5 Reasons Why Prioritizing Skills is Crucial in Your Recruitment Efforts

In today’s job market, employers are struggling to find qualified individuals amongst an influx of applicants due to increased search intensity. Skills-based hiring is just one of many strategies that can help you stay ahead of the curve and maximize your recruitment efforts. By deploying efficient hiring practices you can quickly find the talent you need for your team.

Skills-based hiring focuses on the specific skills and abilities of an individual rather than their educational background or past working experience. Ultimately, this asses candidates’ potential to learn and adapt rather than their formal qualifications.

This shift in hiring strategy has benefits for both job seekers and employers. Job seekers can demonstrate they have the required skills to be successful in a role and shift the focus away from credentials or titles. Similarly, employers can identify candidates with transferable abilities and greater potential by evaluating skills rather than solely relying on credentials. This allows them to create more accurate job descriptions that target their exact requirements while streamlining their hiring process. Ultimately, adopting a skills-based approach to hiring is crucial in the current job market and can lead to more successful hires and overall business success.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss 5 reasons why implementing a skills-based hiring approach is a must in your recruitment strategy.

1. Streamlines Your Recruiting Process

Amongst tightening market conditions in today’s economy, job seekers have increased search intensity by 26% in the U.S compared to last year. Consequently, businesses have to spend extra time screening applicants to find those that are the best fit for their company’s culture and job requirements. The skills-first approach makes the hiring process faster as it identifies key skills candidates need to be successful. This results in highly skilled candidates that are a great fit for your company’s culture and goals.

Skills-based hiring is essential for businesses to better understand their talent needs and identify the right people with the right skills for each role. This approach is especially important in a tightening job market as it enables employers to be more efficient and effective in their recruitment process, reducing time wasted on inaccurate hires. By adopting skills-based hiring into their recruiting processes, businesses can quickly identify qualified candidates who have the skills they need.

2. Expands Your Candidate Pool for Maximum Efficiency

In today’s competitive labor market, widening the hiring pool is more important than ever before. Hiring managers need to find the best talent to drive their business forward, and that means looking beyond traditional sources of recruitment.

One of the significant benefits of a skills-first hiring approach is that it can expand a company’s labor pool and attract a more diverse range of candidates. When employers prioritize skills over traditional qualifications, they open up opportunities for individuals who may not have had access to formal education or who have pursued non-traditional career paths.

According to recent LinkedIn data, “talent pools expand 10x when using a skills-first approach.” This includes greater women representation, younger worker participation, and more workers without bachelor’s degrees. Ultimately, the skills-first talent strategy not only helps you access untapped talent but also results in diverse candidates than previous methods.

3. Maximizes Job Fit & Satisfaction

Skills-based hiring helps to ensure that candidates have the specific competencies required for the job, leading to better job fit. When employees are a good match for their roles, they perform better and are more productive. This is because they have the necessary skills and experience to complete their tasks effectively, reducing the need for extensive training or supervision.

When employees are a good fit for their roles, they are also more likely to feel satisfied and engaged in their work. They may feel more confident in their abilities, leading to higher job satisfaction, increased motivation, and a sense of purpose in their work. This, in turn, can lead to lower turnover rates, as employees are more likely to stay with an organization where they feel valued and engaged.

Overall, better job fit is a critical factor in employee success and retention. Skills-based hiring helps to ensure that employees have the necessary skills and experience to succeed in their roles, leading to improved performance, job satisfaction, and retention rates.

4. Presents Opportunity for Upskilling

Skills-based hiring presents a significant business opportunity for companies to upskill their workforce and address skill gaps. By prioritizing skills over traditional qualifications during the recruitment process, businesses can identify areas where their current employees may need more training or development. This can be especially beneficial for roles that require specific technical skills or knowledge. Additionally, by hiring individuals based on skills, companies can attract top talent who possess the necessary expertise to fill existing gaps.

Upskilling can also be a way to replace underperforming employees with skilled talent, thereby improving results and productivity. As a bonus, investing in employee training and development can lead to greater job satisfaction, higher retention rates, and a culture of continuous improvement. Ultimately, by embracing a skills-based approach to hiring, companies can ensure they have the right talent in place to meet current and future demands while fostering a culture of learning and growth.


At Award Staffing, we understand the importance of skills-based hiring and are dedicated to helping employers find the perfect fit for each role. Our team of experienced recruiters is always on hand to help employers source the best candidates for their open positions. With our skills-based approach, employers can be confident that they are getting the most qualified and dedicated professionals for their teams. Contact us to learn more about our services today!

The Great Rebalance

Over the course of the last 5-years, we have experienced a whirlwind in Twin Cities when it comes to hiring. From 2017 through 2019, we started to experience this concept of “unemployeement,” that’s correct, unemployeement is not unemployment. “Unemployeement” or shortage of workers is based on the German word “Arbeiterlosigkeit,” coined by Stepstone CEO Sebastian Dettmers. The lead-up to the COVID-19 Pandemic was filled with record-low unemployment rates of the low 3% and historical labor force participation rates, which, for those who are reading this and were in positions of hiring during that time, was difficult. It was difficult to find the right talent, it was difficult to know what wages were fair, and all in all, it felt like a “war for talent” at times.

Then in March 2020, the world was hit with a whole new issue of worldwide uncertainty. The pandemic resulted in a drastic shift in the Twin Cities job market, where companies had to furlough or lay off their employees suddenly, where unemployment rates were akin to that of the Great Recession. Then fast-forward a few months from the national stay-at-home orders, we were met with the whiplash of ultra-low unemployment coupled with a 50-year low participation rate of working-aged individuals. Then, the war for talent broke out again but with more dire circumstances.

The “unemployeement” of 2019 had not completely been realized until the post-COVID-19 outbreak. The pandemic ultimately accelerated the path we were already on in the Twin Cities labor market. The pandemic has served as an agent of change, setting the stage for what could be the next 3-years of hiring. Companies now had to compete over a much smaller labor force while also having to fulfill record high demand for goods and commodities. Businesses had to find ways to compete for talent, resulting in increased wages, signing bonuses, and more, which has been fully realized through inflation.

The Twin Cities job market has been in flux for the last 5 years, but it is one that is full of opportunities. The pandemic has only served to accelerate the already existing trends, and businesses must be prepared for whatever comes next to find success in their hiring. As we all cautiously lead into 2023, the coined phrase “The Great Rebalance” of hiring has begun. What we have known as an employee market for the better part of the last two years is subtly shifting to where employers have some control. And we use the phrase “employers have some control” advantageously because the challenges are the same but different, which we will discuss throughout the course of this article.

The key takeaway is that while still challenging, the Twin Cities job market has become much more fluid in a post-pandemic world. Employers must be prepared to adapt and change to succeed in their hiring endeavors, no matter what comes next. The war for talent is still on, and those who are prepared will find success. It is mission-critical that businesses know how to position themselves to stay ahead of the competition when it comes to talent. With the right strategy and information, businesses can ensure that they are on their way to becoming employers of choice in the Twin Cities job market.

What Will The Future of Hiring Look Like?

We are going to methodically back into current hiring trends along with things you can do from a recruiting perspective by starting with a deep look into the overall future of hiring. This is an easier way for us to show our “math” on how we got from point A to point B. We believe this perspective will ring true for the long term and in the near months to come.


This is how we come back to our earlier phrase, “employers have some control,” with the keyword being “some,” in the future of hiring in the Twin Cities. If you are unfamiliar with the word “Sansdemic,” it is a word coined for the new normal that has developed in today’s job market. The word simply means “without people” or “without enough people.” The Sansdemic reflects the combination of pre-pandemic, pandemic, and post-pandemic trends that employers now face. To put it even more simply, there are more open jobs than there are people to fill them—or people who are willing to fill them.

As we talked about in the introduction, Sansdemic was a path that we were already not just locally but globally, and the Pandemic kicked it into overdrive. There are three parts to this cycle that have quietly been forming for decades but are now being put into full swing. They are; lower birth rates, increased retirements, and a significant decline in the labor force participation rate.

1. Low Birth Rates

The first part of the cycle is lower birth rates. Since the explosion of the births of the baby boomers in the mid-1940s to early 1960s, birth rates have been steadily declining. This is a trend that has been seen not just in the US but also in most developed countries. The average number of baby boomers born was 4.3 per woman, but now that number is hovering around 1.6 per woman in the US, with most other developed nations following suit.

The trend of low birth rates can occur for various reasons, such as decreased fertility rates, changes in societal attitudes toward having children, economic factors, or a shift towards urbanization and smaller living spaces. As a result of fewer people being born, fewer people are entering the workforce and available to be hired.

2. More Retirements

The second part of the cycle is an increase in the retirement rate. The consequence of having lower birth rates is met head-on with an increase in the retirement rate. Baby boomers are now retiring at a faster rate than what is being replaced by younger generations. The rate of retirement has increased from under 10% in the 1990s to around 15-17% today and is projected to continue to rise. This means that for every one person that is entering the workforce, there are 1.5-1.7 people leaving it.

What complicates the issue even further is that the retirement age has been steadily increasing since the mid-1980s, meaning that more people are staying in the workforce longer. This is great news for employers who will be able to benefit from their experience and knowledge, but it also means that those jobs will be filled for longer, potentially limiting the amount of new talent that can enter the workforce.

3. Decline in Laborforce Participation

The last part of this cycle is a significant decline in labor force participation. This means that fewer people are actively seeking or participating in the job market. This can happen for a variety of reasons, such as an inability to find work that matches their skill set, students opting out of the workforce to pursue higher education, or people taking a break from work to care for family members.

An unforeseen consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic was the significant impact on labor force participation. Many workers have left the workforce due to health concerns or caregiving responsibilities, particularly women and men ages 24-34, who have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. This fascinating shift in labor dynamics has been influenced by a growing trend amongst young men, who opt to stay with their parents without a college degree and do not prioritize formal employment. Adding to this intriguing landscape is the emergence of the gig economy, where individuals combine multiple short-term, contractual jobs to earn a living. This innovative employment structure often eliminates the desire for many to return to conventional full-time positions, creating an ever-evolving labor market.

Becoming a Culture of Choice

As the three parts of this cycle come together, employers are facing an increasingly difficult task of finding the right people to fill their open roles. To move beyond the cycle of low birth rates, increased retirements, and declining labor force participation, employers must focus on becoming a culture of choice. This means creating an attractive workplace for job seekers.

Creating an environment where your organization is considered a “Culture of Choice” extends far beyond competitive salaries and attractive job postings; it is deeply rooted in cultivating a culture that demonstrates genuine appreciation and respect for its employees. As experts in the field of workplace dynamics, we understand that becoming a culture of choice requires conscious efforts to foster a positive work atmosphere where employees feel valued, inspired, and connected to the organization’s mission. Establishing such a culture bolsters employee loyalty and productivity and naturally attracts top talent, enabling your business to thrive and continue its upward trajectory.

We see successful businesses effectively position themselves as an employer of choice by cultivating a culture of inclusivity, transparency, and open communication, where employers can express genuine respect and appreciation for their team members. This results in improved collaboration, innovation, and company growth. Businesses can effectively leverage each team member’s unique talents and experiences by fostering a workplace where diverse perspectives and ideas are valued. Open dialogue empowers employees to feel respected, appreciated, and motivated to contribute meaningfully to their organization’s objectives.

By fostering a culture where employers acknowledge and appreciate the contributions of each team member, they facilitate an ambiance of trust, camaraderie, and profound loyalty. These qualities equip businesses to navigate volatile market scenarios with agility and resilience while capitalizing on emerging opportunities. Ultimately, employers that prioritize becoming an employer of choice are better positioned to attract and retain the best talent, reduce turnover costs, and increase overall productivity.

