Changing jobs is getting harder as some companies cut back on hiring and because the process itself takes longer

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Changing jobs is getting harder as some companies cut back on hiring and because the process itself takes longer
Changing jobs could get trickier as some companies slow hiring and as the process takes longer.Robert Daly/OJO Images
  • Switching jobs is harder as some employers slow hiring and as the process itself is taking longer.
  • Talent Works' Jody Robie said hiring techniques that worked before the pandemic no longer do.
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Job hoppers beware: Making the leap to a new gig is becoming harder as companies rethink whether to fill some roles and as the hiring process can take longer.

Some companies that had only recently been eager to snap up workers are slowing or even halting hiring amid signs that rising prices and other headwinds are sapping consumer spending, a key driver of the US economy. Stocks have been sliding as investors worry that growth will stall.

All of this means that some people looking to change jobs — and companies that had been hoping to hire — could have a tougher time.

Talent Works, which provides recruiting tools, found in an April survey of 500 HR managers in the US and the UK that a majority said bringing on new people has been taking two to three times as long as it did in 2019. Among the reasons was a lack of quality candidates. The sluggish pace of hiring can hurt companies' performance because roles are going unfilled for too long, the survey found.

The problem could ease, of course, if the economy slows and companies trim their job listings. Yet for now, unemployment is low, and many open roles remain unfilled, so some employers have been having to rethink their hiring processes.

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Jody Robie, Talent Works' senior vice president and cofounder, said many of the HR procedures that worked before the pandemic, such as numerous in-person interviews, were no longer viable. Today, more of the process involves remote interviews. And communication and increased flexibility are more important than ever, especially as the economy shows signs it's shifting.

"Hiring freezes and pauses will happen, but it is how this is communicated internally to employees and externally to candidates that really makes the difference as far as causing a future recruitment challenge," Robie said.

She added that the changing landscape means companies need to be flexible with their recruiting strategy to quickly and efficiently hire, and job seekers should be aware that even though they still have many options in today's job market, there could be fewer roles available as companies reassess their needs.

In recent years spent navigating the pandemic, both big and small companies have realized how important it is to have a flexible recruiting process that can best match the demand for growth and slow when needed, Robie said. "You have to be able to have some agility to your hiring process," she added.

Some of the recent hiring challenges reflect stepped-up recruiting that started in 2021. There were so many open roles to fill that some HR departments got bogged down. That meant it often took longer to bring people aboard.

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The slowdowns in hiring can be bad for business if companies can't meet their customers' demands.

"Even worse is the threat of losing business due to attrition and overworked, stretched employees who don't have the motivation to continue to put in the extra hours," Robie said.

"The speed and agility of the process, and being able to be flexible in the new world of recruiting, are the keys to success right now," she said. "You can't hold on to what worked in the past, because it isn't working now."

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