What are the best hiring strategies for you during COVID-19?

The COVID-19 outbreak has forced many business owners to rethink the way they manage staff. With the furlough scheme due to come to an end in October, workers will either need to return to work or their employers will need to think about redundancy packages. 

For those trying to hire staff during this time, social distancing measures make it more difficult to interview and onboard members of staff. In some cases, workers are starting new roles remotely without ever meeting their employer in person. These are truly unprecedented times and many employers are facing the harsh reality that their employees are simultaneously expensive to retain yet too valuable to lose.

Any company facing a skills shortage at this time may be reconsidering their existing work practices. Companies that would previously rely on permanent employees may be feeling the squeeze and turning to fixed-term contracts to help. While those previously reliant on temporary workers might be struggling to fill these roles without offering some job security. In this article, we will look at the advantages of each type of contract and how these could help businesses weather the COVID-19 storm.

Advantages of permanent contracts

With widespread job losses on the horizon, the primary concern for most workers is job security. It’s unlikely that anyone will be handing in their notice during this time, so the best talent is likely to already be employed. 

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, companies could recruit from a vast pool of talent. Workers were more confident in their ability to find a new role and might give notice and take a career break before looking for a new opportunity. 

With the pandemic affecting every corner of the economy, workers are more likely to stay put unless they are offered a permanent contract. Hiring workers on permanent contracts might come with its risks, but if you want to hire the best of the best, this might be the only way forward.

Advantages of fixed-term contracts

Many companies are facing fundamental changes in the way they function and may discover that they don’t have the infrastructure to fully adapt to remote working culture. Specialist workers with enterprise cloud management experience and data security skills are in demand at this time. But the demand for these skills may well be short-lived once workers can return to the workplace.

Hiring a worker on a fixed-term contract gives you greater control over your staffing expenses. According to specialist technical recruitment agency Nolan Recruitment, many companies are turning to this type of contract to help them attract talent without taking on additional risk. It also helps when both parties know exactly where they stand with a work contract.

Many of those workers with highly niche skills are already accustomed to fixed-term contracts, so they won’t be put off by the offer. In many situations, they prefer this type of contract as it gives them greater control over their working patterns. 

Advantages of temporary contracts

Many workers are unemployed at this time and looking for any work to boost their income. If you have a large number of casual vacancies to fill, temporary contracts can help you to achieve this. Temporary contracts give the employer maximum flexibility, so if you’re worried about the future of your company, this can give some peace of mind.

Some industries are experiencing a boom due to the COVID-19 outbreak, particularly those offering home delivery. To help meet demand in the short-term, temporary contract workers offer an ideal solution. Furloughed workers and those out of work temporarily will be best suited to these roles.

Which is best during COVID-19?

The best hiring strategies during COVID-19 are the ones that allow companies to take control. Business owners need to be able to meet demand while remaining flexible. As furloughed workers return to the workplace we will start to see the long-term effects of the pandemic. Both employers and employees should be prepared for dramatic changes in the months ahead. 

Many industries are still heavily supported by government spending and grants, but this has to come to a close eventually. Which companies survive and which ones crumble will be determined by their ability to be flexible and adaptive to change. This could mean vast changes in the way workers are hired – and fired.