Recruitment Versus Hiring

As the hiring market continues to evolve along with the labor force dynamics, employers must be mindful of the distinction between recruitment and hiring. Recruiting and hiring are two terms often used interchangeably, but they actually refer to different aspects of finding and selecting new employees for a job.

Recruiting refers to the process of identifying and attracting potential job candidates to apply for a position within an organization. This can involve various methods such as headhunting, employee referrals, networking, and using recruitment agencies. The goal of recruiting is to create a pool of qualified candidates who are interested in the job and are willing to undergo the hiring process.

Hiring, on the other hand, refers to the process of selecting the best candidate from the pool of applicants generated during the recruiting process. This involves reviewing resumes, conducting interviews, and assessing the candidates’ qualifications, skills, and suitability for the job. The goal of hiring is to choose the most qualified candidate who will meet the organization’s needs and contribute to its success.

In today’s rapidly changing business climate, the hiring landscape has shifted to what is known as a Sansdemic world – where businesses must constantly adapt and innovate to remain competitive in the new normal. Employers must embrace forward-thinking talent acquisition strategies to optimize their processes and ensure they attract and retain the best candidates in the market. Gone are the day of waiting for people to apply for a job posting. Employers must take a proactive approach to meet their talent needs. The employees you want are not actively looking for jobs. The business’s approach needs to go far beyond paying the most and having the most Indeed job postings; it will be about adopting a recruiting approach that involves targeting candidates and actively engaging with them through diverse methods such as employee referral programs, digital recruiting strategies, and even creating online communities to build relationships.

What’s Happening in the Twin Cities Talent Market?

Alright, we can put away our crystal ball as we took a significant look into the future of hiring and some of its associated hurdles. But what’s currently happening in the Twin Cities talent market?

This is where we are starting to see what we call “The Great Rebalance,” where local businesses now have somewhat of an upper hand in the hiring process, an advantage that has been quite elusive in recent years. Indeed, the keyword here is ‘some’ latitude, but it’s a tectonic shift nonetheless. Twin Cities employers are subtly regaining control and overcoming hiring challenges.

Employers recognize the value of hiring the right people with a range of skills and experiences for their business as opposed to hiring just anyone. There’s a growing realization that it is essential to invest in quality talent acquisition and retention strategies, embrace diversity and inclusion as part of their culture, to amplify their recruitment processes.

While the talent market is still highly competitive, hiring decisions are becoming increasingly important; there are a few local trends that we are seeing in the Twin Cities hiring Market.

Manufacturing and Warehousing

The Twin Cities is truly its own microcosm of the larger national job market. Over 2022, many industries experienced an unfathomable uptick in demand, leading to record-setting unemployment rates and a robust hiring boom.

The two industries that were benefactors of this surge in demand were Manufacturing and Warehousing. The demand for manufacturing and warehousing talent over the last few years is due to the ongoing shift in consumer spending patterns. With more consumers buying online, the demand for these specialized skills has increased significantly, creating a surge in job openings.

This resulted in employers being forced to be more open-minded about the type of skills and experience they were looking for in candidates. Employers began looking for candidates with the right attitude and aptitude to fulfill these roles, even if they lacked some of the specific technical skills.

At times we were experiencing upwards of 3 job openings for every unemployed candidate. With the Federal Reserve imposing a tapering of rate hikes over the last 9 months, many employers are taking a more strategic and thoughtful approach to hiring. As we come to a close to Q1, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary that there are about 1.9 open industrial jobs for every unemployed worker.

As the Twin Cities manufacturing and warehousing market is starting to stabilize, we are starting to witness some key trends in each of these respective industries;

Key Warehousing Trends

The pandemic has undeniably had a transformative impact on various industries, with warehousing employment emerging as a particularly dynamic sector. During the initial stages of pandemic recovery, warehousing took the lead in the labor market, boasting substantial job creation that made a lasting impression. This can be attributed to rapid shifts in consumer demand incited by the changing landscape of the global economy.

As we cautiously ease our way into 2023, we are starting to feel the influence exerted by the Federal Reserve. As we move forward, we have observed a tapering of hiring rate hikes, causing warehousing hiring to either remain stable or experience a slight contraction. Consequently, although it seems that warehousing employment may have reached its zenith in 2022, it is unlikely to see the historic gains made in 2020 through 2022 anytime soon.

Key Manufacturing Trends

Hiring professionals in the manufacturing sector has been through a lot since the pandemic. Labor demand has nearly doubled where it was two years before must feel like whiplash, where it was mission-critical to keep up with production demand. This ultimately forced businesses to make hiring decisions with candidates that didn’t quite meet the standards they would have normally set.

Unlike warehousing, the manufacturing sector is minutely softening; we are still seeing a flurry of activity, with manufacturers adapting to changing consumer demand. We are seeing a strategic shift in hiring manufacturing talent across the board, where it is no longer about needing 5 individuals with the same skillset but rather finding 2 talented individuals that can bring a unique combination of aptitude and technical skill. As we round off the first quarter, we anticipate that this trend will continue throughout 2023 and beyond.

Overall, the Twin Cities job market continues to exhibit signs of strength and resilience as we move into 2023. Despite some slowdown in hiring in certain sectors, there is still a significant amount of opportunity for job seekers with the right skills and qualifications. With the Federal Reserve making decisions to keep the market stable, there is some stability for employers in the near future. Job seekers who are prepared with the right skills and qualifications will make the most of this opportunity, while employers must also remain vigilant in their recruitment efforts to ensure they are hiring the right candidates to help their businesses succeed.

The Cold, Hard Consequences of Job Hopping

Ah, remember those delightful days of sifting through countless resumes only to find candidates with the dizzying job-hopping history of a 100-meter hurdler? Fear not, for it seems the era of the reluctant hire may be drawing to a close! That’s right, no longer must you fret over whether the constant changing of jobs was due to a thirst for adventure, sheer indecisiveness, or a latent fugitive on the run. As educational and humorous as those discussions were, the job market is evolving, and trends indicate a more stable and committed workforce is on the horizon. So breathe a sigh of relief, and get ready actually to form a long-lasting rapport with your team!

With the economy and job growth slowing down, employers now have the leverage to demand more from their employees. They increasingly expect a candidate to have a more consistent work history and to stay with a single employer. Job hopping has become less desirable, as employers are now more likely to hire someone who demonstrates commitment, loyalty, and stability.

This shift in hiring preferences is particularly noticeable with millennials, who are often seen to have high job-hopping tendencies, where they have been chasing the almighty dollar. This means that chronic job hoppers are likely to face more serious consequences in the job market, while those who have shown stability with one or two employers will be rewarded.

We are seeing that our clients in the manufacturing sector have taken notice of such trends, and many are now more mindful about constructing roles for employees that offer long-term career growth opportunities. This means that job seekers need to look at their careers with more foresight and develop a long-term plan before taking any job. The upshot means that job seekers need to be prepared to show employers the skills they possess and their ability to commit to a role long-term.

This shift is a sign that the job market is maturing, and employers are becoming more astute in their hiring practices. Those who can demonstrate commitment and loyalty to their employers and possess the aptitude and technical skills for the role will be rewarded in the job search. As a result, this will allow businesses to cultivate a “culture of choice” that fosters innovation, collaboration, and success.

Wage Growth Leveling Off

For several years, the manufacturing and warehousing sectors have experienced a remarkable period of expansion, with a consistent increase in the demand for labor leading to significant wage growth. From 2019 to the end of 2022, the average growth in wages for an entry-level position was just under 12%. Historically the average wage growth over a three-year span is much lower, between 5-7%. Another way to look at this was that in 2019, an average entry-level warehouse worker was paid between $14 and $15 per hour. By the end of 2022, that same candidate was commanding between $19 to $20 per hour to perform those same job duties.

The incessant wage surge within these industries reflects the urgent need for workers in the face of consumer demands and the sheer shortage of workers, aka the Sandemic. However, recent trends indicate that this rapid ascent may be reaching a plateau, primarily due to inflation and curbed demand for any ordinary candidate. Now, with the Federal Reserve hitting the breaks on inflation and employers being more cautious in their hiring practices, which is ultimately resulting in a leveling off of wage growth. This slower growth is giving employers more control over their cost management, which means job seekers may find fewer opportunities within the wage ranges they believe they are qualified for.

Employers must constantly be vigilant in their recruitment strategies to secure the most talented and devoted candidates for their organization. A competitive salary is essential but not the sole factor ensuring a harmonious and successful employment relationship. In addition to financial compensation, organizations must consider the intangible aspects of the employment experience that contribute to an employee’s loyalty and dedication. Factors such as organizational culture, work-life balance, and overall job satisfaction play a pivotal role in attracting and retaining top talent. A workplace that fosters collaboration, promotes mutual respect, and values individual growth will more likely appeal to skilled professionals, ultimately leading to a more committed and productive workforce.

What Does This Mean for Recruiting and Hiring?

As we talked about what the future holds and what we are currently experiencing, we hope you can start to get a feel for the “some” control businesses are gaining back in the hiring market. With that said, according to all available data, it looks like candidates will continue to have the advantage for years to come. This is largely due to a greater number of job openings than job seekers available to fill those roles.

Ultimately, employers need to provide job seekers with meaningful and rewarding employment experiences to attract the best talent. Companies should also invest in their recruitment strategies and tools to find, hire, and retain the right people. Employers can create an environment that attracts the most talented and dedicated professionals by developing a comprehensive strategy that includes strategic compensation, attractive benefits packages, and a culture of choice. This not only helps to create and maintain a motivated, successful workforce but also encourages employees to stay with the organization for an extended period of time.

Employers can create more effective recruitment and hiring strategies by understanding current and future job market trends. While wages may have plateaued, employee engagement and satisfaction should remain paramount within an organization. With the right approach, employers can secure top talent and create a dedicated workforce that will propel them to success.

While it may feel okay to become complacent with an approach to hiring in uncertain times, it is important to remember that job seekers are still in control of the market balance. Employers must remain vigilant in their efforts to attract and retain the best talent to ensure long-term success. We have four key hiring recommendations that can aid any organization in hiring the right people and creating a successful team:

  1. Hire for the Future, Not for Today
  2. Experiment with Headhunting
  3. Upgrading Your Existing Talent
  4. Always Be Improving Communication

1. Hire for the Future, Not for Today

In the midst of overwhelming uncertainty in the financial markets, it can seem inconceivable to shift our focus away from present concerns and start planning for the future. However, as counterintuitive as it may appear, turbulent times present a unique opportunity for companies to reassess and prioritize their talent acquisition strategies for long-term success.

By looking beyond immediate challenges and anticipating future needs, organizations can attract and retain the right talent to navigate the evolving landscape, adapt to unexpected changes, and ultimately thrive in the face of adversity. Therefore, even in times of uncertainty, it is imperative to prioritize strategic hiring decisions and invest proactively in building a strong foundation for the future success of your business.

Hiring for the future is important because it ensures that a company has the right talent in place to achieve its long-term goals and remain competitive in an ever-changing business environment. Here are a few reasons why it is important to hire for the future, not just for today:

Business Needs Are Continuously Evolving

Businesses are constantly evolving, and the skills and expertise needed to succeed today may not be the same as those needed in the future. Hiring for the future means looking beyond current business needs and anticipating future needs to ensure that the company has the right talent in place to address those needs. This level of foresight can serve as a pivotal change in safeguarding long-term growth and success, as it enables companies to make strategic moves and assemble a workforce suitable for forthcoming exigencies. Thus, to effectively steer through the labyrinth of the ever-changing market, businesses must prioritize anticipatory measures and adopt a proactive approach towards securing the human capital necessary for navigating a rapidly evolving market.

