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The Top Issues Facing Manufacturing Recruiters in 2021

Manufacturing runs on the skills of its workers and there is a growing skill gap in America. According to a report from Deloitte and The National Association of Manufacturers, 4.6 million jobs need to be filled by 2028, and 2.4 million jobs are projected to go unfilled due to a lack of trained workers. And this was before the industry lost 1.4 million jobs during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Yet, the good news is we are already seeing signs of a recovery. As of January, manufacturing has recovered 803,000 of those jobs. The recovering economy will provide new opportunities for you to search for high-quality talent. As you prepare for a hiring surge and a renewed landscape, Jobvite is here to help. We’ve identified the top issues facing manufacturing recruiters and will help ensure you have the tools and knowledge to make the right decisions from source to hire and beyond.

Leveraging mobile technology to source and screen candidates

Finding high-quality skilled workers is hard enough. In our 2020 Recruiter Nation Survey, 61% of recruiters in manufacturing named a lack of skilled/qualified candidates as a top hiring challenge. Mobile technology such as texting can help. Yet while 59% of manufacturing recruiters are using texting technology to engage with current candidates, only 32% have used it for sourcing.

Texting can be used to build your future talent pipeline. For instance, you can engage passive candidates through a talent network (i.e., those potential applicants who are interested in your company but are not finding the right opportunity or ready to apply just yet). With Jobvite’s intelligent texting solutions, your team can nurture this audience via targeted text campaigns, job notifications, events notifications, and other content working towards conversion.

You can also use texting to reach thousands of candidates quickly with personalized texts. Include screening questions about required skills to ensure that you already have a skilled candidate when it comes time for that first interview.

Time-to-hire vs. quality-of-hire

According to our 2020 Recruiter Nation Survey, an overwhelming 63% of manufacturing recruiters said quality-of-hire is their most important metric for success. Yet, what about time-to-hire? Manufacturing companies need to fill open gaps on the assembly line fast, yet the focus is clearly on getting better-qualified workers. In fact, survey respondents noted improving quality-of-hire as their number one recruiting priority for the next year.

There’s the conundrum. Manufacturing recruiters want to improve on the quality of their hires, but not prolong their time-to-hire rates. Jobvite’s Talent Acquisition Suite will enable your organization to use artificial intelligence and automation to eliminate tedious administrative work such as scheduling and candidate scoring. With Jobvite handling the grunt work, recruiters are freed to focus on quality-of-hire.

Lack of an employer value proposition

In our 2020 Recruiter Nation Survey, we found that 49% of manufacturing recruiters listed strong competition from other employers as their top hiring challenge. This was 12% more than all industries combined. Win those strong candidates from competitors by showing them a career at your company – instead of just a job. Create a compelling employee value proposition that encourages workers to imagine a future with your organization. Highlight your benefits, your commitment to diversity and inclusion, and opportunities to grow.

Preparing for change

To quote Bob Dylan, “the times they are a-changin’.” While COVID-19 might be the most recent major disruption for manufacturers, it won’t be the last. Take the recent commitments to “going green” in the auto industry for example. As car manufacturers pledge to be fully electric in 10-15 years, they need to make sure they have the right skills in place for the future. For example, they will need top engineers and designers with experience in lithium battery technology. Jobvite’s recruiting technology will enable you to build and nurture expected talent pipelines in advance. When you’re ready to expand, you’ll have both an engaged talent pool and a leg up on your competition.

With Jobvite, you can have it all

When we asked manufacturing recruiters what technology would make their lives easier, 44% answered a new ATS system, while 29% wanted new CRM technology. With Jobvite, you can have both. Jobvite’s comprehensive end-to-end talent acquisition suite provides unmatched breadth and depth of functionality. There is no other solution built for talent acquisition that delivers the depth of capabilities from recruitment marketing to applicant management, new hire onboarding, employee referrals, and internal mobility. Request a demo and learn how we can help today.


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