One-third of companies planning to hire in 2013

But gaps between employee, employer expectations: Survey

One-third (32 per cent) of Canadian companies are planning to grow their staff in 2013, according to a survey by Workopolis.

Nearly two-thirds (65 per cent) of the 100 executives surveyed said they are planning to maintain their staff size, with just two per cent predicting a drop.

But businesses are struggling to find suitable candidates and this is creating a number of hardships for senior executives, according to Mind the Gap.

Two-thirds (66 per cent) agreed that sometimes finding the right candidate to fill an opening can be a source of stress. And 60 per cent said spending too much time hunting for talent is reducing the amount of time they can dedicate to other strategic responsibilities.

Two-fifths (38 per cent) said it took longer than expected to fill positions over the past year, found the survey.

Two-thirds of senior executives (67 per cent) cited a lack of soft skills among candidates, including a positive attitude (mentioned by 37 per cent), communications skills (27 per cent) and strong work ethic (26 per cent).

There are a number of areas where there is a significant gap between employers and candidates, said Workopolis. For one, “working environment” is the leading criteria overall that candidates use to evaluate a job offer (cited by 57 per cent of jobseekers), yet just 27 per cent of employers say they’re taking steps to create a better working environment to attract and retain top talent.

And the factors that are most important to employees vary considerably depending on their age and career stage, while just 59 per cent of employers said they make an effort to tailor their recruitment processes and messages to attract candidates from different age groups.

“Recruiting blind spots are masking access to candidates,” said Tara Talbot, vice-president of human resources at Workopolis. “Jobseekers and eager employers are travelling on the same path but often times are just slightly out of sight of one another. Taking the time to understand each other’s needs and adopting a tailored approach will help to pull the challenges of today’s labour market into sharper focus.”

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