should rethink their edge over other companies. Perhaps, they can be flexible in terms of location or schedule. Do you really have to hire someone who needs to be in the office five days a week? Or you can entice potential employees by letting them work from home? Simple things like that may mean a lot to your target candidate.

A business can also consider looking in different places. Because if you are having a hard time looking in your current pool, you might be looking at the wrong place. Expand your search. Do not stick with only one strategy. There are tons of sources of applicants, so maximize all of them. 


The talent shortage is definitely a major setback to achieve a company’s goal. But there are tons of ways to overcome it. A company has to be creative with its strategies and ideas in order to keep up with the tight competition that’s going on in the talent market.

Ideas are limitless. Always consider the most efficient, effective, and of course cost-effective as well.  When a business doesn’t use an optimized talent acquisition strategy, you’ll end up hiring the wrong candidate, or you will lose the chance to hire the best candidate for the role you are filling. The lack of a modern talent acquisition strategy may eventually lead to low productivity and quality issues, and in the long run, it might result in lost revenue.

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