It’s pretty much an open secret now. Professionals who quickly adapted to working remotely during the pandemic may not be so keen to return to on-premises work. And now that employers are discovering that, far from being a threat, working remotely can actually boost productivity and broaden access to talent, they’re starting to eye downsizing or eliminating facilities as a way to improve the bottom line. In fact, according to a recent Upwork study, 22% of the American workforce will be remote by 2025—that’s a staggering 87% increase from pre-pandemic levels.
There are plenty of studies highlighting other benefits of this seismic shift in how we work. Naturally, at Opptly, our focus is on the ways direct sourcing plugs beautifully into the remote worker trend, efficiently satisfying the remote hiring needs of both talent seekers and job seekers.
Boots on the Ground vs. Bytes in the Cloud
Back in the old days, large staffing agencies provided hiring companies with significant advantage simply by virtue of having branches in most large cities. These branches were the boots on the ground, offering local knowledge; a brick and mortar location for in-person interviews; local job fairs; access to area candidates; and more.
Today, hiring companies that are no longer limited to on-premise workers can look well beyond candidates that have proximity to a geographic region or facility. Gone are the days of, “We can only attract talent within an hour commute of our office.” In many cases, workers can live just about anywhere which is a complete game-changer in finding talent.
More and more, we’re seeing there’s significantly less benefit to having a physically present staffing agency. What does matter, however, is having a well-established, highly functional, centralized digital hiring destination. Here’s where Opptly’s direct sourcing platform really shines.
It’s a Worker’s Market
In recent months, publications including the Wall Street Journal have reported that across many different occupations, it’s a worker’s market. As we emerge from the pandemic, there simply aren’t enough workers to adequately fill today’s hiring needs. This could be attributed to any number of reasons. Some baby boomers who were nearing retirement pre-COVID-19 are not coming back. Family needs may have changed. Or returning workers are taking their time to find their next best career move rather than simply taking the first job they’re offered. We don’t yet know how things will shake out, but signs say this dynamic isn’t likely to change any time soon.
For those workers who can afford to be more selective with which opportunities they pursue, they may have new criteria in mind as they evaluate job postings. Clearly, the priority for job seekers looking for remote work is to find companies that are offering remote opportunities. But from there, other points kick in. Pay rate, yes; advancement opportunities, sure…but also, brand.
We’ve said it in a previous blog that today’s modern workers want to feel good about the organizations they work for. If a prospective employer is a brand they already know and like/love, so much the better.
Direct Sourcing Wins on Many Levels
With Opptly’s private marketplace, employers can leverage their brand to reinforce key messages about who they are while also attracting workers that may align with their mission and values. The result is an on-brand experience that starts the new professional relationship on a positive note. At the same time, thoughtfully designed recruiting communications can help minimize negative feelings in rejected candidates.
In addition to private marketplaces, open marketplace direct sourcing has the advantage of quickly and effectively ramping up hiring, especially for remote opportunities where the pool of applicants is massive. Opptly’s artificial intelligence matching technology combined with human curation (also part of our private marketplace solutions) offer a framework or “opportunity wrangling” that aggregate job board providers simply can’t. Ask anyone who has applied for a job through an online job board, and at best, they’re likely to say the experience was less than satisfactory. More often, they’ll say they never even heard if their application was received.
Working to Live, Not Living to Work
The pandemic brought terrible loss and hardship to individuals and businesses. But from that loss seems to have come a re-awakening to what is important in life: life. Giving up long commutes, having the time to attend to personal needs while finding work that is satisfying and meaningful…these trends are worthy of becoming permanent.
As today’s workers’ values have shifted, it seems evidently clear that the way the industry approaches hiring should also evolve. The time to do that was yesterday. Opptly has been in direct sourcing since 2015, and we’re already helping today’s progressive hiring companies maintain a strong competitive advantage by providing them with robust, highly tuned access to today’s best – often remote – talent.