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The Way Forward for Staffing Is to Embrace Disruption. Are You Ready to Disrupt?

Challenge and opportunity often go hand in hand for staffing. As technology transforms our industry, the rallying cry will be to act boldly and think outside the box.

The Way Forward for Staffing Is to Embrace Disruption. Are You Ready to Disrupt?
By: Penny Queller, Senior Vice President and General Manager for Staffing Solutions, Monster 
“Disrupt or be disrupted.”
Those words from Staffing Industry Analysts president Barry Asin have stuck with me long after any bit of tan has faded from SIA’s Executive Forum last February in Miami. 
The message from the conference remains more relevant than ever: our staffing industry needs future-proofing. In order to thrive, we staffing professionals must keep pace with an ever-changing labor landscape. “Anticipating client challenges is how to stay ahead,” said Asin. “We’re seeing a more strategic future, and in some ways a more challenging future.” I couldn’t agree more.
As always in staffing, challenges and opportunity go hand in hand. That includes an increase in contingency workers (globally, Asin noted a $3.5 trillion gig economy) and encroachment from non-traditional staffing firms. 
The good news: we can choose to respond to these variables by setting the right course of action and creating wins for our clients and for the talent they so desperately need. Let’s take a look at how we can go about doing so. 
Retain our humanity while embracing technology. As speakers at the forum noted, new technologies are evolving faster than ever, from chatbots to Bitcoin and everything in between. As such, technology will continue to present both threat and potential for the staffing industry.
I’ve written about the need for us in staffing to play catch-up on technology in order to remain relevant. In fact, my goal is to make Monster a digital partner for both software and solutions, so that our customers can stay on the cusp while focusing on what matters most: the talent. 
As we move forward, armed with tech tools and solutions, let’s not forget that our value as staffing professionals remains rooted in our humanity. When we treat our customers like family, and find ways to collaborate together, we do better and fly higher. Acting on those opportunities is about more than survival—it will enable us to move forward.
Our industry is addressing the skills gap with innovation. Another major challenge for staffing is the severe skills gap. As the economy grows, the supply of talent we need won’t be as readily available. Staffing firms are often called upon to fill hard-to-fill roles—but what if the talent pipeline just doesn’t exist?  
In response, Monster customers like Revature and HealthTrust Workforce Solutions are combining intensive, in-person training with job placement, providing a source of talent for the technology, healthcare and manufacturing industries. 
Ryan Craig, whose company University Ventures funds and develops some of these boot camp-style programs, sees the staffing industry as uniquely positioned to step into the training space. “We have a finger on the pulse of what employees are looking for: technical training, coupled with soft skills.” Craig envisions training as a possible revenue stream for staffing, creating what he calls “an entry-level talent supply business.” 
I’m eager to see where these solutions lead the industry. 
We need to see each other more fully. As Monster’s Chief Product Officer, Chris Cho has been frank about the need for evolution in recruitment. "Job sites today are so focused on keyword search results that it’s no longer a natural experience for the job seeker, particularly the passive job seeker.” In looking to the future of recruitment, Chris adds that “the job ad itself isn’t going to be the be all and end all.” 
The problem with both the traditional job ad and the resume is that they are two dimensional, and don’t allow recruiters and job seekers to see the full picture of each other. Monster is focused on delivering a next-gen experience that gives both candidates and companies to present better versions of themselves. 
If that doesn’t get your staffing wheels turning I don’t know what will! I look forward to sharing more with you about Monster’s new product roadmap in the coming months. In the meantime, you can check out Chris’ vision here in case you missed it.  
I’m encouraged that our industry is acknowledging some of the challenges and risks we face, rather than simply putting a 100% sunny forecast on a partly cloudy reality. We as staffing leaders need to recognize these challenges to create the best opportunities.  
We’ve been self-searching at Monster, reviewing everything with a fine-tooth comb to see where we’ve departed from a clear focus and where we provide actual value. We want to do better by you, and we recognize that it’s our job to make your job easier. 
I can’t wait to see what we’ll accomplish together.