Creating a Competitive Advantage

Hiring for the future can give a company a competitive advantage. By identifying and hiring individuals with skills and expertise that are in high demand or emerging, a company can position itself to lead the way in its industry and stay ahead of the competition. This forward-thinking approach can help an organization differentiate itself from its competitors, making it more attractive to potential employees and customers.


The concept of cost-effectiveness plays a crucial role in today’s highly competitive and dynamic business landscape. Investing in hiring practices that focus on the future can significantly contribute to an organization’s cost-effectiveness in the long run. By strategically recruiting professionals with diverse skills and expertise, companies are better equipped to adapt to ever-changing market demands and evolving industry trends.

This approach not only streamlines a business’s operations and increases its agility but also minimizes the constant need to recruit new talent when fresh skill sets are required. In turn, this cost-effective hiring strategy fosters a more sustainable and resilient workforce poised to tackle future challenges and drive the company towards long-term success.

Increased Employee Retention

Organizations can enhance their employee retention rates by committing to a forward-thinking approach in their recruitment and development strategies. By investing in the growth and development of their employees, employers can create a sense of loyalty and satisfaction among their staff members. This ultimately results in longstanding employee relationships that benefit the individuals and contribute to the organization’s overall success. In essence, fostering an atmosphere where individuals believe that their professional ambitions are aligned with their company’s long-term vision is an effective way to reinforce employee retention and continuity.

No matter how uncomfortable it may feel to assess your talent acquisition strategy in the face of uncertainty, ensuring that your company has the right people in place for long-term success is essential. By investing time and resources into hiring for the future, organizations can create a competitive edge and remain successful even during turbulent times.

The best way to approach recruitment and hiring in uncertain times is by focusing on creating the right environment for your employees and investing in the development of their skills. By understanding your business needs and hiring people with the potential to become future leaders, you can create a sustainable competitive edge that will keep your company thriving even in times of change.

Remember, although it is essential to have an effective hiring strategy in place during uncertain times, it is also important to be flexible and open to change when needed. By taking a proactive approach to talent acquisition and focusing on the future, you can ensure that your company will remain successful in the long run.

2. Experiment with Headhunting

As we look at the potential of a recession, it will, without a doubt, increase the unemployment rate in Minnesota. As we write this article, the state’s unemployment rate is hovering around 2.8%, an uptick from 1.7% in Q3 of 2022. Nonetheless, this is still one of the lowest in the country. Looking back at 2018 and 2019, the Twin Cities metro area saw about a 3.7% unemployment rate with, at times, left the caliber of talent to be desired. Even if unemployment potentially hits the high 3% to low 4% marks, we are still going to experience a competitive landscape.

Why? Because in most scenarios, the individuals that are sitting on the proverbial sideline should beckon the question, “Why” due to what the overarching data tells us. Unemployment isn’t the answer or the only factor to consider when it comes to recruiting and hiring top talent. So, we strongly suggest that organizations experiment with different hiring channels; one specific option is headhunting.

If you’re not familiar with headhunting, headhunting is a strategic approach employed by organizations to attract top-notch talent in today’s competitive job market. With more than one in three recently hired Americans asserting that a potential employer approached them, it’s clear that this method is crucial for businesses seeking exceptional candidates. Rather than hoping that the perfect candidate will stumble upon your job posting, headhunting takes a proactive stance by actively searching for skilled professionals, contacting them directly, and inviting them to consider a position within your organization.

The power of headhunting lies in its targeted and intimate approach, allowing employers to truly understand and appreciate the value of potential employees while actively marketing their company as a desirable workplace. It demonstrates a commitment to excellence and a dedication to fostering growth within the organization, making it a leading method for acquiring top talent in today’s increasingly competitive job market.

However, headhunting can also be a complex and time-consuming process, as it requires extensive research and outreach to potential candidates. Establishing connections and fostering relationships with prospective talents requires a significant investment of time and effort that a business may not be willing to make on its own and may leverage an employment agency to help with this task. The key with headhunting is you are actively recruiting someone away from a job they are potentially not considering leaving. This means your value proposition needs to be strong and resilient: a winning combination of salary, benefits, opportunity, and company culture.

The good news is that headhunting, when done right, can be a great way to acquire hard-to-find candidates and create a competitive edge even during any market constraints. By taking a proactive approach in recruiting and focusing on the future, you can ensure that your company will remain successful in the long run.

3. Upgrading Your Existing Talent

Talent upgrading is a strategic recruiting and hiring approach involving identifying and replacing underperforming employees with higher-quality candidates. It is a proactive process that focuses on continuously improving an organization’s talent quality.

The methodology for talent upgrading requires employers to identify recurring issues, predict future needs, and develop a proactive plan to replace problem employees. The process of talent upgrading typically involves the following steps:

 Identify underperforming employees:

The first step in talent upgrading is identifying employees who are not meeting expectations or underperforming in their roles.

Assess the current talent pool:

The next step is to assess the current talent pool within the organization and determine what skills and experience are needed to improve performance.

Recruit higher-quality candidates:

Once the organization’s needs have been identified, the focus shifts to recruiting higher-quality candidates with the skills and experience needed to fill the gaps.

Back in 2020, in the thick of the pandemic, this was one of our most significant recommendations. We understand that it may feel counterintuitive to replace existing employees. However, it is a necessary process to ensure success and foster a high-performing team. Most importantly, it allows you to continue to work towards becoming a culture of choice where you can attract and retain the best possible talent regardless of the market circumstance. There are several reasons why we recommend talent upgrading:

Improves overall performance:

Hiring higher-quality candidates can improve the organization’s overall performance. This can lead to increased productivity, higher levels of customer satisfaction, and improved financial results.

Enhances innovation:

Higher-quality talent can bring new ideas, perspectives, and approaches to the organization, which can drive innovation and help the organization stay ahead of the competition.

Reduces turnover:

Hiring higher-quality talent can also help to reduce turnover, as these individuals are more likely to be engaged, motivated, and committed to the organization.

Increases organizational capacity:

When organizations hire higher-quality talent, they increase their capacity to achieve their goals. This can help the organization to grow, expand, and take on new challenges.

Enhances employer brand:

Hiring higher-quality talent can also enhance the organization’s employer brand. This can help attract more high-quality candidates in the future and improve the organization’s reputation in the industry.

Overall, talent upgrading is key in recruiting because it helps organizations build a strong, talented workforce that can drive their success. By investing in talent upgrading, organizations can improve their overall performance, enhance innovation, reduce turnover, increase organizational capacity, and enhance their employer brand.

4. Always Be Improving Communication

The job market is constantly evolving, and hiring processes have become much more efficient in recent years. The latest data released by ZipRecruiter, a leading online employment marketplace, is a key piece of evidence supporting this fact. According to their findings, an astounding 90% of job candidates receive a response from their prospective employer within 2 to 3 days of submitting their application, while applicants expect communication within 24 hours. This means that employers must have the ability to react quickly and efficiently.

This indicates a significant shift in the dynamics of hiring, with employers now needing to prioritize a swift and decisive approach to filling available positions. This rapid turnaround time is crucial for job seekers and employers, as it allows both parties to align their goals and expectations more effectively and strengthens the overall quality and satisfaction within the job market.

As such, employers should always strive to be improving their communication with job candidates. Here are our four top recommendations on how any business that is hiring can improve its communication with potential hires:

Utilize technology

The ever-evolving landscape of technology has opened up new avenues to simplify and enhance communication with job applicants throughout the hiring process. Adopting smart tools like applicant tracking systems (ATS) can significantly improve the efficiency of managing various modes of communication, including emails, texts, and calls. Automating these processes allows businesses to stay organized, save valuable time, and provide prospective candidates with a seamless, professional experience. This helps build a positive brand image and ensures that the company remains agile in capturing the best talent in today’s fast-paced job market.

Furthermore, implementing ATS empowers human resource professionals to focus on more strategic aspects while providing them the convenience of accessing key information about candidates with ease. By integrating technology into the hiring process, businesses can reinvent their approach to recruitment and communication, paving the way for a truly productive and successful work environment.

Personalize your communication

In the fast-paced world of job hunting, it’s easy for job seekers to feel like they are merely a number in an endless queue of applicants. To make your candidates feel valued and stand out from the competition, it’s essential to personalize your communication. By tailoring your messages, offering thoughtful feedback, and addressing their unique skills and experiences, you can significantly increase your response rate and foster a positive hiring experience. Moreover, building a meaningful connection with potential employees helps you assess their fit within your organization and paves the way for a successful and lasting professional relationship.

Follow up promptly

There is a vast difference between the talent you want and the talent you don’t want to work for your organization. The talent you do want is getting scooped up faster than you could ever imagine. A statistic from Indeed indicated that a highly qualified candidate will hear from a potential employer within 12 to 24 hours or less. The overarching message is to make sure you are responding to inquiries in a timely manner. This is important for job seekers and employers, as it allows parties to align their goals and expectations more effectively.

By not placing a high level of urgency on communication, a business inadvertently sends a negative message to potential candidates, signaling a lack of seriousness in the hiring process. This perception hinders a company’s ability to attract top talent and ultimately impacts the growth and performance of the organization. Therefore, timely and clear communication throughout the recruitment process inspires confidence in prospective employees and illustrates a company’s genuine commitment to building a strong and cohesive workforce. In essence, making communication, a priority reflects a business’s foresight and dedication to achieving long-term success.

Provide thoughtful feedback

The art of providing thoughtful feedback plays a crucial role in fostering a positive and constructive atmosphere during the hiring process. By engaging in open and honest communication, employers and job seekers alike can gain valuable insights into each other’s perspectives and requirements, promoting mutual understanding and trust. This exchange of information paves the way for clarifying and fine-tuning expectations, allowing both parties to align their goals and build a robust working relationship.

In addition, demonstrating a commitment to proactive feedback can enhance one’s reputation as a professional, fostering a culture of continuous improvement and growth that benefits the entire organization. In essence, thoughtful feedback catalyzes a transparent and efficient hiring process, ultimately paving the way for professional success and satisfaction for both the candidate and the employer.

Overall, to ensure a successful hiring process employers need to maintain open and consistent communication with job candidates. This means keeping them up-to-date on their application status, providing feedback on their qualifications and performance during interviews, and responding to any questions or concerns they may have throughout the process. Doing so helps to build trust and strengthens relationships between employers and job seekers, creating a desirable workplace where both parties can thrive.

What About a Recession?

We couldn’t write a 6,000-word article without talking about the “R” word. We are not currently in a recession, but the medium-term outlook is still cloudy in the next 12-18 months. While underlying inflation is high, and unless it comes down sufficiently to make the Federal Reserve happy, the Fed may tip the economy into recession. On the plus side, the resilience and robustness of the US labor market means the economy can absorb more Fed rate hikes than we previously thought; on the minus side, extra resilience and robustness may mean extra rate hikes! It might just take longer to get to low inflation, whether via recession or not.

The Twin Cities job market has seen its ups and downs over the past few years, but businesses can still find success in their hiring efforts by understanding the local trends and using proactive strategies for recruitment. Employers who take the time to invest in quality talent acquisition, embrace diversity and inclusion initiatives, understand technology advances, optimize communication practices, and plan for long-term success will come out ahead.

The challenge is to be proactive in the face of a changing economic landscape and focus on creating an environment that attracts and retains top talent. With the right combination of planning, strategy, and communication; businesses can make the most of their recruitment efforts and build successful teams for years to come.

