Bridging the Gap – The Skills Gap, That Is!
A skills gap occurs when employees or prospective candidates don’t meet the required skills and needs of a company. There is a wide variety of theories and debates about why, or when this is happening. Unfortunately, the solution can be challenging.
For starters, knowing the skills your business requires, (and conveying that knowledge via adequate job descriptions) is essential. If the picture isn’t clear, a skills gap analysis may be your first step!
Meanwhile, 3 tools for building the bridge –
Purposeful Hiring – Choosing the right candidates requires a discerning eye.
- Watch for indications that a potential candidate can learn quickly, since specific job skills can often be taught during on-the-job training. (consider pre-employment tests to help screen candidates)
- Pay attention to an applicant’s experience that coincides with the distinctive knowledge and abilities that you know you are seeking.
- Don’t be afraid to go with your gut sometimes. Just because someone doesn’t “check off all of your boxes” doesn’t mean that they would not be a highly skilled employee.
- Widen your talent pool. Hire a vet. Look past a disability. Give an ex-felon a chance. (Giving those released from prison a second chance doesn’t mean throwing caution to the wind – you can still be smart about this.)
Solid Training and Strategy – Whether it’s that new hire who displayed a willingness to learn or a current employee who wants to step up, training can play a vital role in closing the gap.
- Ensure training is available and provide the necessary tools. Consider it an investment in your employees and ultimately, your company
- Offer opportunities for employees to build on their skill sets.
- Tap into highly skilled employees who are natural leaders/teachers.
Strategize on employee placement. People will often surprise you, and you’ll discover “hidden” talents that blossom in a new position.
Build Relationships with Educators – As they coach and prepare students for their next steps, ensure they know the needs of your business. Help them help you!
Connect with High School teachers and career counselors. Let them know which skill sets you require for entry-level positions. Many a student who isn’t college-bound is a great applicant.
Connect with college professors. Offer internships to Juniors. Invite soon-to-be graduates to interview with your company.
Just a reminder – ERG Staffing is here to help YOU connect with skilled workers. In partnering with us, you’ll tap into more than three decades of experience and dependable service. Whether you need temp, temp-to-hire, or direct-hire, we’re your talent source. We also offer on-site services and payrolling. ERG Staffing offers flexible partnership models to meet your unique needs. We take care of the headaches of recruiting and hiring, so you can focus on your business. Contact us today.