If you are reading this in Australia, you would have experienced quite possibly the greatest turnaround in talent supply and demand in history.

This time last year, we were in Covid lockdown with a predicted unemployment rate of anywhere between 16-20%, the road to recovery was going to be long… very long.

But fast forward where we now have an employment rate of 5.6% – similar to pre-Covid conditions and we have a severe shortage of people – everywhere I turn from chefs in the outback towns to IT developers to manufacturing and construction companies – the talent supply is in high demand.

We do not have access to the usual working tribe that come through backpackers and immigration etc.  Our aging population is increasing, meaning the working age population of 15–64 year olds sits at 16.6 million,  as at Q4 2020, out of 25.36 million of the total population.

So, this remarkable turnaround has me thinking that we all need to be ready for whatever the next hurdle is or for the next opportunity that might arise.

Chances are if you are a high-performer or in a high skills area you will be getting ‘seen’ on social media… being approached for opportunities…. are you ready for the call?

This also applies to those of us who are currently getting ready for performance reviews (or reflections as I call them), as organisations look at their internal talent to help retain and develop the people, they have invested in.

Again – are you career ready for this situation?

Those of you who are saying yes, I am ready… are you really?

The world of recruiting has changed, the time to hire has decreased, the amount of video interviews or videos with assessment behind the scenes is here, AI is here…

How are you going to sell yourself, or differentiate yourself, against your peers, the external market? Would you be willing to risk a 12-month contract to gain skills and experience, and sacrifice a permanent role?

These are all trends that are happening right now and you need to be prepared for all scenarios.

And of course, when the borders re-open, the talent will come… Australia is a key tourist hotspot – we have the jobs: although you may be sought after now, this may not be the case when international travel is allowed.

We are also on the precipice of a new financial year and costs will be on the agenda for every business.

One of the biggest costs for most businesses is the wage bill – this seems like an ideal scenario for restructures, outsourcing models, using tech where possible to reduce these costs – are you ready for this and how to apply for a new role internally and/or externally?

The good news is that throughout all this uncertainty there are options that you can do to be career ready.

Here are a few tips:

  1. Know yourself – This could be a conversation with your co-worker, your boss, or an external career coach, it could be an assessment to get to know yourself better and your strengths
  2. Be ready – have your elevator pitch ready, know how to sell yourself – know how and where organisations seek talent.
  3. Network – keep your friends and professional networks close, referrals are a key part of career, they could also turn into your referee quickly!

If you are an employer and would like some advice as to how to attract and retain staff, we would also welcome the opportunity to offer some insights.

If this is on your mind then connect with us, it is an exciting time but as 2020 taught us all – expect the unexpected!

Be career ready – check out our Career Accelerator program!

Be ready for a staff shortage

General Manager – Consulting

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