March 19, 2021

Industries Update, As We See It

For the last six months, we’ve seen business consultants, bloggers, and marketing firms weigh in on what a post-COVID business landscape will look like. 

As a recruiting firm with deep roots, we’ve established key relationships across multiple industries. As a result, we’ve heard directly from decision-makers about which tactics companies are enlisting to reset from COVID while preparing for any unforeseen future events. Here’s what we’ve learned:

Enterprise software: Developing employee loyalty.

The pandemic made necessary the fast-tracking of digital transformations in companies across the globe. Reports indicate that some companies were required to accelerate their digital strategies by three to four years. The necessity to keep a strong team in place is crucial to meeting this increase in demand. However, it presents both a challenge and an opportunity to enterprise software companies of all sizes. 

What’s more, for some, remote work is here to stay. Certain roles in sales, marketing, and development have been untethered from company headquarters without affecting their full-time job status. This represents a potentially significant benefit for employees looking to leave high-cost metro areas or move closer to family.

Furthermore, companies are finding creative ways to provide additional financial, physical, and mental health support through enhanced sick leave, financial assistance, flex hours, and child care provisions. In addition to competitive salaries, companies are investing in professional development and educational programs to entice new employees and inspire loyalty.

Supplemental strategies for nutraceutical brands.

In 2020, nutraceutical companies were impacted by two driving forces. At the consumer level, there was a hyper-focus on wellness and sustainability, and at the federal level, there were several significant regulatory shifts. As a result, many brands needed to shift gears, creating the demand for specifically-skilled individuals to help them keep up. 

Companies placed an increased value on candidates with certifications like Six Sigma, Lean, etc., to help bridge gaps within the organization. These skills and techniques provide candidates with the “change agent” factor needed to excel in today’s climate.

On the other end of the spectrum, a company’s ability to compete with unemployment benefits for skilled and non-skilled manufacturing employees has become crucial. With less time and opportunity to train new employees, raising wages and improving benefits to retain current staff is the more cost-effective strategy in the long run.

Architectural firms create new structure. 

One of the biggest surprises from the business landscape in 2020 was the demand for new construction projects. Being a hands-on industry by nature, many architectural firms were faced with the increased responsibility of keeping staff safe while remaining productive.

To meet this challenge, many have used their expertise to develop and implement social distancing solutions. Offices are being redesigned with added pods, glass partitions, and minimized seating to reduce the occupancy of common areas. Rooftops and outdoor areas, where permitted, are being used as break rooms, while hand washing stations are being installed in various locations throughout offices.

As for the day-to-day, limits on meetings and eliminating non-crucial travel is mandated, and manufacturer reps and vendors who want to meet with staff need to do so via platforms like Zoom. 

Strengthening the links within supply chains.

Harvard Business Review called 2020 “a wakeup call for supply chain management,” and they weren’t exaggerating. With products flying off of shelves, surging demands for health and safety products, and online shopping at a fever pitch, supply chain efficiency across all sectors came under unprecedented scrutiny. Many companies discovered that their systems needed to be stronger and more agile to adapt, not only to the current crisis, but to future ones as well.

To streamline operations and increase efficiency, companies are bridging internal skill gaps by creating new hybrid positions. To fill these roles, companies are turning to experienced, highly-skilled individuals with multiple qualifications. This is a win/win for both companies and candidates, as they’re offering higher salaries for ultimately a more cost-effective return.

Companies are also increasing their focus on supply chain technology. Outdated systems are being upgraded with better planning and communications software, improved inventory databases, and robotics to assist in warehousing.