March marked the 2-year anniversary since COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic. As mandates have lifted and guidelines have loosened, the team at Kitchener Executive Consultants have been reflecting on the effects the pandemic has had on hiring over the last 2 years.
While reviewing the hiring trends amongst our Clients in particular, we were able to compare placements of our Candidates over the past 4 years – the 2 years prior to the pandemic and the 2 years we navigated through it. The data gathered over our large Client database allowed us to observe some interesting hiring trends that we wanted to share with you.
Scope / Level of Placements
Over the last 2 years businesses have had to respond quickly to changing regulations and lockdowns. As businesses adapted to best manage through the pandemic, we knew organizations were going to begin to look internally at their talent in house, specifically at the Management level. We expected that the added challenges of managing a business through 2020 & 2021 would lead organizations to begin to strategically replace mediocre leadership.
However, when comparing the data of our Clients over the past 4 years, the hiring trends revealed a slightly different outcome. It’s no secret there is a talent shortage across most industries. Similar to the constant need for labour help, we saw the same increase in the need for professional and key contributor employees at the staffing and specialist level. At the same time, although we continued to see Clients hire at the Senior Management level, we did see a slight decrease in recruitment requirements for both Supervisory and Senior Management positions in comparison to the 2 years prior. During 2020 & 2021, our data displays there were more hires completed at the Specialist Level while businesses reinforced their bench strength than at the Management Level compared to the 2 years prior.
Professions of Placements
After the onset of the pandemic, we also expected not only an economic downturn, but also a dramatic shift in where organizations would need to hire. However, reviewing each of the different disciplines our Clients had hired for from 2018 – 2021, we see there was little deviation from the two years prior to COVID to the two years throughout the pandemic. In fact, after a slight decrease in the number of hires in 2020, some fields either rebounded or continued to display a steady increase in the number of total hires in 2021, specifically in the fields of operations/production, engineering, accounting/finance.
Our core customer base is predominantly within the manufacturing industry, so our findings may not be a reflection of other industries such as Hospitality, Tourism, and Retail that were strongly impacted by shutdowns and restrictions. However, from the information we were able to collect, we see that the Manufacturing industry remained strong throughout the pandemic.
Whether businesses temporarily shifted their focus to produce PPE, contributed to filling in the gap in supply shortages, or remained busy as an essential service provider, Kitchener Executive Consultants are pleased to have been able to support the industry’s changing hiring needs by sourcing the talent needed to continue to strengthen our Clients’ teams throughout the pandemic. We will be keeping an eye on these trends through 2022 and are looking forward to sharing more insights with you.