US Staffing Industry Trends to Watch in 2022 and Beyond

With the global staffing market expected to grow by 16% on year in 2021, and the US already ranking first in revenue generation, year on year growth and revenue in the US staffing industry are only expected to increase further in 2022. Here are some trends to keep an eye on in 2022.

1. Candidates continue to hold the power

The extreme talent shortages that the United States, and the rest of the world, have been well documented throughout 2021. The US job market has been recovering from layoffs in 2021, resulting in record-high quit rates among employees who are no longer willing to settle for mediocre perks. This has thrown hiring managers into the deep end when it comes to attracting and retaining quality employees, and they are frequently seeking assistance from the experts in sourcing talent, recruiters.

Candidates can now choose from a large number of open positions across the United States, giving them the ability to select which employers best meet their needs. Trends that are attracting candidates and are expected to continue in 2022 include:

Salary Increases in 2022

According to Jobvites’ Recruiter Nation Report, 73 percent of recruiters reported candidates negotiating for higher salaries in 2021, a 20 percent increase from 2020. Starting salaries for professional occupations are expected to rise by 3.8 percent on average in 2022, according to Robert Half’s 2022 Salary Guide. High-demand roles may see even greater gains.

If you are a recruiter who has not yet entered the US staffing industry, rising salaries make the market an even more appealing place to grow. The higher the salary of your candidate, the greater the potential margin (mark-up) for recruiters when placing candidates. Particularly in contract staffing, where clients are likely to extend contracts due to inability to find permanent staff, resulting in a consistent stream of income for recruiters.

Perks and benefits

Candidates are less likely to accept low-quality benefits from an employer in 2022 because, with so much competition, they can simply look elsewhere if your plan is insufficient. Another finding of Jobvites’ Recruiter Nation Report was that comprehensive medical/dental coverage (51%) and 401(k) (41%) plans were effective at attracting new candidates.

Remote work will remain popular in 2022.

Work-life balance is now a deciding factor for candidates in the US labour market. Candidates prefer flexibility, and many do not return to work full-time. Offering work-from-home flexibility is a trend that is expected to continue into 2022. In 2022, the trend of remote work in the United States may benefit recruiters. With 18% of hiring managers willing to look anywhere for talent if they cannot find qualified candidates locally, why not broaden your search to other states to find more qualified candidates who can work remotely?

Using an employer of record solution, such as PGC, allows you to engage candidates in any state for your client while providing best-in-class benefit plans. If your clients have yet to embrace this trend, sell them on the advantages of remote work and the power of recruiting anywhere in the United States.

2. In 2022, concentrate on a specific skill segment within the US staffing industry.

In the US staffing industry, niche recruitment is expected to be a priority in 2022. The days of multitasking and talking to clients and workers from various skill sets throughout the day are long gone. The talent shortage has shown hiring managers that specific skill sets are required for their roles, and with the urgency of filling positions, many only want to speak with experts in their field.

Furthermore, in an increasingly digital world filled with distractions, candidates are more likely to make time to speak with recruiters who understand their specific industry pain points, career goals, and how they can help them achieve their goals. With temporary staffing skill segments such as IT, accounting, life sciences, and marketing all expected to see an increase in demand in 2022, make sure you choose your industry specific focus and have a solid candidate base built up as well as knowledge of the roles to make your mark in 2022.

3. Recruitment Process Automation

The talent shortage and resignation crisis in the United States will necessitate a change in recruitment strategy for forward-thinking staffing firms. Because of the pandemic, digital on-demand services are now expected in nearly every aspect of life, including recruiting. In 2022, the staffing industry will likely rely on more technology products to accelerate and automate recruiting metrics such as time-to-hire, quality-of-hire, and cost-of-hire.

Technology tools that aid in the sourcing, screening, scheduling, and communication during the hiring process are expected to become more common in 2022. Recruiters can free up time from low-value business-as-usual work and instead focus on high-value, personalised outreach to candidates once applications are received by automating tasks. Investing in automated email triggers after a candidate applies for a job, for example, or a website chatbot for frequently asked questions by candidates can all improve the quantity and quality of communication.

It is important to note that staffing is unlikely to fully rely on automation, particularly for roles that are difficult to fill and require a high level of human contact. However, if you want to transform your processes in 2022 and beyond, automation is a worthwhile consideration.

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