Navigating the 2016 Talent Market

Sarah Pisani, Nelson & Associates

In today’s talent market, finding and retaining qualified employees can be challenging. In a 2015 survey, nearly 30% of U.S. companies reported experiencing a candidate shortage.

This shortage is expected to continue through 2016; a recent survey revealed that 61% of hiring managers and recruiters anticipate hiring more in the first half of 2016 than in the last six months of 2015. In response, employers plan to boost wages by an average of 3.3% this year to remain competitive.

The top five trends that could impact your hiring efforts for 2016 include:

1. Unemployment decline

National unemployment is projected to continue to decline to 4.6% by the end of 2016, driving wage growth.

2. Labor force participation decrease

Despite the uptick in the economy, the rate of labor force participation is also projected to continue its decades-long decline.

3. Generational workforce changes

Millennials now make up the largest percentage of the workforce. They change employers more frequently than older generations, forcing companies to increase focus on talent retention.

4. New workplace models and tools

On-demand work platforms, such as Uber and TaskRabbit, and software for demand-responsive shift scheduling are transforming the traditional employment model in many industries, making it harder for employers to keep up with salary expectations.

5. Rapid growth

Certain industries are experiencing growth that far outpaces the U.S. average. For example a low 2.8% unemployment rate in the tech sector means many tech workers will remain in high demand.

Competing for qualified employees will prove challenging this year for many companies. After more than 45 years of working with our partners to overcome recruiting and staffing hurdles, the team at Nelson understands these challenges and how to help you successfully navigate them. That’s why we publish the annual Nelson Advisor with innovative solutions for workforce planning.

When it comes to competing for talent, stay ahead of the curve with Nelson’s 2016 Advisor, which includes:

  • Actionable tips on attracting and retaining talent from every generation
  • A plan for appealing to in-demand talent regardless of your company’s size
  • Current local salary projections for more than 200 positions, including legal positions with data specific to companies of various sizes

About the author:

Article provided by the Legal Staffing and Recruiting Experts at Nelson & Associates. To request your copy of this resource developed specifically for California employers, visit