Award Staffing can help your business create a competitive advantage in the Twin Cities job market by taking proactive steps to ensure they have access to top talent. Investing in quality talent acquisition, embracing diversity and inclusion initiatives, understanding technology advances, optimizing communication practices, and planning for long-term success are all essential components of we can aid to help you create a successful hiring strategy. Contact Award Staffing today, and let us help you find the right people to meet your business needs.

Astounding Differences From CNC Operators to CNC Machinists: 3 Ways to Improve Recruiting Tactics

CNC Operators and CNC Machinists are two distinct roles in the skilled manufacturing industry, each requiring their own set of skills and experience. CNC Operators have a basic understanding of CNC machine operations, while CNC Machinists possess a degree of knowledge and experience with CNC programming.

Having a clear understanding of these roles can save your business from costly mistakes and help ensure quality products are produced efficiently. We’ll also cover some recruiting strategies to entice these professionals to your organization. Employers need to recruit the right individuals with the desired skill sets or experience in order to support long-term growth.

In this blog post we will explain exactly what sets apart a CNC Operator from a CNC machinist so you can make smart decisions when recruiting individuals for either role.

1. CNC Operators

Among the multitude of roles within the manufacturing industry, CNC Machine Operators hold a crucial position that directly impacts the overall efficiency and productivity of the operation. Tasked with managing highly sophisticated and automated machinery, these professionals are responsible for ensuring that the equipment is running smoothly and performing at an optimum level. Their expertise in operating, maintaining, and troubleshooting machinery becomes the defining factor in maintaining the quality of the products being manufactured.

A CNC Machine Operator is a skilled technician responsible for operating CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machines. They are responsible for loading raw materials into the CNC machine, performing maintenance and cleaning on the equipment, running machines and troubleshooting any mechanical issues that arise during operation. CNC Machine Operators must be able to read blueprints and part drawings, as well as set up and operate machine tools such as drilling, milling, and grinding.

The ideal CNC Operator candidate should have a minimum of 6 months to 2 years of experience in operating CNC machines. This is often a skilled position with room to advance to a CNC Machinist role. They should be highly skilled, demonstrate mechanical aptitude, and have strong mathematic skills. The best candidate for this position has exposure, and passion for growth.

2. CNC Machinist 2

The CNC Machinist holds a vital role in the manufacturing industry, as their expertise and skills are key to producing high-quality, accurate products. These Machinists shoulder the responsibility of programming, setting up, and operating CNC machines with precision and efficiency. To ensure parts meet specifications, they read and interpret complex blueprints, engineering drawings, and work instructions. By continuously honing their skills and staying current on industry trends, CNC Machinists play a significant role in shaping the future of modern manufacturing.

The CNC Machinists 2 is a step up from the CNC Machine Operators, requiring more knowledge and experience in loading and testing the program as well as Setups. They possess a strong understanding of CNC programming, machine setup, tool selection, and quality control processes. It should be noted that CNC Machinist 2’s are not writing the G-code programming but should know enough to select the correct pre-loaded programs. A successful CNC Machinist should have at least 2 to 4 years of experience in CNC Machine programming, Setup, and G-code programs.

Recruiting the CNC Machinist 2 with the right skill set is essential to your team’s success and efficiency. This individual should possess strong leadership and effective management skills as they may be required to supervise CNC Operators. CNC Machinists 2’s must also have excellent problem-solving, communication, and mathematic skills, as they will be responsible for troubleshooting CNC programming issues.

3. CNC Machinist 3

Generally, a Machinist’s job requires them to fabricate, modify, or repair mechanical objects. Therefore, they must have a strong knowledge of mechanics, mathematics, metallic properties, and machining. The CNC Machinist 3 is the most highly skilled position and requires mastery of writing the program and setup. This person is the one who takes a blueprint and figures out how to make the part. This involves picking out tools, determining the speeds and fees, and programming CNC Machines in G-Code Programming. Essentially, they are responsible for building the software and selecting the tools to make precision parts. A minimum of 4 years of experience is generally required for this role.

This individual is experienced and knowledgeable in tool making and die maintenance with CNC operation and CNC programming. The CNC Machinist 3 also takes on leadership responsibilities such as supervising and managing CNC Operators.

4. Recruiting for CNC Personnel

Successfully recruiting CNC Operators and Machinists requires an expert understanding of the unique skills and qualifications these professionals possess. To start, it’s essential to develop a detailed and accurate job description that highlights key responsibilities and requirements such as certifications, experience, and technical proficiency. But that’s just the basics. There is much more to developing a successful recruiting strategy:

1. Develop an Attractive Environment

The key to attracting and retaining quality candidates is not just a competitive salary, but rather creating a workplace that employees actively choose to be a part of. Establishing such an environment requires a conscious effort to build an atmosphere that prioritizes respect, recognition, and connection with the company’s mission. Doing so will foster loyalty, leading to increased productivity and a greater sense of job satisfaction that keeps employees happy and engaged. By doing so candidates of the highest caliber are more likely to be attracted to your organization over others.

2. Prioritize Candidate Engagement

Once you’ve attracted potential candidates, it’s crucial to implement an engagement strategy. 24hr response time is a must to keep candidates engaged. Research conducted by SHRM suggests that companies who respond to job applications within 24 hours are 12x more likely to engage with candidates who they consider to be the most qualified. Additionally, job seekers are 3x more likely to respond when they receive a prompt follow-up. As such, employers need to demonstrate that they value each candidate’s time and effort.

3. Invest in Training

Finally, employers should consider offering training and continuing education opportunities to CNC personnel as they are key components in showing support for their team’s long-term growth and career goals. This will enable the organization to build a highly capable workforce who have the necessary skill set to achieve greater efficiency and productivity.

Therefore, recruiting the right individual with the necessary skills and experience for your team is essential to success. Carefully reviewing job descriptions, establishing a desirable atmosphere, and providing effective training opportunities are all key components to attracting and retaining CNC professionals. When carefully crafted, these recruitment strategies will ensure the formation of a skilled and productive team of CNC professionals.


In summary, CNC Operators and CNC Machinists both perform important duties responsible for the production of high-precision parts. The Operator largely focuses on setting up and controlling specific processes. On the other hand, the Machinist requires a higher level of skill and specialization in areas such as G-code Programming and operations management. Recruitment efforts should focus on a professional well-versed in industry trends and technologies as well as able to demonstrate solid decision-making skills. Finally, staying current with safety protocols is essential for keeping these highly technical staff members safe as they work with expensive machinery. This illustrates why understanding the difference between these two roles is so important for ensuring your business runs efficiently.

If you are looking for help recruiting CNC professionals, contact our team or check out our services. We will gladly help you find the right individual, or help you decide on the right role for your needs.

3 Key Ways to Prioritize Employee Wellness

As staffing professionals, we recognize that employee wellness is an important concept for us to recognize and invest in. It involves more than just sick days but rather caring for our employees on a level that encourages continual growth and improvement throughout the company. By investing in employee wellness, we become united as a team, fostering a culture of appreciation and inclusion. Showing that employee well-being matters helps us succeed as a whole.

Fortunately, there are three simple methods to value your staff and ensure their health and well-being. This includes creating a wellness program, developing wellness breaks, and offering health benefits. By implementing these interties, you can reduce turnover rates, improve morale and engagement, and even save costs when done correctly. Studies have shown that initiatives that focus on employees’ physical and mental health can lead to a major boost in their success. The advantages of incorporating wellness plans into regular office practice are obvious; not only does it help retain optimal performance from staff members, but it’s also proven to increase their engagement in company operations, resulting in greater efficiency across the board. We have found that investing in your employees’ well-being is truly an investment in your business’s overall future success.

Here are our 3 top ways to prioritize employee wellness:

1. Create a Wellness Program

Creating a wellness program can help build a strong, healthy culture within your organization. By addressing the physical, mental, and emotional health of your employees, you can increase workplace engagement and productivity. Begin by assessing the needs of your specific workforce so that you can tailor and customize the program to suit them. Put measures in place to evaluate employee satisfaction with the wellness initiatives regularly and make adjustments where necessary. Ultimately, creating a successful wellness program encourages healthier decisions among staff members and helps create a sustainable, productive working environment.

A comprehensive wellness program should provide employees with resources to assist in maintaining their physical and mental health. This could include offering preventive health measures such as on-site health screenings or making recommendations for healthy lifestyle habits. Offering balanced nutrition counseling can be valuable, as well as discounts at fitness centers or access to fitness classes provided by the company. Additionally, subsidizing a mental health benefit may be worthwhile if you wish your staff to be able to seek out counseling at any time. The goal of any employer is to ensure that their workforce remains strong and confident when facing the challenges of the modern professional landscape.

2. Implement Wellness Breaks

In today’s fast-paced work environment, employee health and wellness have become an increasingly important issue for employers. Employee mental health is particularly vulnerable to the stress of long hours and tight deadlines, so business professionals must prioritize employee health in their organization.

One key way to do this is by offering employees regular wellness breaks throughout the day. Wellness breaks can help promote employee mental health by allowing them to step away and gain perspective while also relieving stress levels. For example, employers can offer group puzzle activities such as crosswords, Sudoku, or jigsaw puzzles for employees to work on together. Not only do these activities help employees take their mind off of work-related stress, but they also provide an opportunity to test analytical and problem-solving skills away from work activities.

Studies have shown that employee wellness breaks increase employee productivity levels by up to 32%. Employee engagement levels also increased after taking wellness breaks, with a reported 21% improvement in employee focus and concentration. Furthermore, employee satisfaction levels were found to increase by 16% after taking regular breaks throughout the day. These findings demonstrate how employee wellness breaks can have a positive effect on employee health as well as the overall bottom line of an organization.

3. Offer Comprehensive Health Benefits

Comprehensive employee health benefits are essential to maintain employee retention. An effective employee benefits package can include paid time off, holiday pay, and health insurance coverage which all help to attract top talent to the company. However, the most important benefit of all is providing an Employee Assistance Program, which offers employees support in a range of stressful situations. This could include helping employees to find childcare, providing assistance during times of grief, offering legal options and advice, as well as managing stress. Offering comprehensive health benefits demonstrates that you are invested in the long-term well-being of your employees and will go out of your way to ensure their continued success.

Offering these health benefits to employees also sets your business apart from the competition in several ways. Most significantly, it demonstrates your commitment to valuing their wellbeing, which is a quality that job seekers are increasingly looking for when considering potential employers. Furthermore, the range of benefits offered can provide valuable assistance with everyday life and its associated challenges, as well as offer proactive support to manage stress and mental health.

Don’t forget to also communicate the benefits of your program clearly to potential and current employees. Making sure everyone is aware of the wide range of benefits you offer can go a long way in helping them feel valued. By investing in employee health, you are setting up your team for success and establishing a strong, supportive culture.

With the right mix of benefits, you can provide your employees with job satisfaction, improved overall health and wellness, and elevated longevity. Invest today and see how it can benefit your business in the future.

Why Employee Wellness is Good for Business

Ultimately, establishing and maintaining effective employee wellness initiatives is essential for businesses to stay competitive and create a high-performing work culture. When employees are supported and encouraged to take care of their physical, emotional, and mental health, it leads to increased engagement, morale, and productivity. Put simply, when employers invest in their people’s well-being, the benefits spread throughout the entire organization. From improved communication to enhanced energy levels, investing in employee wellness can yield financial returns in the form of savings related to absenteeism and retention.

Start developing these initiatives today – your team will thank you later. And if you’re looking for a purpose driven team that has made employee well-being a priority – view our services to see how we can help.

