5 Huge Ways Companies Are Contributing To Their Own Talent Shortage


Posted April 24, 2022 by Mark Perna

It’s a war for talent out there—and companies need to change their hiring mindset if they want to win. Mark’s article, “5 Huge Ways Companies Are Contributing To Their Own Talent Shortage,” published at Forbes.com on April 19, 2022.

Even in the midst of the Great Resignation, as companies scramble to find workers, there are talented people who can’t seem to land a job. What gives?

The disconnect starts at the very outset of the screening and hiring process, and it’s one that companies must overcome if they want to succeed in a fast-changing market. The biggest problem, according to Nicole Sahin, CEO and founder of Globalization Partners, is that companies are holding on to “an antiquated mindset” about hiring—one that will require a serious commitment to change.

Here are five crucial mistakes many companies commit in the screening and hiring process—mistakes that could be making the talent shortage bigger than it has to be.


1. Requiring experience for entry-level jobs

Many young jobseekers get discouraged when every job they’re interested in requires years of experience that they haven’t yet had the chance to acquire. Social media abounds with memes making fun of employers who are trying to fill entry-level roles with workers who have three to five years of experience. Doesn’t having experience contradict the very definition of “entry level”?

A blanket demand that every role be filled by someone who has lots of prior experience signals simple laziness on the part of the company. It says: “We don’t want to invest in you or your growth; just put everything you’ve learned elsewhere at our disposal so we can give you the bare minimum of attention.” Not a good look.

What would happen if companies instead took a more proactive approach and said, ‘No experience, no problem: we’ll train you’ to the first-time jobseekers knocking on their door? “I think if more companies took that approach for certain roles, they would be surprised at how quickly young employees learn and become valuable members of their teams,” says Sahin. “The young, inexperienced jobseekers of today can quickly become the superstar talent of tomorrow.”

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Of course, to become a superstar employee, these young workers need the mentoring and upskilling programs that can help them get there. “This not only benefits the employees but ensures that a company’s talent pool continues to thrive and function at the highest level,” says Sahin.

“The only thing that can’t be taught is passion for the work one does.”

2. Requiring college degrees for jobs that don’t need it

I’m the first to promote the college pathway for young people whose career aspirations demand it. But I’m also the first to question if every job, in every industry, every time, really and truly needs the applicant to possess a college degree in order to perform well.

“Hiring managers associate certain skill levels with a college education,” concedes Sahin. “It is certainly understandable and an important factor in candidate evaluation. But there are many reasons people don’t obtain four-year degrees and rejecting a candidate purely on that basis is a mistake.”

Why might a talented individual choose not to complete a four-year degree? Maybe they just couldn’t afford it—or stomach the debt it would bring. Maybe it was never presented to them as an attainable option, or there were family or other obligations that took precedence over their higher education.

“All skills must be learned and there are many talented candidates who never make the first round of interviews solely based on educational attainment,” says Sahin. This is a mistake—and one that many companies would do well to rectify.

3. Automating initial candidate evaluations

Resume screening software has become the norm for large-scale hiring operations, but there may be a dark side to this time-saving technology. Sahin believes we become lost when we started automating initial candidate evaluations. “Screening the resume instead of the person behind it has resulted in a massive talent loss for many companies,” she says.

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If you’re not sure about this, try a little experiment. Pull a raw sample of applications and scan through them yourself, looking at the person behind the resume and noting any that seem promising. Then run those same applications through your automated screening tool and see what it spits out.

While some argue that automated screening can remove bias from the hiring process, it can also work the other way. Your screening is only as good as its programming; it cannot think, reason or imagine a person’s true potential. It can only analyze the words on the screen.

4. Not looking further afield

Sahin believes that many companies are still focusing their talent search within a 50-mile radius of the office. “This not only hinders employers from finding the talent their company needs, but denies opportunities to those who could truly be game-changers for some of these companies,” she says.

So why aren’t companies broadening their search to look farther afield? One reason may be the logistical and compliance challenges—difficulties that Sahin has made it her mission to overcome. “Globalization Partners is one technology platform that enables companies to hire talent in over 187 countries quickly and compliantly,” says Sahin. “Therefore geography is taken out of the equation and is no longer a limiting factor.”

What happens when companies embrace a broader talent pool? “Geography is no longer a barrier; people no longer have to live in certain zip codes or major population centers for opportunities,” says Sahin. “By creating these inclusive global teams, we are fostering cultural understanding, acceptance and economic opportunity for everyone.”

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5. Inflexibly requiring in-person work

As we return to a (slightly) less pandemified reality, many employers are requiring their employees to return to the office at least part of the time. But does it make sense to insist on this for jobs that could be performed remotely? “The remote office is here to stay and has become a priority for many employees,” says Sahin. “Things have changed and now employees want flexibility, and for top talent, that has become an absolute priority.”

Companies that are calling their teams back to face-to-face work do so for varying reasons, but many cite company culture and employee connectedness as their driving factors. “All of that be maintained and grown in a remote first environment,” Sahin says. “When employers take out the on-site and geographic requirements for talent, the world is open for hiring.”

A whole new world

Employers who are hoping the world will soon return to pre-pandemic conditions are in for a disappointment. In screening and hiring, as in every other area of the workplace, it’s a whole new world out there.

One thing is clear: The hiring strategies that used to be effective don’t work anymore, and organizations that continue to use them will end by hindering their own efforts. Will companies heed the signs of the times and rethink who, how and where they hire? Those who don’t will sacrifice a strategic advantage in the war for talent.

Read at Forbes.com

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About The Author
Mark Perna
Mark C. Perna is an international speaker and bestselling author. He also serves as CEO of TFS Results, a strategic consulting firm at the forefront of the national paradigm shift in education and workforce development.
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