Wage Inflation. What Can Houston-Area Employers Expect in 2022?

Currently, job growth is at a record pace, recovering all but a handful of the jobs lost during the pandemic. That’s the good news. The bad news? Recruiting talent in today’s economy, with high inflation and a worker shortage, means you often have to pay them more. How can you deal with wage inflation and what can you expect to happen with worker costs in the year ahead? Here’s a look:

Evaluate your compensation.

If you don’t know whether what you’re offering candidates is competitive or in line with the industry, then now’s the time to find out. If you don’t have the in-house resources, then a compensation analyst can help. It’s vital to know how much you need to increase wages to keep pace.

For instance, according to the think tank the Conference Board, companies are setting aside 3.9% of their payroll budgets to raises in 2022, a record high not seen in a decade. These raises are expected to affect workers throughout company levels, from entry-level to executives, as well as hourly and salaried employees.

However, according to other industry experts, some companies are planning for even higher raises. Since raised were decided months ago, before the sharp increase in gas prices coupled with high inflation, it’s likely that many employers will be going beyond the 3.9% pay increase to offer more attractive compensation packages to the best candidates.

Look beyond pay to appeal to top talent.

If your budget is limited, what other perks beyond salary can you offer to candidates? Flexible scheduling is a huge benefit that can help you attract workers. Whether it’s fully remote work or a hybrid schedule, this will help your employees maintain a better work life balance, which is enormously appealing to candidates, especially younger ones.

Other advantages to consider promoting during your hiring process include professional, internal hiring and promotions, your workplace culture, and any other benefits that the competition doesn’t offer.

Make your case in a stronger job description.

In the job description, don’t simply discuss what you’re looking for in a candidate. It’s important instead to shine a light on why a someone would want to work for you. What makes you unique, special or attractive as an employer? Also, what actual work needs to be done? Rather than writing a stale description with endless bullets about requirements, explain the job in simple, clear terms and describe what makes your organization a top employer.

Cut down on requirements where you can.

Another way to find talented people? Consider loosening your requirements for qualifications. For instance, if a position required a Master’s degree or 10 years of experience in the past, consider loosening the requirement to a Bachelor’s degree and 5-7 years instead. This will open you up to more candidates who are eligible to apply.

Be open to different kinds of candidates.

In the past, you might have rejected those candidates who had been out of the workforce for a number of years or had big gaps in their work history. Now’s the time to consider all the possibilities. You never know whether your next great hire is a mom who’s been home for the past five years taking care of kids. So, if you haven’t hired these kinds of candidates in past, doing so now can open you up to a flood of new recruitment possibilities.

Create a candidate-centered application experience.

Many times, candidates complain about a cumbersome application processes and a lack of communication once they apply. Today, it’s more important than ever to make the application and hiring experience candidate-centered.

What does this look like? There should be less automation and more in-person interaction. Also, make it easy to apply, keep candidates in the loop, and try to streamline the interview process. This means skipping multiple rounds of interviews, presentations and evaluations that can take months.

Market your employer brand.

Recruiting and hiring is no picnic in today’s day and age. You therefore need to take steps that make your company stand out to potential new hires. To do that, create a compelling career page on your website, as well as social media profiles. Include photos, employee authored blogs, videos and other content that showcases the work you do and your unique company culture.

Focus on retention too.

The last thing you want to do in today’s climate is lose top employees. So don’t only focus on recruiting and hiring, but also retaining. Just like candidates, verify that your current workforce is being paid fairly and has access to the perks they want, from professional development to scheduling flexibility.

You can also talk to them directly about what other benefits or support they’d like to see at work. Rather than just guessing at what they want, this will give you a direct line into what they’re thinking and how you can best retain them.

Get help from a Houston staffing agency.

Another way to recruit and retain great candidates is with help from a Houston staffing agency. They can provide services, from a compensation analysis to hiring strategies, onboarding and training plans and more. This way, you can focus on other business priorities and get expert help recruiting new employees.

Ready for professional hiring help?

Murray Resources has been serving the Houston business community for over 30 years. In these unprecedented times, we can help your company navigate your way through sourcing, screening and hiring, so you’re optimally staffed with talented professionals. Meanwhile, you can build a stronger team and more profitable company. Simply contact us today to get started.