6 Reasons Why Buiding Strong Partnerships Matters for Mutal Business Success

Building strong partnerships is essential for any business to be successful. By forming relationships based on trust and mutual understanding, businesses can create a platform of collaboration that will fuel innovation and growth. Communication is key when it comes to developing these partnerships, as both parties must work together in order to identify what works best for both sides.

To this, Bob our Northwest Account manager advices, “Trust the system. We will help find the right candidates but we can’t guarantee that the first one will be the right fit. We need to partner together and feel out what works for both of us.”

In this blog, we’ll look at how trust and communication are the building blocks of successful business partnerships.

Here are 6 reasons why strong partnerships matter for mutual business success:

1. Increased Efficiency

Partnering with another business can be a great way to increase your efficiency and productivity. When two parties work together as partners, they can create an efficient workflow that ensures both sides are achieving their goals. By collaborating on tasks, each party can maximize the potential of their respective businesses while also reducing any inefficiencies or redundancies within the process.

To build a prosperous collaboration, both organizations must be eager to deploy their unique strengths. Each side needs to communicate and understand the value they can bring to the table. This can include offerings such as access to resources, specialized skillsets, or expertise in certain areas that could benefit both sides.

Trust and communication between partners are essential elements for successful partnerships. Without them, it’s impossible to build a strong relationship that will last over time. Working together as partners helps to identify what works best for both parties and ensure that everyone is on the same page when it comes to expectations and results.

2. Shared Resources

Building a strong partnership can also give you access to resources and tools that are not necessarily available in-house. Working with a partner can give you access to an expanded network of contacts and resources that could be beneficial for both parties. For example, if you need a particular software that your partner has access to, you can use their resources for a discounted rate or even free of charge. This can be a great way to save money and get the most out of your investments.

In addition, having access to shared resources allows both partners to work efficiently on projects that require multiple skillsets or expertise. By leveraging each other’s strengths, you can ensure that the project will be completed successfully with everyone pulling their weight.

3. Shared Knowledge

When forming a partnership, both sides can share their knowledge and expertise. This helps to create a more holistic approach to problem-solving and decision making, resulting in better solutions that are tailored to the specific needs of each company.

Shared knowledge means that both parties are able to bring their expertise and experience into play when making decisions or solving problems. This allows them to come up with creative solutions that neither could have thought of alone. By sharing information openly and honestly between both sides, they are also able to learn from each other’s mistakes and successes.

Communication is key when it comes to building successful business partnerships because it ensures that all relevant information is being shared among all parties involved so everyone has access to the same data points before making decisions or taking action on anything related to their partnership agreement.

4. Improved Relationships

Partnerships can be the lifeblood of any successful business, as the strength of their relationships will often determine the ultimate success of their organization. By working together to create strong, trusting bonds, it is possible to unlock avenues for achievement that would have been impossible without such collaborations. Achieving a shared vision through strategic partnerships allows businesses to access resources, expertise, and ideas that they may not have had access to on their own. Through effective collaboration, businesses can expand their reach, secure new opportunities and increase profits. Working together in a mutually beneficial way ensures that all parties involved benefit from the relationship and creates a framework for long-term success.

5. Increased Opportunities

Companies are able to explore new opportunities and expand their reach by developing partnerships built on trust and mutual understanding. Partners who share the same vision and goals can open up a range of possibilities that may not have been available to them otherwise.

This could involve expanding into new markets, or access to wider resources such as production processes and distribution networks. Strong partnerships also forge new avenues for growth and development – such as marketing campaigns, product launches or access to new technologies.

By combining their knowledge, skills and resources effectively, both parties can expand their influence within their respective industry. With the right partnership, companies can open up a world of possibilities and take advantage of every opportunity available to them.

6. Positive Reputation

Establishing successful partnerships will be beneficial for improving your company’s reputation. Companies that are seen as trusted partners by their peers and customers will often have an edge in the competitive business world. Partnerships also create a platform for customer loyalty which can help to increase future business opportunities. Having a good reputation within your industry can also make it easier for you to attract potential investors and other partners.

It is important to maintain honesty and transparency throughout the entire partnership process. Take steps to ensure that both parties are always in agreement and that communication lines remain open at all times. Making sure both parties understand what is expected of them and are committed to working together collaboratively is essential for building trust and a positive reputation. By doing so, you will help create lasting partnerships that foster growth and success.


Business partnerships are key to achieving success in many industries. By building trust and establishing mutual understanding, you create a solid foundation for your partnership. This leads to increased efficiency, shared resources, shared knowledge, improved relationships, increased opportunities and a positive reputation. If you’re looking for a true industry partner to assist in your hunt for new talent, be sure to check out our services.

The Importance of Meaningful Work: A guide to creating an engaging culture that ensures employee longevity and satisfaction

There are a wide variety of aspects that make for a good job. Of course, fair pay, good benefits, a supportive boss, and great coworkers are important. But nowadays, with so many companies offering those things, they’re no longer the only things that matter. What employees are really looking for is meaning in their work.

A study by the Harvard Business Review found that 50% of workers would take a pay cut to do work that’s more meaningful. And another study found that employees who find meaning in their work are more than three times as likely to stay with their current employer.

In today’s work world, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of deadlines and meetings and lose sight of what’s truly important. We often forget that we are working to make a difference in the world, and our jobs should reflect that. However, meaning is one of those things that is hard to define but, once discovered, has far-reaching benefits.

Therefore, discovering meaning is important. It gives us a reason to get out of bed in the morning and face the day. It makes us excited and energized, and as a result, we are more productive at work. We feel like we are part of something bigger than ourselves and that our lives have a purpose. According to one study by the Gallup organization, when we have a sense of meaning in our lives, we’re more resilient in the face of adversity. We’re more likely to bounce back from setbacks because we know our lives have a greater purpose.

Creating a work culture that is focused on meaningfulness is essential to keeping employees engaged and motivated. When people feel like their work is purposeful, they are more likely to be productive and innovative.

What is Meaningful Work and Its Importance

The majority of Americans spend the majority of their waking hours at work. And while some people love their jobs and find them deeply fulfilling, others see their work as a necessary evil. They wake up every day, go to a job they hate, and then come home to collapse in front of the TV. But it doesn’t have to be this way! But regardless of how you feel about your job, one thing is certain: how you spend your time at work can profoundly impact the meaning and purpose you feel in your life.

So, what is meaningful work?

Meaningful work—a job that isn’t just about paying the bills, but is connected to purpose, that makes you feel fulfilled and valuable.

As we have all experienced, work can be a source of great meaning and fulfillment, or it can be a major source of stress and anxiety. It all depends on how you approach it. If you see your work as a way to make a difference in the world and use your unique talents to contribute to something larger than yourself, you are more likely to find it fulfilling. On the other hand, if you see your job as a way to pay the bills and nothing more, you are likely to find it unfulfilling. And this can lead to all sorts of problems, both at work and in your personal life. According to one study, people who don’t find meaning in their work are more likely to experience anxiety, depression, and other mental health problems.

It’s not surprising, then, that more and more people are searching for jobs that offer a sense of purpose. A study by Deloitte found that 78% of millennials (people aged 18-34) want their work to have a positive impact on society. And another study by the IBM Institute for Business Value found that 86% of employees would leave their job for one that offered them a sense of purpose.

So, what can you do to create a work culture that is focused on meaningfulness?

In a recent paper in the Review of General Psychology, psychologists Login George and Crystal Park from the University of Connecticut identified the 3 most commonly referenced pillars of a meaningful career:

1. Purpose:

How much does an employee feel directly motivated by life goals that they value?

2. Engagement:

How able are you to understand and make sense of your life experiences and weave them into a coherent whole? In other words, how easy is it for you to see your own life story?

3. Social Impact:

How much does an employee believe that their work is significant and valued?

These pillars were found to directly predict job satisfaction and overall well-being. Of the three, Purpose was found to be the strongest predictor of satisfaction, followed by Engagement and then Social Impact. The authors suggest that finding a career that is purposeful, engaging, and has a positive social impact is key to achieving a sense of meaning in one’s work.

The Deception of High Pay Hiring Strategy

In today’s labor market, many Twin Cities companies use the promise of high pay to lure in new employees. They advertise starting salaries much higher than the industry average, hoping to attract talented workers looking for a raise. However, we’ve seen this strategy often backfire.

A new study has shown that offering high salaries to people who are already employed is not an effective hiring strategy. The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Toronto, found that people who are offered high salaries are no more likely to accept a job than those who are offered lower salaries. The findings challenge the common belief that high salaries are the best way to attract top talent. The study’s authors say that companies should focus on other factors, such as company culture and work-life balance when attracting new employees.

The above study’s findings add to the growing evidence that challenges the wisdom of using high salaries to lure workers, which can cause a multitude of issues, including:

Increased internal resentment:

It can create tension and resentment among existing employees who are not being paid as much. This can lead to decreased morale and motivation and a higher turnover rate. This was most apparent with The Great Resignation of middle managers, office staff, and skilled-trades personnel leaving their jobs due to feeling underpaid because their organizations were offering higher salaries to new hires in order to attract top talent.

While it’s important to attract top talent, businesses need to be mindful of the impact that unequal pay can have on their existing workforce.

Creating a “bid up” mentality:

It’s no secret that salaries have been on the rise in recent years. In fact, according to a recent study we performed, salaries have increased by 18% to 21% over the last two years. This is good news for employees but is having a negative impact on companies because they are unable to keep up with the high salaries being offered.

As a result, this can create unrealistic expectations among employees. For example, if an employee sees that their salary has increased by 21%, they may expect a raise or bonus that the company is unable to provide, which is leading to greater turnover as employees become dissatisfied with their compensation.

In order to avoid this, companies need to be transparent with their employees about their compensation philosophy and how they plan to keep up with the rising cost of living.

A loss of organizational focus

While it is important to attract top talent with competitive pay in the race to find employees, we have seen many companies lose sight of their core values and mission, which allow for greater retention of their current employees.

Organizations that focus on their mission and values are able to create a stronger sense of purpose for their employees. When people feel part of something larger than themselves, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated to do their best work.

We have seen firsthand how companies that focus on their mission and values are able to create a more engaged workforce. For example, our company’s core values of “people first, mission always” have helped us create a culture where our employees feel like they are part of something larger than themselves. This has led to higher employee engagement and retention rates without having to pay top dollar to stay relevant in the hunt for talent.

What does this all mean for your organization?

Don’t be fooled by the lure of drastically increasing pay rates to drive candidate flow for your open positions. In fact, according to a recent Gallup poll, it takes more than a 20% pay raise to lure most employees away from a job where they feel engaged, and unsurprisingly next to nothing to poach most disengaged workers.

Instead, focus on creating a work culture that is meaningful and engaging for your employees. This will not only lead to greater employee satisfaction and retention but will also be more attractive to potential candidates. And, as an added bonus, it will save you a lot of money in the long run with hiring.

Characteristics of Meaningfulness in Work

One of these most, if not the most common decision that we hear as to why people are looking for work is for better pay. While candidates will tell you that pay is the sole reason, it is not the case. All pay does is get someone engaged with your opportunity.

And while a stable and livable wage is important, it is not the only factor that contributes to meaningful work; actually, it is one of the last items when it comes to finding meaning in our work.

A study by the University of Michigan found that people who placed high importance on salary were less likely to find their work meaningful. The authors suggest that “the quest for ever-higher salaries may crowd out opportunities to experience the more profound benefits that work can offer.”

So, what are some of the other characteristics of meaningful work?

