February 7, 2023

Now’s The Time To Hire (If You Can)

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The market is soft. If you’re hiring, that’s a good thing. (For you, anyway.)

You don’t have to compete against Google and Amazon and their $500k+ total comp offers right now. It’s the best time to hire in the last decade.

But not everyone is. And this isn’t going to last. Hirewell’s January job orders were up 52% since November. 118% since December.

Not convinced? Jeff Smith and James Hornick will discuss why you’ll regret dragging your feet on hiring in Episode 59 of The 10 Minute Talent Rant, Now’s The Time To Hire (If You Can)

Episode Transcript

The 10 Minute Talent Rant is live. I’m James Hornick joined by Jeff Smith, and we are on the clock. The 10 Minute Talent Rant is our ongoing series where we break down things that are broken in the talent acquisition and hiring space. Maybe even pitch a solution or two. Before we dig in, all of our contact could be found on talentinsights.hirewell.com.

This week’s topic, episode 59 “Now’s the time to hire if you can.” Ready for this one? I am. It’s not so much of a, we’re not fixing a solution. This is more of just the advice segment of the rant. Yeah. It’s just like, now’s your time. So, all right. We’ll get into it. Yeah. Some context, some background here.

Last week I shared a story on LinkedIn and I like gave myself some immediate self cringe because I’m reading this and I’m like, this is going to sound like one of these bullshit LinkedIn stories, you know what I mean? They’re totally made up, but it’s not. I guess it’s not that unbelievable. But six months back had a client of ours, a CEO of a company hires a lot of tech people, he had to kind of put things on pause for a bit and finally said like in talking with him, “Yeah, I’m going to start hiring tech again.”

My eyes kinda light up, because great, more business for us. But then he’s like, “Eh, but in like six months because all these big tech companies, they’re going to start laying off at some point.” And I was just, I’m like immediately thought, because this was back in July, August. Now I’m like, he’s out of his mind.

This guy’s crazy. Turns out I was the one who was outta my mind. Absolutely. He’s dead on right. Absolutely not. I just never thought I’d see it happen, but whatever. Yeah. I mean, they laid off a ton, that’s for sure. But more importantly, in this time and place, they’re not hiring at present. Mm-hmm. So that in conjunction with unemployment being historically low, 50 year low of 3.4%.

I mean, you can get into the fi- there’s 519,000 added jobs in January. We could all bicker about if that’s real or not. But I think the overarching sentiment here is there’s a window, but it probably is going to close pretty quickly. If you’ve got the cash and you have the means to hire, but you’re not-

we truthfully feel like you’re going to miss out on maybe the best three to six month hiring span in like the last 10 years of our careers. I can’t think of something that’s comparable. I could be wrong, but that’s just our hy hypothesis. It’s definitely a self-serving rant, full disclosure. But this isn’t being, this isn’t just from us.

We’re watching some of our better customers kind of do this real time with some pretty exceptional results. They’re loving life right now. Yeah. Back to what we were saying about big tech and I have to make this clear, it’s not the fact that they did layoffs that makes this good time to hire.

It’s like Jeff said, it’s a fact they’re not hiring themselves. The reason why is because they drove salaries through the roof. 2021, early 2022, like big tech was over hiring with total comp packages that no one else could sniff. Equity with equity included, you’re looking at 400 to 600K for a single software dev.

Seeing it in a real time was absurd. We specifically had clients at that time that had to scale back the amount of hiring they could even do just because they couldn’t, they literally couldn’t afford to build the dev team they wanted to based on numbers from just a couple years prior, so. Yeah.

Side point, this isn’t just tech, tech jobs. Mm-hmm. Like across the board, I would say the big tech companies inflated enterprise payrolls, anyway. So you get that few firms, you know, we work primarily but not exclusively series B through D, E, you know, second to fourth, fifth round of funding. You know, they couldn’t compete with it.

These great up and coming challengers, even well established organizations that just don’t have the all in equity packages. They couldn’t compete with millions of dollars of RSUs. Silver lining, now that’s not an issue. So James, what does hiring look like right now at this present moment?

The short story is take away everything that was a total pain in the ass for the past several years and it’s gone. The long version, let’s go through it. First off, more yeses. You just get- people are getting more acceptances nowadays. There’s less companies hiring, so there was more multi offer- less, I’m sorry. Less multi offer situations.

Mm-hmm. Less rejections, people you’re getting a higher overall acceptance ratio, that’s skyrocketing. If you’re actually looking at how efficient your marketing your hiring has to be. Not every position has to be an absolute time suck like it was, trying to make headway on it for the past two years, maybe 10 years.

It’s just easier to get stuff done. Yeah. Think about all that time that you invest in courting that top choice, which is number two, and just letting it all go out the window. So I’ll be frank, there’s a lot of people that can do most jobs. Hiring managers- I’ve been a hiring, I’ve been a needlessly picky hiring manager.

