The Reality of Rolling Layoffs

With the pandemic almost over, employees still face the harsh reality of rolling layoffs. Recently, some of the biggest tech companies in Silicon Valley announced radical layoffs. From Twitter to Amazon, Microsoft to Meta, thousands have been laid off.

Employees are bearing the brunt of job cuts. Amazon, Meta, and Microsoft have announced sweeping job cuts following Twitter’s lead. With all that’s happening in the world, including plunging economies and inflation, managers have a shorter capacity to over hire and are investing in fewer employees to directly impact business execution.

Financial hurdles and overall market volatility call for structural changes within the workforce. Before the pandemic, many companies hired spontaneously; however, many companies now carefully scrutinize who does the job and how.

Even though this might sound daunting, there is still space within the workforce. Consider a few strategies businesses are currently employing to fill positions within the workplace.  

Filling Fewer Open Positions

Firing employees is not something employers want to instinctively do. Nevertheless, many companies are not able to overhire. One of the primary reasons is that the labour force is undergoing a restructuring strategy because of the economy. 

The economy is not within a growth period, so employees and investors are still more cautious about hiring. If they have 30 open positions, they only fill 15 of them.

Engaging in Top Priority Employees

During inflation, it is only valid that companies seek top talent. With fewer employees doing the job, it’s more relevant for companies to seek top qualified candidates. While many employees might leave a job for better benefits, several companies are consolidating talent.

They are investing in fewer employees with better pay benefits. One-on-one manager meetings and direct communication are imperative. If there are any issues with behaviour change or an increase in unjustified absenteeism, they are addressed head-on.

Cultivating Intrapreneurship

The reality is today’s employees are more likely to change jobs than ever before. To avoid the revolving door pattern, companies are investing in intrapreneurship. This strategy makes companies value their employees. Employees want to see tangible results for their work and offering them the opportunity to feed their entrepreneurial spirit makes them feel valued.

Prioritizing employee development speaks volumes about a company’s corporate culture. One of the best ways companies can do that is by giving employees full ownership of projects, goals, or teams to lead. These initiatives make employees feel appreciated, and are a strong incentive and motivating factor to make them stay longer with a company.

What is the Future of the Labour Market?

The labour market in Canada is adapting to numerous changes, from the rapid shift to remote work to the changing economy, and the effects of a global pandemic. Given the shifting workplace landscape, many employees and workers are moving between jobs.

These career changes are taking place in a tightening labour market. According to Statistics Canada, there are 323,100 job vacancies in Ontario alone. More jobs are staying vacant longer, and many vacancies remain unfilled for a longer period. Despite the changing landscape in the workforce, research by Statistics Canada showed that the labour market continued to evolve last year. Employment rates are slowly recovering to pre-pandemic levels. Despite the growth, labour market conditions remained tight in 2022, with a high number of job vacancies peaking at 1.0 million in May 2022.

With the rising cost of living and inflation, the average wage has also increased, rising by more than 5 per cent on a year-over-year basis since the summer of 2022, according to Statistics Canada. Nonetheless, Statistics Canada estimates that the increase in the average wage has not kept pace with the current inflation, which has reached exponential levels not seen since 1991. 

Undoubtedly, the job market has changed and will continue to change in the coming future. When it comes to the future of work, more jobs are automated, and the ones that are not will require people skills. Since the job shortage isn’t going away, economists are advising employers to recruit creatively. Employers should tap into the demographics with higher unemployment rates, which include young people, immigrants, and part-time employees.

David Messiha | Staff Writer 



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