Last year at this time, we were in the depths of the pandemic.
The vaccine had just started to become available, but widespread rollout was totally unclear. There was so much we didn’t know. Fear and apprehension clouded every decision, muting the employment market to a near whisper. There was a sense of holding back.
Now we are approaching two years of living with COVID-19. And while there are still so many challenges, in the areas of work and professional meaning, at least, we have a clearer path ahead.
Going into 2022, the employment space is clearly in a period of massive change. We’re seeing the country’s workforce embrace a lot of things that Agency HR'S pioneered—like values-based job search, employee-generated video content and attending hybrid events—which are so exciting for us.
Most of all, we love that there have been near-universal acceptance of the fact that GREAT TALENT is in the DRIVER'S SEAT. Companies have been saying for years that “our people are our biggest asset,” but market conditions are finally forcing them to act like it. Every day, employers are approaching us. How do they build a company that the best people on the market will want to work for? And how can they communicate that externally in a way that resonates?
Frankly, you can find those a lot of places!—but to be able to research those opportunities and those companies in a way that will help you assess whether it’s the right fit for you.
And for employers, it was important that we help them understand and communicate their company culture, values, and work environment, so they’re finding the right hires who will stay and be successful. It’s about the success of the match over time (retention), not just that initial connection (the hire). For too long, the job search industry focused on fill over fit..
Looking ahead into 2022, we want to make job search even more personalized by doubling down on employee-sourced content, video, and user experience. We also want to make our career resources and job search, plus our trusted advice, in-depth company profiles, and personalized career coaching, even more accessible.
Looking more broadly, we’re also excited by the progress we’re seeing society-wide on issues of diversity, equity, and belonging—though we know there’s still a long way to go when it comes to building truly inclusive workplaces.
As we leave behind more remnants of the industrial revolution’s factory-based work norms, how do we make the workplace actually work for everyone? Our collective understanding of flexible work is also in its infancy: We typically categorize people as either full-time or part-time, but in 2022, expect to see the rise of many more forms of work—four-day work weeks, part-time work weeks, specific arrangements that work for specific situations. Return-to-office will also, of course, remain an ongoing conversation, as will figuring out how to be hybrid—which is easier said than done.
If we could sum up our vision for the year ahead in one word, it’s renaissance. Even as the pandemic continues to cast its shadow over every aspect of our lives, people are creating a new spring for their careers and reimagining what work can look like. That’s very resonant for Agency. And we’ve all got a lot of work to do.
So, what’s your word for 2022? What are your professional goals for the year ahead, and how can The Agency HR'S help? Share with us on social by tagging @APhrsmgmt