Industry News: What Q4 Could Mean for the Staffing Industry

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An industry-wide increase is expected.

The staffing industry is projected to end the year on a high note, completing the year with seven percent year-over-year growth. The strongest sectors of the industry are forecast to be healthcare (17%), education (20%), finance and accounting (10%) and marketing/creative (10%).
According to the American Staffing Association, Quarter 3 of 2015 showed growth of nearly 6.5 percent in staffing placements, compared to Q3 of 2014. Each quarter of 2015 shows growth when compared to those in 2014. Q4 is projected to continue this upward trend.

According to a survey conducted by CareerBuilder, nearly 49 percent of employers in the U.S. plan to hire full-time staff in the second half of 2015. This is a whopping 47 percent increase from the second half of 2014. Nearly 28 percent of employers plan to hire part-time help, and 34 percent plant to hire temporary/contract workers in the second half of 2015, as well.

Strong Hiring Demand in Many Industries.

According to the CareerBuilder data, hiring managers across multiple industries plan on hiring in the last half of the year.  The top areas where employers plan to hire are:

  • Customer service – 31%
  • Sales – 23%
  • IT – 22%
  • Production – 18%
  • Accounting / Finance – 12%
  • Marketing – 11%
  • Human Resources – 9%

While these numbers reflect hiring manager plans for full-time hiring, the staffing industry will likely see comparable gains in temporary, temp-to-hire and direct hire services.

Implications.

This is a great time to be in the staffing industry, and opportunities abound for those firms that can find and deliver talent efficiently and cost-effectively to their clients. In order to capitalize on these trends, staffing firms will need to focus on:

  • The talent gap is getting larger, and the demand for skilled, experienced workers is getting larger. Staffing firms will need to strengthen their recruiting capabilities and should consider investing in additional recruiting staff, training for recruiters and staffing coordinators, outsourced or offshore talent sourcing, social recruiting, new strategies for recruitment marketing such as pay per click campaigns, automated distribution of job posts, and building and nurturing talent communities.
  • Growth capital. Many staffing firms will have opportunities to take on new clients and potentially large volumes of business. Access to working capital, and specifically payroll funding, may be a barrier to many smaller staffing organizations.
  • Operational efficiency. While demand for staffing services will continue to increase in Q4, employers are very likely to continue to push back against price / markup increases. While most staffing firms will experience increases in recruiting costs, it is unlikely that these expenses can be pushed through to employers. Staffing firms will need to look at other ways to streamline sales, recruiting and back-office operations to maintain profit margins.
  • Service line expansion. Given the strong demand for talent across so many skill disciplines, now might be an ideal time to pursue expansion into new vertical markets and job skills.
  • Increased competition for internal talent. We are already seeing staffing firms that are struggling to recruit internal team members, including sales reps, recruiters and branch managers. Now is the time to benchmark compensation packages and ensure adequate opportunities are being offered. We also recommend looking for ways to improve company culture to make your firm a best place to work for staffing professionals.

This article brought to you by Madison Resources

At Madison Resources, our mission is to make staffing firms more profitable. If your staffing company needs payroll funding, back office support, improved technology, and more timely performance reporting, we can help.