From the candidates' perspective, unemployment rates and news about more jobs are just numbers and stats. What candidates care about is ... will this translate to finding a job more quickly?
Even though we hear positive news about more jobs and easing unemployment rates, the reality is that company hiring is still slow.
There are a number of factors at play here, that affect how quickly companies hire and how this affects candidate perception of hiring speed. Here are a few of these factors:
- Risk avoidance: Many companies, especially small ones, remain concerned about the economy's weakness, how tentative the recovery seems, how skittish their customers seem and weakness of small business credit. Even when they need employees to grow, many drag on the hiring process to get a better feel of what the year's revenues look like.
- Increased competition: CareerBuilder estimates that 84% of employed workers will be searching for a new job in 2011, compared to about 35% last year. So while unemployment has gone down, competition for jobs has more than doubled.
- Recruiters still have trouble finding skilled candidates: Employers remain "picky" and many job openings are for combo-jobs, that are two or three jobs mashed into a single position. Hiring managers are holding out for candidates that have all of these varied skills required for combo-jobs, to reduce training time, ramp-up time, and increase chances of employee success.
- Shopping around: Employers are more willing to shop around, even after finding candidates with hard to find skills or skill combinations, hoping they'll find someone better or cheaper.
- It can never be fast enough: For many candidates in transition, whose jobs are at risk, or hate their current environment, hiring processes will never be fast enough. These people have bills to pay and families to feed, or are just sick of the mental stress of a bad work environment.
The Wall Street Journal posted an interesting article about company hiring speed last week in "Jobs Open, but Filling Them Slows Down" by Joe Light.
Readers, please share: What are you seeing out there in relation to hiring speed?
Recruiters and employers: What's your perspective? Do you see hiring processes speeding up, slowing down, or remaining the same? Why?
Phil Rosenberg is President of reCareered, the web’s central hub for job search advice. An active blogger about social media and career change, Phil's articles have been republished by several of the leading job, career and recruiting sites. Connect with Phil on Twitter @philreCareered.