Holistically, meaningfulness in work is an elusive concept, and articulating what are the finite characteristics that make work meaningful is difficult. However, a 2020 study by the Brookings Institute conducted a 10-year study that found 12-factors that make individuals more likely to experience work meaningfulness. These characteristics from most critical to least are:

  1. Relatedness: the feeling of social connection to others in the workplace.
  2. Autonomy: the feeling of control and independence in one’s work.
  3. Location: the physical work environment.
  4. Career Advancement: the opportunity for growth and development in one’s career.
  5. Industry: the sector or industry in which an individual works.
  6. Competence: the feeling of being good at what one does.
  7. Job Insecurity: the feeling of job stability.
  8. Occupation: the specific job or role an individual has.
  9. Hours Worked: the number of hours worked per week.
  10. Year of Interview: the year in which the individual was interviewed for the study.
  11. Income: the financial compensation for the work being done.
  12. Benefits and Performance Pay: the feeling of being rewarded for good work.

Brookings’ analysis shows that relatedness, which is about relationships at work, is the most important determinant of work meaningfulness. The study found that “people who feel a strong sense of relatedness to others at work are 2.5 times more likely to find their work meaningful than those who do not.” Diving deeper into this, workers desire to feel related if they experience genuine care from their bosses or colleagues and care about their superiors and coworkers in return.

In general, Brookings discovered that relatedness, autonomy, and competence are almost five times more important for perceptions of having meaningful work compared with compensation, benefits, career advancement, job insecurity, and working hours (Figure 1).

Again, despite what job seekers may articulate, work is more than a paycheck; it is a critical aspect of the human experience, providing identity and individual self-esteem. Since most adults spend half of their waking hours in a work environment, it is essential to make sure that the work environment is one that is conducive to finding meaning.

As business leaders, it is vital to understand what factors make work a life-enriching and dignifying experience so organizations can help design policies to enhance workers’ well-being and boost organizational performance.

Creating a Culture of Meaningful Work

As the world of work continues to evolve, it’s more important than ever to create a culture of meaningful work. Employees who feel their work is purposeful and valuable are more engaged, productive, and satisfied with their jobs.

So how can you create a culture of meaningful work in your organization?

Not every company is going to produce life-saving medical devices where the lineage to meaningfulness is explicit. However, every company can operationalize meaning by doing the following:

Work that’s engaging

In order to have a sense of meaningfulness at work, individuals need to feel like their work is valuable and has a purpose. This means that employees should be engaged in their work, not just going through the motions to complete tasks. One way to achieve this is by giving employees opportunities to work on projects that interest them and using their skills to make a difference.

Work that helps others

People often find the most meaning in their work when it helps others. This could be as simple as being part of a team or working on a project together. Or it could be something more significant, like developing a new product or making a sale. Whatever the task, employees should feel like they are contributing to something larger than themselves. When people feel like their work has a purpose, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated. And when they are able to see the impact of their work on others, it can be even more fulfilling.

Work employees are good at

When people feel like they are good at their jobs, they are more likely to find meaning in their work. This is because they feel competent and valuable, which are two important factors in job satisfaction. Employees should feel like they have the opportunity to use their skills and abilities to make a difference. When they feel like their work is a waste of their talents, they are less likely to be engaged or motivated.

Work with supportive colleagues

Employees should also feel like they are part of a community at work. This means creating an environment where people feel comfortable collaborating and working together. One way to do this is by promoting team-building activities and encouraging employees to get to know each other on a personal level.

It’s also important to create an environment where people feel supported by their colleagues. This means having open lines of communication and providing opportunities for employees to give and receive feedback. Additionally, managers should be accessible and approachable, so employees feel comfortable coming to them with concerns or ideas.

Lack of major negatives in the work environment

Of course, no job is perfect. But employees should feel like the negatives are outweighed by the positives. This means having a fair and flexible work schedule, reasonable workloads, and a healthy work-life balance. It also means providing employees with the resources and support they need to do their jobs well. When employees feel stressed or overworked, they are less likely to find meaning in their work.

Work that fits with the rest of your employee’s lives

Finally, it’s important to remember that employees have lives outside of work. Their work should fit into their lives, not the other way around. When employees feel like their work is a priority, they are more likely to find it meaningful. On the other hand, when they feel like their work is taking over their lives, they are less likely to be engaged or satisfied.

Creating a meaningful work culture is essential to the success of any organization. It is the foundation upon which all other aspects of the business are built. A meaningful work culture is one that values employee contributions, offers opportunities for professional development, and provides a sense of purpose. It is a place where people feel motivated to do their best work and are proud to be part of the team. Creating such a culture requires commitment and effort, but it is well worth the investment.

When employees feel valued and engaged in their work, they are more productive, creative, and loyal. They are also more likely to stay with the company, reducing turnover costs and increasing morale. A culture of meaningful work is the key to unlocking the full potential of your workforce. With it, you can create an organization that is not only successful but also fulfilling for all who are involved.

Hiring for Meaningful Work

The most essential aspect of creating a meaningful work culture is hiring the right people. The right person should not only fit within your organization’s mission and goals, but actively enhance it. This is essential to creating a cohesive and productive environment where everyone finds a sense of purpose and belonging.

Every organization is different, so it’s important to tailor your hiring process to fit your specific needs.

However, there are five general principles that you should keep in mind when searching for meaning-minded employees:

1. Hire for passion

First, look for people who are passionate about their work. This doesn’t necessarily mean that they have to love your company or product, but they should be excited about the role they would be playing in the organization. They should also be enthusiastic about the prospect of learning and growing in their career.

When you’re interviewing candidates, ask some of these questions:

  • What attributes do you look for in a company when you want to apply for a position?
  • What does your ideal role look like? Elaborate on the type of environment in which you would function with enthusiasm and contribute positively to our team.
  • Why did you choose your current field of work?
  • What are some of the things you’ve learned in your career so far?

Pay attention to how they talk about their work. Do they seem excited and passionate about what they do? Or do they seem bored and uninterested? Look for candidates who have a passion for what they do and who are excited about the opportunity to make a difference.

2. Hire for purpose and values

Second, look for people who are committed to making a difference. This means they should be interested in more than just a paycheck. They should want to use their skills and talents to make a positive impact on the world.

When you’re interviewing candidates, ask some of these questions:

  • What motivates you to do your best work?
  • What are some of the things that are important to you in a job?
  • What did you find most fulfilling about your previous work?
  • What is your purpose?

When hiring new employees, make sure to look for candidates who share the same values as your organization. This will help ensure that they are more likely to find purpose in their work.

3. Hire for potential

This means looking for people who have the ability to grow and develop in their careers. They should be proactive and always look for ways to improve their skills. They should also be open to new challenges and willing to take risks.

When you’re interviewing candidates, ask some of these questions:

  • What are some of your long-term career goals?
  • How have you grown in your current role?
  • What has been your favorite mistake?
  • Describe a challenging situation you have faced recently at work and how you tackled it.

Make sure to look for candidates who have the potential to grow and develop in their careers. This will help ensure that they are able to adapt and change as the needs of your organization change.

4. Hire team players

The goal of hiring the right people to create a meaningful culture is to enhance it, not fix it. This means that you should look for team players who are willing to work together to achieve common goals. They should also be respectful of others and able to handle constructive criticism.

When you’re interviewing candidates, ask some of these questions:

  • What are your thoughts on teamwork?
  • How do you handle conflict with co-workers?
  • What are some of the things you like and don’t like about working in a team environment?

Therefore hiring team players is essential to creating a meaningful work culture. The ability to work towards a common goal as a team is important to creating a productive and cohesive environment. This means employees will be happier which ensures their longevity.

5. Hire for diversity

Last but not least, look for people who are diverse in their backgrounds and perspectives. This will help ensure that your company culture is inclusive and that everyone feels like they belong.

When you’re interviewing candidates, ask some of these questions:

  • What are some of the challenges you have faced when working with people from different backgrounds?
  • How do you create an inclusive environment in your workplace?
  • What are some of the things you have learned from people who are different from you?

When hiring for diversity, keep in mind to look for employees who can bring different backgrounds and perspectives to the table. Understanding different cultures can also benefit your business in the long run, as you will be better able to cater to a global audience.

Creating a work culture that focuses on meaningfulness is essential to keeping employees engaged and motivated. When people feel like their work is purposeful, they are more likely to be productive and innovative. The best way to create a work culture that is focused on meaning is to hire the right people. Look for candidates who are passionate about their work, have the potential to grow and develop in their careers, are team players, and are diverse in their backgrounds and perspectives. This will help ensure that your company culture is one that is focused on meaningfulness and that everyone feels like they belong.

The Long-Term Benefits of Meaningful Work

We are operating in a talent-driven environment, which means that the war for top talent is only going to get more heated in the years to come. So, in order to attract and retain the best employees, organizations need to focus on creating a work culture that is focused on meaningfulness. When people feel like their work is purposeful, they are more likely to be productive and innovative.

There are a number of long-term benefits that organizations can enjoy by creating a work culture that focuses on meaningfulness. In a study conducted by the Harvard Business Review of workers across five generations, researchers discovered that there were 3 statements that were regularly used by all groups to describe the lasting impact of meaningful work:

Meaningful work is intrinsically motivated:

Intrinsic motivation is a powerful engine of success. It’s what drives people to do their best work, even when no one is watching, and there’s no external reward. Simply put, it’s the desire to do something because it’s personally meaningful, not because of any external pressure. Of course, not all work is intrinsically motivated.

Most jobs involve at least some tasks that are drudgery, and it’s unrealistic to expect that every aspect of our work life will be perfectly aligned with our personal values. However, research has shown that when people have a greater sense of control over their work and feel that it is meaningful, they are more engaged and productive.

Intrinsically motivated workers are often more creative and proactive, and they are more likely to stick with a task even when it becomes challenging.

Meaningful work creates lasting relationships:

Most people spend the majority of their waking hours at work. So, it stands to reason that our jobs have a big impact on our lives. As we discussed earlier in regard to research conducted by the Brookings Institute, one of the most important factors in job satisfaction is whether or not we feel connected with coworkers.

The most successful relationships are built on a foundation of trust and respect. And while there are many ways to build trust and respect, one of the most effective is through meaningful work. When we work together on something that is important to us, we naturally come to rely on and appreciate one another. We learn about each other’s strengths and weaknesses, and we develop a deeper understanding of one another’s perspectives. As we work together towards a common goal, we create stronger bonds. These relationships are built on trust, respect, and a shared commitment to making a difference.

Meaningful work helps others:

One of the most rewarding aspects of meaningful work is that it helps others. When we feel like our work is making a difference in the lives of others, it can be a powerful motivator. It can also help us to feel more connected to the world around us.

In a study of over 2,000 employees, those who felt their work was positively impacting society were more engaged and productive than those who didn’t. They also reported higher levels of satisfaction with their jobs.

Meaningful work can also have a ripple effect, positively impacting the lives of those we work with and those we serve. When we feel like our work is making a difference, we are more likely to be motivated and innovative. We are also more likely to stick with it, even when times are tough. And as we discussed earlier, this can lead to lasting relationships.

Partnering With Us Creates Meaningful Work

Creating a work culture that is focused on meaningfulness is essential to keeping employees engaged and motivated. When people feel like their work is purposeful, they are more likely to be productive and innovative. The best way to create a work culture that is focused on meaning is to hire the right people. Look for individuals who are passionate about what they do and who have a strong desire to make a difference. Then, give them the autonomy and resources they need to be successful. With the right people in place, you can create an environment that is focused on meaningful work and that leads to lasting relationships, increased productivity, and overall satisfaction.

