Can You Navigate This Candidate Driven Market?

As we begin a new year, Morris Bixby would like to share some trends we are seeing in this candidate driven market and how we can help you find the candidates you need to succeed.

Over the past three years the hiring market has shifted. In 2020 when Covid hit, agriculture hiring reduced substantially and many companies put a hold on all hiring. Candidates looking to change careers had fewer opportunities. However, in the past 2 years we have experienced a substantial increase (50%) in companies adding people and replacing agriculture professionals due to retirement. The result, candidates now have options and are in a position of strength when exploring career opportunities!

These high performers are receiving multiple offers and offer turndowns are up over 20%. Many companies are offering higher salaries, sign-on bonuses, and flexibility in working remotely or hybrid work environments. In addition, benefits including company vehicles are essential to the overall offering.

What are Candidates Looking For

In considering a prospective job, top candidates are asking themselves and potential employers some key questions, starting with – how is this a better opportunity? The opportunity can then be evaluated based on several criteria.

  • Challenge – Am I growing in my current position? Can I find a position with another company that encourages my personal growth and utilizes my abilities and skills
  • Location – Is the commute too long or especially inconvenient? Is remote or hybrid an option? Is the city or area a good place for my family to live?
  • Development/Advancement – Are there advancement opportunities? What are the potential next steps? Can the potential employer give examples of recent internal promotions and share specific career paths?
  • Compensation – Does the company pay a competitive salary? Is the overall package competitive? (Salary, annual incentive, long term incentive, and benefits)
  • Purpose – Is what they are being asked to do valuable? Is the work fulfilling and enjoyable? Will I be proud to work for this company?
  • Stability – Is the company known for laying people off? Has it been letting people go recently? Is it in danger of being taken over?
  • Culture – How are employees and customers treated and interacting?
  • Reputation – What does the marketplace say? Is the company reputable, ethical, and respected in the industry? 

Best Hiring Practices

By using Morris Bixby, our expertise and consultive approach can be a helpful addition to your ongoing business strategy. We can advise you on best practices for strategically seeking and hiring top candidates for your company.

  • Confirm that all the departments involved in the hiring process are onboard and on the same page
  • Research and understand compensation comparisons
  • Cast a wide net – we will engage and screen dozens of candidates
  • Build a base profile of top performers
  • Have an interesting position description and attractive pitch/offer
  • Interview based on core competencies

Fine Tune Your Hiring Process

Another key aspect our company can help you fine tune is the communication, interview, and hiring process with candidates. There are a few important things to remember when beginning the hiring process that will help find and retain top candidates.

  • Communicate and make sure the candidate understands the process from resume to offer
  • Keep the process moving – from search initiation to acceptance the candidate should be engaged. Slowing down the process results in counter offers and turndowns
  • Transparency – The #1 candidate objection is lack of feedback, let them know where they stand throughout the entire process
  • Preparation for interviewing – do all interviewers know the candidate, job, and company well? Consider the benefit of face-to-face vs virtual. Are all the interviews relevant and needed?

Need help finding top performers in this candidate-driven market?

Morris Bixby Group can provide you with high-quality agricultural candidates who remain engaged in the hiring process and beyond. Learn more today!


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