June 22, 2018

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What 'It' is and 'WHY It' is both Opportunity and Obstacle

The critical position for which you are recruiting has been open longer than anyone likes. The issues and challenges that the hired candidate will manage are an increasing burden on the already short staff. No one wants to say so but people are muttering that this person must not exist. You are starting to have a growing sense of futility in your best efforts. Those directly affected by this open position are turning up the heat.

You might say that this all makes no sense. After all, finding a person is what you do, right? So why then, is most of what worked for years simply failing now? The cause is inarguable. The impact of this talent shortage is long-term for some. It is an opportunity for others. We are all subject in our best efforts to the conditions under which we apply them.

You may wonder if you somehow missed this on CNN or around the office coffee pot. Fact is, It has been staring at us for 27 years and we have ignored It or let It go unnoticed. This is what It is: a serious shortage of professional talent. How could this be? It is a simple math problem; Baby-boomers are 76MM, Gen-X is 38MM (1/2 as big as the Boomers) and Millennial’s number; 74MM (nearly as big as Boomers). It leaves employers with the challenge of competing for talent. The U.S. Industrial economy has been based and built upon a population twice as large as It is. The U.S. Department of Labor reports an unemployment rate among professionals of only 3+%. That is about statistical zero.

Many employers continue to pursue critical talent with paradigms and practices forged in a much larger talent pool. Many job boards and their capacity to satisfy talent requirements are falling far short of expectations today. Web-centered recruiting is failing to rope in passive candidates. Gen-X reports a huge complaint as recruiters often besiege them to the extent that their work now suffers. The old technology tools will not be more effective if we just use them more than before. A surgeon using an old dull scalpel and cutting harder would be accused of malpractice. Are we using the wrong tools and practices?

I am confident that you know see that “It” is the vanishing, smaller talent pool, “It” is the real wellspring of talent, creativity and the people who will lead the economy to vibrant performance now and for years to come. They simply need to be placed in the best opportunities for everyone.

Proven practitioners of recruiting often move along with the new technique or tool. Why not? I recall how advantageous a fax machine was versus mailing or delivering anything in writing. That said, we sometimes leave great tools in our affair with the newest things. Many veteran recruiters are asking for something “new” that addresses the talent shortage, the pensive hiring decision-makers and the obstacles such as housing, schools and relocation. Taking out the “New” and replacing it with the “Old” has become the route to best recruiting practices. Many recruiters and employers need to “re-learn” what was once mastered. The education and expertise still exists and can be gained.

Check out and www.RecruiterElearning. for the answers.

Doug Beabout

Doug's recruiting career spans thirty-six years of expertise in recruiting, personnel services firm ownership, and training. His tenure in recruiting includes building four highly successful recruiting businesses and establishing hundreds for others worldwide. Although Doug works at a full-time search practice with two researchers, Doug also speaks to state, regional and private recruiter associations. He is a consultant to many corporations and personnel firms. Doug is currently owner and president of the Douglas Howard Group, a professional recruiting firm. Doug conducts several online training programs for recruiters and researchers. He is a world-class recruiting coach to rookies and top recruiters alike. Feel free to contact him directly at: 850.424.6933 or