But hiring managers can be needlessly picky. It’s understandable. You get it wrong once, and you’re not likely to forget it, and you’re definitely not, you’re going to try not to make that mistake again. Everyone likes getting their top choice. I like getting my preferred colorway of Jordan’s.

Sometimes I can’t get it. That’s just the way it is. There’s value in less competition. I think it’s going to result in higher acceptance ratios. You’re going to spend less time overall with your personnel, having to invest time in interviewing, et cetera. And you’re going to get your number one choice more often and probably save a little bit of cash.

Just the overall experience is just far less stressful for everyone involved. I think you can also put yourself in a position to beat those who are actually competing with you now by moving a little bit faster and getting the great people that you have access to. You know, think about like if you’re a marketing agency in a specific location, you actually for the first time in 18 months, have a realistic expectation to hitting kind of that top 10% of the market.

Yeah. Next one. Getting into more time just to convey your value. More time to vet people. It’s like the downside of a hot market is that it’s fast. And that might sound like silly to say, but moving too fast has just as many problems as moving too slow does. And I think we also saw that, like how many people, all those reports came out like 2021 of like boomerang hires- people who left their company and then went back to another one, or people that had short stints.

And there was a lot of different reasons for it, but maybe that was you even. Like maybe job seekers were excited to get back to work, they got a substantial compensation bump. Companies moved at lightning speed just to keep up with each other. Then to find out, uh, this company wasn’t for me, you know? And it kind of works both ways.

There’s a value in- or worse, they didn’t have the cash that they threw at. There’s value in companies having a little bit of time to clearly articulate their value, make sure it really is truly a match. Job seekers don’t want to end up in the wrong place anymore than companies want to make a bad hire.

And when you have to move too quickly, regardless of which side you’re going to say is kind of at fault of making a bad decision on a hire, making a bad decision to go to a company. When everyone has a little more time to think it through, there’s a lot less of that. Not advocating, like you should move slow.

It’s just that you don’t have to cut corners like you did. And let’s honest people, you had to cut corners if you want to get hires done the past couple years. So just like more value proposition, deeper vetting, candidates having more time. It doesn’t have to feel like a shotgun approach like it used to.

Yep. I’m shoring. Who is it? Is it Hansel? Hansel is so high. Yeah Hansel. It’s so high now. We’ve got a couple of clients who did more offshoring than they actually wanted to over the last couple years, but it worked. And honestly, the more I’ve talked with a couple of these places specifically, they have eyes on continuing that model, at least near term to ensure that things are taken care of.

But that doesn’t mean that they don’t have some needs domestically, here in the United States. So the salary inflation was so insane that they literally couldn’t afford to build the team that they wanted based on the numbers from the year before and the projections that their boards and their investors are looking for.

It’s just, it comes down to simple math. It’s just not feasible. We highlight McMaster Carr a lot in the rant. Look, they’re one of these companies that’s capitalizing on the market. They are a hybrid first Chicago based company, and we just got back from their offices yesterday talking about how to drive as many tech hires as they possibly can while fang sorts their shit out.

I’m not anti the idea of offshoring by any means, but if there’s aspects of your business that you want to keep local, now’s the time to do it. All right, one more for you. And it’s, I may fly in the face what I said a few minutes ago, but there is some, like getting the layoff pulled before they’re gobbled up, you know?

Mm-hmm. Like I don’t want to look at this as being advantageous because people lost their jobs. But the factor is, those people are not going to be unemployed long. I’m firmly on that. If you’re’ from Amazon or Google or one of these places, but that also means like you don’t have much time to act on it.

When we started out the rant, I mentioned the CEO I talked to who wanted to wait until big Tech did layoffs, he’s hiring right now. That’s what company- companies that had that mindset, you know what I mean? Like now is the exact time. For the longest we can remember, it’s been a job seekers market. Well now it’s an employer’s market.

Maybe just for this month, I don’t know. But when things are in your favor, you either have to like take advantage of it and actually move and make a decision, or you’re once and again going to be wondering like, why didn’t we do this before? Yeah. You can’t just wait and see what the herd’s going to do.

Your CEO has got the right idea for sure. So takeaways, what do we got? Yeah. Interestingly, some people do want to go back to hybrid. There are plenty of people that are open to a conversation right now. It doesn’t mean that they’re going to just move frivolously, like there has to be a value prop to it.

But ever since the start of the pandemic and you know the surge of remote work, this is the most I’ve had conversations where people are like, “Yeah, I kind of want to see human beings again.” So speaking directly to you companies out there that are seeking hybrid workers, there could not be a better time. Yeah.

Long story short, if you have the means to hire right now, do it. Don’t wait. If you need help, give us a call. There’s your plug. We are short on clock. That’s a wrap for this week. Thanks for tuning in The 10 Minute Talent Rant part of the Talent Insight series which is always available for replay on talentinsights.hirewell.com, as well as YouTube, Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Spotify and Amazon.

Jeff, thanks again as always/ everyone out there, see you soon!

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