"Personnel fever": the results of a seminar on new strategies in the labour market

On February 17, OPEN Group COO Irina Ositskaya spoke at a seminar of the Franco-Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry dedicated to the problems of finding and retaining specialists in an overheated labour market.
Together with Ekaterina Nedelcho, Head of Recruitment at Auchan Retail Russia, Irina opened the second section of the "Blue Collar" seminar. As part of their joint report, the experts spoke about building new recruitment strategies during the pandemic.

According to Rosstat, Russia's working-age population is declining every year. In 2021, the natural decline in the country's population amounted to more than 1 million people. By 2036, the majority of Russia's population will be in the 46-55 age group. Therefore, employers are facing serious competition for candidates. Recruiters are using more and more different technologies to improve the efficiency and quality of selection. HR professionals are stepping up their efforts to build employer branding. More and more companies are investing in digital tools, as well as in retaining and developing their employees.

In 2020-21 OPEN Group decided to take a large-scale optimization of all recruitment tools and internal business processes, which allowed the company to close 500-700 vacancies per month even during the difficult times. Irina Ositskaya shared her insights about the most effective technices and how they affected business performance, including the opening of our school of recruiters and the complete restructuring of the mass recruitment department: “This set of measures allowed us to close 25% more vacancies in 2021 in quantitative terms, than in 2020."

Ekaterina Nedelcho listed the new trends in the behaviour of “blue-collar" workers. Thus, the change in financial expectations and priorities is confirmed by the decision of many employees to return to work in their native cities, albeit with a decrease in wages; an example of internal mobility was the influx of personnel to the Russian coast (including from the Moscow region); the trend of self-employment becomes more tangible. Accordingly, employers have to change the tactics of attracting "blue collars". Since they have become less likely to post resumes, recruiters are putting more effort into finding candidates on their own.

Interest in referral programs is growing, and many employers are betting on the return of laid-off employees: “Sometimes it is worth calling those whom you have already trained once,” emphasized Ekaterina Nedelcho. – Conversion in such cases can reach 20%. Also, we should not forget about the automation of recruitment: the speed is now such that in Moscow you can find a job in a day.”

The main achievement of Ekaterina’s division in 2021 was the centralization of recruitment across the entire retail network in Russia, which made it possible to significantly increase recruitment efficiency, introduce universal tools and optimize costs.

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