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State of Texas Staffing

texas staffing

Texas staffing isn’t what it used to be.  Last January, the American Staffing Association reported terrific news: Recruiters should expect a surplus of candidates in 2021, with an 80% surge of workers “seeking new jobs in the new year.” As we know now, those predictions didn’t play out as many employers had hoped. Temp staffing—and hiring in general—has become more challenging than ever. While Texas staffing has undoubtedly rebounded from 2020’s rock-bottom numbers, the fight to staff a contingent workforce faces new hurdles.

Staffing Industry Analysts says, “We continue to have cautious optimism about further growth of the staffing industry as the US economy expands, despite candidate shortages and the ongoing pandemic.”  That’s great, but employers on the ground have more questions than answers on finding workers. If you’re among them, here are some areas to work on:

It’s Time To Break Down Texas Staffing Barriers

Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) is on the minds of all employers in 2022. There are many ethical reasons to make it a priority, but when it comes to those who employ contingent workers, the bottom line is a valid reason, too.

“When you remove barriers, you can open your candidate pool significantly,” says Stephanie Grubbs, Regional Managing Director of The HT Group General Staffing Division. Those barriers, of course, can be related to race, ethnicity, religion, age, gender and other protected classes. But it’s essential to understand how restrictions can make your staffing jobs cost-prohibitive. “Requiring COVID-19 testing, for instance, can make working for you virtually impossible for a temporary worker if you don’t also think through who will pay for it, how the worker will access testing, and other considerations.”

These barriers extend to other traditional ways of treating temporary workers. For instance, in the past, it was a rare occurrence to trust temps to work from home. But, says Grubbs, “There are many admin, call center, and other temp jobs that can be done remotely. When possible, being open to remote solutions can expand the candidate pool significantly.”

The HT Group fills roles in Temporary Staffing, Executive Search, Technical Recruiting, and Retained Search.

Don’t Ignore Career Switchers

Have you tried to get a quick burger at 10 pm lately? It’s not easy. Restaurants are open fewer hours and have fewer employees on hand to expedite orders due to a chronic worker shortage. It was recently reported that Texas leads the nation in the number of open restaurant jobs. When digging into the phenomenon, Texas Monthly was told by former restaurant workers that “it’s the demanding, low-paid, and often benefit-free nature of the jobs. As economic growth accelerates in Texas, those workers face more attractive opportunities in other industries than they did before the pandemic.”

Healthcare workers are also, unfortunately, leaving their jobs in droves, primarily due to pandemic burnout. One study found that 66% of acute and critical care nurses have thought about quitting nursing entirely (an unrelated study shows 18% of healthcare workers have already left their healthcare careers in recent months).

“It’s an unfortunate situation for these industries, but it’s an opportunity for other employers that can offer better pay, benefits, safety, predictability, and work-life balance,” says Grubbs. With those factors in place, you can attract workers seeking a new career track, as long as you’re open to hiring people you may need to upskill.  More than a third of job-seekers have said they’d even be willing to sacrifice salary in exchange for skill-building opportunities right now. “The opening is there, but you need to work with a staffing partner to develop a training program that will give these career switchers a chance to thrive outside what they’ve always known,” she adds.

Find Texas Staffing Partners That Offer Enhanced Compensation

Willis Towers Watson recently reported that employers are raising starting salaries (43%), improving the employee experience (39%), making changes to health and wellbeing benefits (36%), and increasing workplace flexibility (33%) to attract and retain talent in 2022. That’s great, you may be thinking, but how can that apply to temporary workers?

Offering temp workers benefits is tricky unless you work with the right staffing partner. Reputable staffing companies with enough resources—like The HT Group—can put temporary workers on their payroll, which means benefits and even unemployment and other perks are possible. “We can shoulder that burden for you and take care of onboarding, training, and other administrative duties, too,” Grubbs says. “So, as long as you can offer attractive pay and a good work environment, together we can check all the boxes that valuable workers want to see.”

Temp-To-Hire Is Another Popular Consideration

Attitudes are shifting among job candidates regarding their willingness to work in temporary jobs. The American Staffing Association (ASA) recently found that 62% of job seekers still prefer permanent positions. The hunch is that these workers yearn for the job security they’ve felt they’ve lacked in the past couple of years. But they also found that 30% of workers are more interested in temporary placements than they were before. Among them are IT and other workers who value the flexibility and upskilling opportunities of temporary employment.

So, while a strong contingency workforce is out there, they may not be as strongly represented in the areas they’ve been before. Don’t assume you’ll be able to fill the roles you’ve filled before in the same way.  In some areas, there may be more opportunities for temporary staffing. But, for others, alternatives like temp-to-hire may be the best win-win.

“It’s an efficient use of time and money, it has flexibility and reduced risk built-in, but it can also be attractive to top talent because it can give them a defined path to permanent employment,” Grubbs points out.

And as Indeed states in its guide about temp-to-hire jobs, it’s (once again) crucial to find a reputable staffing agency. “Before choosing a staffing agency, spend some time conducting research, looking into reviews and asking for recommendations,” they write. “You’ll want to find an agency that has a highly qualified pool of candidates that are relevant to your needs and industry. Staffing agencies that insure their temp-to-hire employees and have a well-developed screening process will supply you with a higher class of candidates.”

Texas staffing is in good shape, but it’ll take some recalculating to get it right in 2022. Don’t be afraid to ask for some help to make it happen.

The HT Group fills roles in Temporary Staffing, Executive Search, Technical Recruiting, and Retained Search.