In today’s competitive job market, it can be difficult to find the right employees. But, with the right staffing strategy, it’s possible to create a work culture that is focused on meaningful work. It’s because of this that we at Award Staffing have a Core Focus of “Connecting People Through Meaningful Work.” We take the time to get to know each of our employees and what they are passionate about. We also work with our clients to ensure that we are placing our employees in positions where they can do the most good. We believe that when people are doing work that is meaningful to them, they are more likely to be productive and engaged. And we believe that this leads to lasting relationships, increased productivity, and overall satisfaction.

If you are interested in creating a work culture that is focused on meaningful work, we would love to help. Contact us today to learn more about our staffing services and how we can help you build an engaged and productive workforce.

8 Astounding Ways to Spark Friendly Accountability in Your Workplace Culture

Yes, company performance is a strong indicator of their success, but company culture is what makes a company great.

Creating a strong team culture is essential for the success of any organization. It’s not just about performance and productivity, but rather creating an environment where team members can collaborate, support each other, and take pride in their work. A team culture built on accountability is key to reaching team goals and staying motivated throughout the process.

Our Southeast Account Manager, Brandon Fernandez advises, “Friendly accountability is when employees take responsibility for both their performance and business outcomes instead of playing the “blame game” when something goes wrong. Companies that hold employees accountable are outcome-focused. They meet their goals, experience higher employee engagement, and continually grow.”

While team leadership is certainly important for setting team goals, fostering team accountability involves everyone in the organization. Every team member has a responsibility to their team and each other to stay on track and make sure that the team stays focused on their objectives. It’s important to understand that team success is also individual success — when one team member succeeds, the team succeeds.

Here are 8 ways to create a culture of friendly accountability in your workplace.

1. Establish Clear Team Goals

The foundation of team accountability is rooted in the team’s agreed-upon goals. Establishing clear team goals allows team members to have a common understanding of the team’s purpose and objectives. This understanding helps define roles and responsibilities within the team, as well as establishes a sense of ownership for each team member. Team goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound (SMART) and should also include short-term milestones to keep team members motivated and on track.

Establishing clear team goals provides an essential layer of transparency in any organization. It helps to develop a team mindset and encourages team members to work together towards a common purpose. This also communicates a clear future plan, which informs employees of the direction the company is headed. Developing team goals provides steps on how to achieve those future plans. This ensures that long-term goals are successfully accomplished.

The team leader should then involve all team members in creating the plan, ensuring that their interests are considered too. Team cohesion is achieved when every team member is involved in setting tasks and developing strategies to complete them. This can also create an environment where collaboration between different departments is encouraged — leading to increased success.

2. Set Reasonable Team Expectations

Setting reasonable expectations encourages friendly accountability within your team. Rather than expecting perfection from yourself or your team members, it’s important to take a step back and evaluate if your team’s goals are in line with what is both achievable and fair. This mindset also helps encourage open dialogue, allowing feedback to be given safely and effectively without fear of judgment or retribution. This also encourages interdepartmental communication and collaboration when assistance is needed. Establishing clear boundaries and expectations upfront allows everyone involved in the process to better understand their roles within the task at hand, creating an atmosphere of accountability that fosters trust and collaboration.

On the other hand, unattainable goals and expectations can create unnecessary pressure, leading to a decline in work quality. Pushing team members too hard to reach these lofty objectives can be counter-productive and lead to burnout. This can ultimately affect the quality of the work produced; when working excessively long hours with unrealistic goals, mistakes are more likely to occur. Being realistic about what they can achieve will help reduce stress levels, allowing for a healthier and more productive environment where goals are attainable yet still challenging enough to push everyone forward.

3. Lead by Example

Leading by example and taking responsibility for actions are the most effective ways to encourage accountability in the workforce. Leaders have the power to set a strong example of excellence, which can motivate their team and encourage accountability. By demonstrating a commitment to personal and team success, leaders can show their teams that everyone’s individual work matters. Additionally, by giving constructive feedback and promoting open communication, leaders can further foster a culture of friendly accountability where employees feel empowered to take initiative and make decisions with confidence. When teams understand that their successes are interconnected, they become more motivated to be accountable for their commitments as well as those of other team members. With this in place, your team’s objectives will be consistently achieved, leading to a perpetual growth of success for your business.

4. Be Trustworthy and Trusting

Trustworthiness is a vital ingredient in fostering team accountability and workplace success. It means not just following through with your commitments, but also being willing to relinquish control and delegate certain tasks. Building trust encourages team members to be more open to taking ownership of their projects and successes. When team leaders are trustworthy, employees feel more secure in their roles, and they can rely on the team to be supportive. It encourages them to take initiative and hold themselves accountable for their actions which improves employee engagement. For team leaders, trustworthiness also serves as a reminder of the importance of respecting team members’ autonomy while staying engaged with team dynamics.

5. Assign Clear Ownership of Tasks and Projects

Assigning clear ownership of tasks and projects is essential to create a successful atmosphere of accountability in the workplace. This drives the success of any team or organization. Leaders must clearly define team expectations and goals, as well as assign team members or specific departments to respective tasks with specific responsibilities and deadlines. This will give them a sense of ownership over their responsibilities and help them to develop a sense of confidence and initiative. Additionally, team members should be encouraged to solve problems on their own and collaborate to better understand the team’s overall mission. By implementing these practices, teams can create an environment of accountability, resulting in improved team success.

6. Promote Collaboration Between Departments

Promoting collaboration between departments is key to encouraging friendly accountability between employees. By working together, everyone can become more invested in the success of the team as a whole, in addition to individual successes. This is especially important for larger organizations and projects, where it’s necessary to have multiple departments working together. It also ensures that everyone feels valued and appreciated, which will help to create an environment where feedback is given constructively and freely. Each individual’s efforts should be rewarded and recognized. This reinforces that one person’s success is reflective of the success of the team.

Collaboration between departments, when done properly, can be incredibly beneficial for team success. Not only does it create a sense of accountability and team-wide commitment, but it also allows for unique skills and experiences to be brought together to reach team goals. Different departments offer varying perspectives that can help to identify potential problems or areas of improvement. For team-wide goals to be met, team members must come together and work collaboratively.

By recognizing the power of team collaboration, organizations can reap rewards for both individual team successes as well as team-wide achievements. Moreover, team accountability helps to ensure that everyone is held responsible for their performance and contributions. This helps to foster a culture of cooperation between different departments within your organization to ensure projects are completed on time and to specification.

7. Encourage Feedback & Open Dialogue

Encouraging feedback and open dialogue between departments is essential for team accountability and reliability. It’s important to create a welcoming environment where team members feel comfortable expressing their thoughts and opinions, as well as giving constructive criticism in order to improve team performance. Having a space where team members can discuss problems and offer solutions helps to foster a collaborative and open environment.

A well functioning team should be able to lean on each other for support and guidance. This will ensure employees feel valued and appreciated, which in turn creates an atmosphere of trust and cooperation. Finally, team members should hold each other accountable for their commitments. This reinforces the idea that personal triumph leads to team victory. With team accountability and reliable communication in place, organizations can better ensure their projects are organized, quality, and on schedule.

8. Reward Employees Who Demonstrate Accountability

When team members go above and beyond to show accountability, it’s important to recognize their efforts. Rewarding team members for their exemplary performance increases team motivation and shows that you value their contributions. This can include verbal recognition, added benefits, or tangible rewards. Whatever you choose, keep in mind the reward should be tailored to what your employees value most. Without proper execution, your effort will fall flat and be undervalued. To make an impact that lasts it should be meaningful to each individual, demonstrating that you value those who take responsibility for their actions. This not only encourages team members to strive for team success but will also create a cohesive team culture.


Therefore, the success of any team or organization depends largely on team accountability. It involves team members ( in different roles or departments) working collaboratively, not only to achieve team goals but also to foster an environment of trust and cooperation. Leaders must create clear expectations and boundaries while allowing employees to take ownership of their work and make decisions on their own. Additionally, individuals should be encouraged to give feedback and hold each other accountable for their commitments. By creating a collaborative team atmosphere and culture of team accountability, organizations can ensure success in the workplace.

Check out our services to see how we can help improve your workforce.

Quiet Hiring: What You Should Know About the New Trend of 2023

With the pandemic, the rise of “Quiet Quitting” was the hot trend of 2022. This signified that employees are quitting the idea of hustle culture. Meaning they’re still doing their job, but not going above and beyond. This was punctuated by the notion that employees are no longer going to put in extra effort for less benefits or rewards.

But at the start of the new year, experts are saying “Quiet Hiring” will take over the workforce.

Gartner’s Senior Director of Research Emily Rose McRae says,

“Quiet hiring is when an organization acquires new skills without actually hiring new full-time employees.”

In effect this means reorganizing your current workforce to new roles or depts to address an immediate need. This could also be executed externally by hiring short-term contractors. With this system, businesses can keep up with global market changes despite reduced hiring budgets.

McRae continues, “The talent shortage that we talked about throughout 2022 hasn’t gone away. “So, you’re in a situation where it’s harder to get head count, and you have a desperate need for talent.”

So, if you find your hiring slowing down, this may be a good solution for you as it addresses an immediate need and assures you access to the talent you need to drive future success.

Here are 4 things to know if you are considering implementing quiet hiring in your workforce:

1.What Is Quiet Hiring and How Does It Work

Quiet hiring is a concept that has recently gained traction in 2023 as businesses look for ways to be more efficient with their workforce. The idea is to temporarily reassign employees or transfer them to other roles or departments that are more vital, rather than hiring new talent. This way, skills are gained where they are needed most, without committing to hiring a long-term full time employee. By maximizing existing talent, businesses can ensure essential requirements are met and financial goals are achieved. This can help businesses save money and time on recruiting, and it can also be beneficial for employees who are looking for new challenges or opportunities.

Another way to approach quiet hiring is by outsourcing responsibilities to short term contractors. Short term contractors can provide your organization with specialized skills without committing to a long-term hire. Outsourcing certain tasks can be beneficial for organizations looking to tackle projects that require specific knowledge and experience. Short-term contractors offer the advantage of not being locked into an employment agreement past the project’s completion, and often come with a wealth of expertise or have access to cutting edge technologies, crucial for staying ahead of the competition.

2. Benefits of Quiet Hiring

Quiet hiring can be a beneficial practice for an organization in many ways. It allows companies to adjust their workforce to prioritize business functions at any given time without having to incur excessive financial strain. In other words, quiet hiring allows business leaders to reorganize their current workforce without having to hire additional personnel.

Furthermore, quiet hiring offers employees the opportunity to gain clarity about their role in the organization and their long-term goals, thus providing them with greater job satisfaction. This also presents the opportunity for them to discover new roles and gain skills and experience essential for growth. The practice also serves to give employees a better understanding of the core functions of the business. Which will help them better articulate it’s purpose and value to business partners and customers. By employing quiet hiring, businesses can optimize their workforce for maximum productivity without having to incur extra costs.

Therefore, quiet hiring a valuable tool that allows businesses to address immediate needs for talent while still being cost effective. Ultimately, quiet hiring enables organizations to address short-term needs for talent swiftly and effectively.

3. Tips for Effectively Managing Quiet Hiring

1. Emphasize how their individual performance contributes to the overall success of the business to prevent them from feeling undervalued. Without a proper introduction, this could lead to their resignation.

2. Explain why this change is necessary for achieving success. Transparency and open communication goes a long way in building their loyalty and trust. This also offers them a clear idea of what the future of the company looks like.

3. Offer clear reasons for this change and inform them of how it benefits them personally.

4. Make sure employees understand any new opportunities quiet hiring could provide for them. This could present an opportunity for them to experience new roles within the organization and gain new skills needed for growth.

