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Why your attraction strategy matters more than a looming recession.

By Jake Robinson

Just last week Sam Forsdick at Raconteur spoke with Brian Elliot SVP of Slack and they talked about the ability to attract, retain and engage talented people in the wake of a recession. 

Being in SaaS recruitment we always get these types of questions from our clients -  "how do we attract the best talent possible" & "how can we retain our staff"?

Throw a recession and one of the most competitive tech markets we have seen in a number of years into the mix and that's like asking how long is a piece of string.

Competitive salaries?

Table tennis tables and beer fridges?  

Early finishes on a Friday? 

Brian states in his chat with Ben that “The companies that win in three to five years from now will be the ones that take a much more flexible approach.”

"To hold on to talent, companies will have to employ flexible working practices. Flexibility is second only to compensation to keep talent, according to Future Forum research. While it can be challenging to improve compensation in recessionary times, providing flexibility need not come at an additional cost".

Honestly I think Brian's hit the nail on the head.

When speaking with candidates, we ask what is one thing you MUST have from your next job. 

Their answer? 


The world has changed since the pandemic and more forms of working have come into play.

Flexible working, hybrid working, intermittent working, whatever you want to call it.

But however you phrase it, it's more key now than ever.

This form of flexibility can come in many shapes and forms. Less days in the office, no more core working hours, no more excessive zoom meetings (I know we all feel the same about this). 

The tech industry has been the forefront of this for years which makes it an even more competitive landscape.  

Brian also states “So much of the conversation about flexibility has been about location. But 80% of people their survey want location flexibility – and the majority of those want to come together a couple of days a week – whereas 94% of people want schedule flexibility.” 

And that's what candidates are looking for. You won't be surprised at how many candidates we have had conversations with about their flexibility at work, and are constantly shocked to hear about such poor flexible working patterns. 

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not saying everyone who works from home is 'efficient' but if you're fishing in the top talent pool then there's no issues there.

Obviously a host of other benefits will also come into play, but the importance of flexibility will always be a big factor. 

And at the end of the day, the last thing you want in a recession is to start losing your staff to competitors or failing to attract new talent to keep the business in good shape.

Now I'm thinking about it, a beer fridge would be a decent purchase for the PIE office...

Competition for talent is a bigger concern than a recession, says Slack’s future of work expert. The tight labour market is the main concern for businesses right now – more than challenging economic conditions and rising input costs.

Read the original article here
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