5. Offer career development, work-life balance, or salary incentives to motivate employees to make the change.

6. Show that the shift is a joint effort to achieve success together, rather than an individual or team-based decision.

By following these tips, you can ensure that your workforce is properly managed and mitigate any potential problems associated with quiet hiring. With proper communication and understanding, you can ensure that employees are satisfied and motivated to do their best work, even in the face of change.

4. Potential Implications of Quiet Hiring in the Future

As businesses continue to embrace quiet hiring, there will be a greater need for internal talent mobility and upskilling existing workers. This approach to hiring carries both pros and cons for organizations, especially in the long run. On one hand, it allows for more flexibility when bringing new skills into the company as well as provides an option for cost savings. On the other hand, it may lead to a lack of job security among existing employees which could potentially cause resentment or create an unhealthy working environment. Additionally, relying too heavily on short-term contractors can lead to issues with quality control and a higher turnover rate as compared to full-time hires.

Ultimately, businesses will need to evaluate their individual needs and determine whether quiet hiring is a feasible solution. For example, organizations may benefit from incorporating this approach in the short term to quickly acquire new skills while continuing to invest in training existing employees for long-term success. Taking a thoughtful and balanced approach to quiet hiring will help ensure that all stakeholders are taken into consideration when making decisions about bringing new skills into the organization. It will be critical in the future to develop a balance between short-term and long-term strategies that are beneficial for both the organization and its workforce.


The key for businesses will be to find a way to manage quiet hiring in order to maximize benefits while minimizing any potential risks or drawbacks. If managed correctly, quiet hiring can become an invaluable tool that allows organizations to address short-term needs swiftly and effectively while achieving maximum productivity from their existing talent pool. By understanding how quiet hiring works and developing an effective strategy, organizations can capitalize on this approach as a way to bring in new skills and maintain a competitive edge in the future. For more insights on workforce management, check out our services.

How to Boost Workforce Reliability through Meaningful Work

Are you often frustrated by your seemingly unreliable employees? Do they leave for inexplicable periods of time, avoid their responsibilities, or have attendance problems? If so, this prevents your business from running smoothly and hinders its productivity. Having a reliable workforce is essential for any organization’s success. According to Judd, our North Account Manager, focusing on meaningful work and long-term placements is key to creating a reliable workforce.

But how can companies ensure that their employees are reliable, productive, and efficient?

Meaningful work has been shown to have a positive impact on employee retention and performance. It also improves morale, job satisfaction, and motivation. Taking the time to create a positive and supportive environment for your employees will go a long way in improving both the reliability and quality of work of your team.

In this blog post, we will explore 5 strategies to improve workforce reliability.

1. Offer Meaningful and Fulfilling Work

One of the most effective ways to improve workforce reliability is to offer meaningful and fulfilling work. When employees’ work holds value to them, they are more likely to stay on the job and be reliable. Providing meaningful and satisfying tasks will make them more likely to stay with your company for a longer period of time, which provides much needed consistency in the workforce. By offering opportunities for meaningful work, you can create an environment where employees feel engaged and motivated.

Additionally, your employees need to know that their job is important and that the work they do is making an impact. This leads to increased job satisfaction which improves company morale and motivation. When they know that their work is having a positive effect on the organization, they are more likely to stick around and perform their best.

2. Prioritize Long-Term Employment

Employees become less dependable and don’t put in as much effort when they feel like their position is only temporary. Longer-term placements provide your employees with the financial stability they need, as well as the opportunity for growth and development. This helps you build trust with your employees, as they know that their job is secure and that they can rely on the company for more than just a short-term fix.

Long-term workers are more reliable because they are committed to their jobs, providing a consistent and dependable workforce for businesses. They spend more time learning about their job duties, allowing them to become experts in the field and deliver better outcomes for their employers. Another benefit is that employees get to build relationships with other team members and understand the company culture better.

3. Provide Training and Development

Training and development are key components of successful workforce reliability initiatives. They increase workforce reliability by providing employees with the necessary skills they need to perform their jobs effectively. Investing in your staff’s professional growth not only increases their satisfaction level but also gives them the necessary tools to keep up with the ever-changing demands of the industry. By doing so, employers can create a positive working environment that encourages productivity, trust, and loyalty. Additionally, training and development programs can help employees recognize the importance of their efforts and motivate them to be reliable contributors. Finally, having a well-trained workforce can lead to fewer mistakes and higher overall productivity—making it a win for everyone involved.

Additional training such as mentorship programs can be used to help new employees learn the ropes quickly and to foster a supportive team environment that encourages workforce reliability. By providing guidance and advice, mentors can help newcomers feel comfortable and confident in their roles. This also provides them with the resources and guidance they need to succeed in their roles. This way employees are able to understand expectations and perform to standard. Providing mentorship opportunities for employees can dramatically increase their motivation, job satisfaction, and engagement which, in turn, increases their reliability.

4. Promote Clear Communication

Creating an environment of clear communication and mentorship will allow managers to better understand their workforce, enabling them to create workforce reliability. Establishing open channels of communication between managers and staff is essential for fostering a reliable, high-performing team. This allows employees to feel comfortable voicing their questions and concerns, leading to more feedback on possible areas of improvement and better understanding all around.

Along with establishing open communication, regular check-ins should be held between managers and employees to discuss expectations, address challenges, and celebrate successes. This will help to ensure that everyone is on the same page and that any potential issues are addressed quickly and efficiently. Employees will appreciate that managers are available for support and guidance. By doing so, you’re instilling in them a sense of dedication and motivation to strive for their best.

5. Provide Rewards and Recognition

Rewarding employees for a job well-done is a great way to keep them motivated and committed to their work. This could include thanking them for their hard work or offering congratulations after a big project. Offering tangible rewards such as gifts, bonuses, or a meal are other ways to honor your employees. Providing recognition for employees’ hard work and dedication goes a long way in increasing their morale, job satisfaction, and ultimately, their reliability. This also supports a strong work relationship between managers and team members, which is essential in creating workforce reliability.


By implementing these workforce reliability strategies, employers can create an environment that encourages productivity, engagement, and high quality work. With a workforce that is reliable, motivated, and fulfilled, businesses can experience greater success and growth. So make sure you’re taking the necessary steps towards creating workforce reliability in your organization.

At Award we know a talented and reliable workforce is critical for any organization’s success. Consider offering meaningful work and long-term employment opportunities to attract talented and dedicated candidates that will give your business a step up in today’s competitive landscape. Contact us or view our services to revamp your workforce today.

Improve Your Workforce through Topgrading

If you find your hiring process slowing down, now is the best time to revamp your workforce. With a strong 69.3% participation rate in the 7-County Metro, many skilled workers are encouraged to find work in today’s economy. Making this an opportune time to recruit and hire top performers for the future needs of your business.

According to our Sr. Account Manager, David Weiler “Now is the perfect opportunity to improve your workforce through top grading underperformers.”

Underperforming employees can drag down the rest of your workforce. It is important to identify these employees and replace them with top performers. This drives performance and improves your company’s results. Which effectively helps you get ahead of hiring competition.

So, if you want to improve your business’ chances in today’s economy, topgrading is the way to go.

Here are 5 things to know about topgrading your workforce:

1. Look at Organizational Makeup

To understand how to topgrade your workforce, you need to analyze the composition of your organization.

Generally, your workforce is made up of:

  • 20% of an organizations employees are superstars
  • 60% of its employees are competent
  • 20% of its employees are underachievers

The goal of topgrading is to get rid of the bottom 20% of your employees and replace them with superstar candidates. By making this a consistent part of your hiring process, eventually, your bottom 20% will be performing better than the middle 60% of your competition, which is exactly what you want.

2. Who Do You Topgrade?

In order to implement this successfully, you need identify those employees who fall in the bottom 20% of underachievers. While this may be obvious in some instances, it’s not always clear which employees should stay and which ones should be replaced.

Here are six characteristics of employees you need to top grade:

#1—They put forth the minimum amount of effort.

Minimum effort does not drive company growth and profitability. Going “above and beyond” is what gets the job done. Somebody who arrives late and leaves early does not display the commitment necessary to help their employer reach its goals for growth.

#2—They’re uncooperative.

When a team effort is needed to complete a project or meet a deadline, an “all hands on deck” mentality should prevail. These employees habitually make themselves scarce during critical situations.

#3—They’re hostile to co-workers and customers.

This type of behavior can be disastrous, both within the organization in terms of company culture and also outside the organization in terms of employer branding.

#4—They make excuses.

The bottom 20% makes excuses to explain away poor performance. In the worst-case scenario, they blame their co-workers, “throwing them under the bus.”

#5—They complain.

Breeding negativity by complaining can be like a cancer in the workplace, especially during high-pressure situations associated with a deadline. Complaining contributes nothing positive; it only brings down the rest of the team.

#6—They do not invest in themselves.

Employees should continually seek out new training and similar opportunities to better themselves and add to their skill set. When they do that, they become more valuable. When they don’t, their stock within the company falls, and ultimately so do their contributions.

3. Identify Employee Skills and Talents

Top grading requires that you hire employees who possess the skills and talents needed to succeed in your organization. By identifying the skills and talents you desire, you will find better talent that suits your business needs now and in the future. This ensures high employee performance, and long-term success within your organization.

Skills that superstar candidates possess are strong work ethic, reliability and dependability, and attention to detail. These qualities help ensure that projects are completed accurately and on schedule, and create a more productive and efficient work environment. Additionally, teamwork is key in a successful grading workforce. Strong communication is also a key indicator. Employees who are able to communicate effectively and understand expectations are more likely to be successful. This also fosters better relationships among coworkers, leading to a more cohesive team.

In addition to identifying soft skills, it’s important to focus on individuals who have expert knowledge and experience in their field. This is because they will be able to provide advanced expertise and contribute to the success of the business. These types of candidates are also committed to growing and developing their skills. This allows businesses to stay abreast of market changes and sustain a high level of output, which are essential for any company.

4. Improves Work Culture

Another benefit of replacing underachievers with top performers is that it improves work culture. Topgrading not only improves work productivity, but also enhance workplace morale.

Underachievers often leave others to pick up the slack, which creates a negative effect on morale. On the other hand, top performers raise the bar for everyone and make work more enjoyable. They also inspire others to do their best. As a result, replacing underachievers with high achievers is essential for creating a positive work culture.

Additionally, hiring the right candidates with the right personalities is key to establishing a great work culture. The candidate should have the ability to fit into the team dynamic and contribute positively to the existing culture. They should also be able to work well with existing team members, so they can all collaborate together effectively. Their hard work may also inspire others to do the same which improves overall quality. All in all, top grading is essential for creating an environment that encourages productivity and morale.

5. Increased Quality, Productivity and Profitability

Businesses need skilled and competent employees to produce more output and save on costs. Replacing underperforming workers with excellent employees benefits not only the quality of your workforce but also your business ROI. Statistics demonstrate that top-graded staff create more efficient, higher quality work which subsequently leads to greater profit margins for businesses.

Highly performing employees are essential for businesses to generate greater productivity, as these workers are typically the top performers in their field and have the skills needed to get the job done efficiently. With these employees on board, companies can reduce costs associated with hiring new employees and use the resources for more suitable needs.

Because of the overall higher quality, companies that practice top grading often find that their customers are more satisfied with the product or service, leading to increased sales and repeat business. In today’s competitive marketplace, businesses must do everything they can to gain an edge. Topgrading is one way to ensure that your company is staffed with the best possible talent, giving you a leg up on the competition.

By topgrading your workforce, you will be able to find skilled talent that will perform better and provide more value to your organization. This will help you make the most of valuable resources and ensure that your workforce is the best it can be. Contact us or check out our services today to get started.